Ever wonder what butylparaben, oxybenzone, emu oil, or petrolatum is doing in your body care products? Tired of buying lip balms that only keep your lips moisturized if you reapply every 10 minutes? If so, what better way to ensure you’re getting the best quality, most effective product than to make your own?!
It may seem a little intimidating at first, but by using the simple recipe below and doing a little experimenting on your own, you’ll be making your own healthful, animal-free lip balms in no time!
The primary ingredients in lip balm are wax and oil, so you’ll want to start there.
Beeswax is one of the most popular lip balm ingredients, though obviously not vegan! The best waxes to use for vegan balms are either candelilla or carnauba, or a mixture thereof. I have also seen soy wax available, though have never used it. Feel free to use whatever vegan wax you can find and see how it works for you! My favorite place to buy supplies is from Mountain Rose Herbs, though you can always do a Google search for lip balm supplies, as there are many online retailers that sell supplies for making your own body care products.
I generally use 3 parts oil to 1 part wax, though this may vary slightly depending on the hardness of your wax (carnauba wax is a much harder wax than soy, generally speaking). If you’re using one of the softer waxes, you may want to add an extra teaspoon to the recipe below to get the right consistency.
Vegan Lip Balm Recipe
(3 parts oil to 1 part wax- I’ve used a tablespoon here for simplicity)
What You’ll Need (makes ~10-12 balms):
1 double boiler (a pot within a pot), or similar contraption
1 glass measuring cup, with spout
1 Tablespoon plant-derived wax (soy, carnauba, candelilla, etc.)
3 Tablespoon organic, unrefined oil (I like to use 2 Tablespoons of virgin coconut oil + 1 Tablespoon hemp seed oil)
¼ tsp* kukui nut oil, for soothing dry, chapped skin (optional)
¼ tsp* (or less) vitamin E oil, for extended shelf life (optional)
10-20 drops organic essential oils (mint and citrus work well in lip balms, but go crazy and use whatever makes you smile!)
*Be aware that the more oil you use, the more wax you may need to add to get the desired consistency.
You might also enjoy these related articles:
- Are Fish Spas Vegan?
- Is My Shampoo Vegan? A guide to Vegan Hair Products
- How to Get That Healthy Vegan Glow?
What to Do:
Start by melting your wax slowly, over low heat, in a double boiler on your stovetop. When the wax has all turned liquid, add in your carrier oils. Keep in mind that the oils that are solid at room temperature will result in a firmer consistency in your final product.
Once everything has mixed together into a homogenous liquid (I like to stir with a clean chopstick to help this process along), add the kukui nut and vitamin E oil, if using. Remove from heat and begin adding essential oils- this is the best part! Start slowly, as adding too much can be overpowering, and may even make delicate lip skin a little irritated.
Mint can make a fresh, clean feeling lip balm, while herbal oils such as lavender and chamomile can add a more relaxing element. Using the knowledge of aromatherapy, you can create whatever scent (and vibe) you like, just be sure to check the properties of the oils you use to be sure they don’t contain compounds that may cause photosensitivity (such as bergapten in bergamot) or that aren’t recommended for use during pregnancy (if you’re expecting, that is).
Transfer from boiler into glass measuring cup and pour slowly into tins, lip balm tubes, or salve jars. Make sure not to cap until product has fully set; I usually like to wait at least 4 hours or so, though it may take longer if it’s more humid where you are. Now you can feel great making your own premium, organic lip balms for a fraction of the cost… If you enjoy a bit of color, you can also powder your lips with some vegan mineral powder in the color of your choice right after applying the balm.