How to make lip balm using oils, waxes, and skin-loving herbs. This is a fantastic winter skincare recipe that’s fun to make and soothes chapped lips. It also includes two methods to make lip balm — the quick version and the cold-infused method.
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Winter weather can take a real toll on your skin but especially your lips. They can dry out, crack, and become sore and uncomfortable. If you suffer from cold sores, winter stress can cause also cause a break-out. Keeping your lips protected and moisturized is key to ensuring they don’t suffer, and the best way to do that is with lip balm. Though you can buy it easily enough, lip balm is easy to make at home. It requires very little in the way of ingredients and is a fun and natural project that you can enjoy and share with friends. In this project, I’ll show how to make lip balm with simple ingredients, including waxes, herbal oils, and essential oil. You’ll have a fun time making them too!
One of the best things about making your own lip balm is that you get control over the ingredients. Depending on your own philosophies or health needs, you might want to avoid using things like petroleum jelly, nut oils, and animal products. The recipe below is flexible, meaning you can use whatever you’d like or have on hand. The important thing to remember with lip balm is that the final consistency reflects the balance of solid to liquid oils/waxes.
Herbal Lip Balm Recipe
This herbal lip balm recipe makes approx. three 10 ml containers. You can double, triple, or otherwise adjust the recipe to make a lot more, though. If you’d like, you can omit the herbs and essential oil to make unscented, natural lip balm.
- 1 tsp solid oil or wax* such as beeswax, soy wax, candelilla wax, or cocoa butter. Use just one or a mix.
- 4 tsp infused liquid oil* – choose one with conditioning properties and a mild flavor, such as grapeseed oil, rice bran oil, or sweet almond oil.
- Dried Skincare Herbs – peppermint, chamomile, calendula, lemon balm, or other herbs that heal the skin.
- Organic essential oil (optional)** – three drops of a skin-safe organic essential oil or natural flavor oil. Peppermint, lavender, and orange are ideal choices.
* For harder lip balm, then use less liquid oil and more hard oils. And vice-versa if you’d prefer a softer balm.
** Organic essential oil tends to be more skin safe for leave-on skincare products, especially those for your lips.
Lip Balm Containers
Once you’ve melted and mixed the lip balm ingredients together, you’ll need to pour it into containers. You can use any small tubes, pots, or jars on hand, providing they are clean and sterile. If you reuse containers, just make sure to clean them and let them dry completely. You could reuse lipstick tubes, lip balm pots, Altoids tins, or any other food-safe tin, glass, or plastic container.
To clean containers for use in beauty products, wipe all the oily residue out first. Then run them through the dishwasher, and they’ll be ready. If you don’t have a dishwasher, wash them in hot soapy water, rinse them in scalding water and then dry them with a clean cloth. Only use containers that are fully dried since moisture can cause oils to go rancid.
Alternatively, you can buy lip balm containers. Lip balm tubes are better for lip balm recipes that are firmer, and lip balm pots are better for more creamy recipes. This lip balm recipe is somewhere in the middle so that you can choose either type. The best place to buy small quantities of lip balm containers is online, but you may also be able to find them in craft shops.
Herbal Skincare Recipes
- Cocoa Butter Lip Balm Recipe
- Healing Skin Salve Recipe
- Chamomile Skin Cream Recipe
- Gentle Herbal Skin Cleanser Recipe
How to Make Lip Balm
There are two ways to make this herbal lip balm recipe. The cold-infusion method takes much longer, but you can be assured that the oils and herbs in your recipe aren’t overly affected by heat. Using this method, mix eight teaspoons of liquid oil with three teaspoons of dried herbs in a glass jar. Seal the jar and place it in a warm place out of direct sunlight. Leave it there to infuse for two to four weeks. Give it a shake every day or so, and then strain the infused oil off to use in this recipe. You can do this by pouring the oil and herbs through a sieve or through cheesecloth. Discard the herbs, but reserve the herbal-infused oil to make lip balm.
Next, mix four teaspoons of the herbal oil in a small saucepan with one teaspoon of your chosen solid oil(s). Melt them together using the double-boiler method. Essentially, floating the pan in another pan filled with simmering water. Don’t leave the pans unattended, and ensure that water doesn’t splatter out of the larger pan and get in the oils. When the oils are fully melted, add the essential oil, stir well, and pour it into lip balm containers. You can use homemade lip balm as soon as it’s cooled.
Hot Herbal Infusion Method
There’s a second method to making this lip balm recipe that’s a lot quicker. The hot infusion method uses a double boiler to make herbal-infused oil. Instead of weeks, it will take you under an hour to make homemade lip balm.
To begin, place all of the ingredients for the lip balm recipe (except the essential oil) in a glass jar or small steel pan. Then place this container into another container of hot water. This heats the oil evenly but not to the point where the oil and herbs are so hot that it affects its properties.
Make Herbal Lip Balm
If you’re using a glass jar, don’t seal the top, and set it in a crockpot shallowly filled with simmering water and set at high. If you’re using a small saucepan, set the pan inside a slightly larger pan filled halfway with simmering water. The heat from the water in the larger pan warms and melts the content of the smaller pan. Simmer the water in the outer pan for thirty minutes, then strain the oil using cheesecloth or a sieve. Discard or compost the herbs, and pour the herbal-infused oils into a clean pan. Your infused oil may have herbal residue – this is perfectly fine. Add the essential oil, stir well, and pour into your chosen lip balm containers. The lip balm is ready to use as soon as it’s cooled to room temperature.
Shelf Life of Herbal Lip Balm
Once poured and cooled, lip balm can have a shelf-life of up to two years. The longevity is based purely on the nearest expiration date of the ingredients you’ve used. Look on the backs of the bottles, containers, and packaging of the ingredients and find the closest best-by date. Use that date as the best-by date for your homemade lip balm. For more ideas on making beauty recipes browse these soap & beauty recipes.