DIY Beginners, Lips, MsBarb, The Scrub Me Down Kitchen

DIY: Winter Nights Lip Balm

I know. I know. This recipe has been done everywhere. It’s been done on Humblebee&Me to Instructables, to slightly different versions on countless blogs and sites. I first heard of this recipe ages ago from my coconut dealer down in Hainan (I know you are not familiar with Chinese geography; so think of a southern tropical province in China on the ocean, overrun by tourists from China and around the world). I bought a boat load of virgin coconut oil from him for soaping (and I hear you all cringe at the thought of that price. Way back then it was the only way to get coconut oil in China), he sent me a free tube of lip chap that I really liked and found worked well in China’s harsh winters. I inquired about the ingredients, then looked into the ingredients, and discovered it was purely awesome! And pretty easy to make.

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Beeswax, you beautiful thing you! 

At the start of cold weather, I’ve one of these tubes scattered in almost every room in the house. I apply it as soon as I wake, after my shower and before I go to sleep. It has saved me more times than I can count. It’s wicked easy to make, and lasts for about a year or more if you stash them in the fridge.

This balm is a VERY tacky balm. It is not all glossy and shiny, it is tacky. Really tacky. You are basically applying beeswax to your lips here.

So yeah. Rub, rub, rub, and draaaaaaag.

IMG_8581Beeswax has been used for ages upon ages to help create designs on fabrics in ancient times, used as sealing wax for documents and cosmetics for ages! It’s been used and is still used as a highly effective waterproof sealant for canvas, still used by woodworkers too as a wood sealant and wood protector. So if it is used as a waterproof sealant, can you imagine how awesome this will be for your lips? Lock that moisture in! Beeswax is of a lot of interest to number of researchers who are currently looking into the antimicrobial properties.

Beeswax in most lip balm recipes is used to prevent meltage and to give your product a longer lifespan. You really don’t want to be putting a tube of lip balm into your pocket and have it melt? Right? That’d just be a little on the embarrassing side. Beeswax is a pain in the arse to melt down as it has a melting point of about 62-65C so that means you are constantly standing there and stirring or just walk away and do your laundry. Clean the bathroom. Write up the corresponding blog post and add pictures later…. You know. You’ve got lots of time. It took about 22 minutes for the beeswax to melt for this recipe.

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I find getting a group of ten tubes, elastic around them is the perfect way to decant my tubes. Then I always know exactly how many tubes I’ve made just by a glance. 

In this recipe I used raw beeswax that I actually melted, and separated myself! We had a local hive here where I used to get all my bee stash from, but they moved to… you guessed it. Sunny tropical Hainan and didn’t take me with them. They took their bees. Not me. So sad. But, you can use beeswax pellets or even white beeswax if that’s what you have. Raw beeswax smells powerfully of warm honey, which is VERY noticeable in the finished product and one of my favourite scents!

Mmmmm… pure beeswax candles.

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I’ve tried everything from a spoon, a funnel, a syringe, an actual product designed to help with lip balm pouring… the only thing I get consistent results with and little to no spillage is a beaker. I waste much less product this way. 

Beeswax is in my personal opinion the star ingredient to stop chapped or dry lips from happening. It acts like a humectant by drawing moisture from the air and depositing it onto your lips. It traps moisture in your lips and prevents moisture from evaporating.

Next up, coconut oil. For this recipe you want to make sure that you are using virgin coconut oil. The same coconut oil that you would eat or use to cook with. It smells awesome but I find coconut oil alone has a disgusting texture. Gross. Anyways, I find that in lip care where we use coconut oil the smell does not survive. Which is sad. We’re really just using coconut in this recipe to help the beeswax glide over your lips. As I mentioned above, beeswax is tacky and does cause a lot of grief trying to spread just beeswax over your skin.

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Even if you don’t have any spills, polish up your tubes so your labels stay better.

There are way too many websites out there today that tell you how wonderful coconut oil is for your skin, and well… who knows. I can’t really find a lot of science to say much one way or another, but in this recipe? As I said, I am using it to help the beeswax to slide more easily over your lips. And that’s the only reason why I am using it here. You can use other carrier oils (sweet almond oil, jojoba oil, sunflower oil to name a few) in its place.

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All our Winter Nights Lip Balm all in a row, aren’t they pretty! 

I’ve also decided to get everyone back on the peppermint essential oil train in lip products. I miss my mint! I love applying it and feeling that cool tingle dancing over my lips.

So tuck on in, roll up your sleeves and let’s get creating!

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  1. Prepare your double boiler/water bath and set it on a barely there simmer you want to see bubbles form in the bottom of your pan, but you don’t want to see them float to the surface.
  2. Gather all your ingredients, equipment and tools. Prepare your lip balm tubes or pots.
  3. Weigh out your beeswax and virgin coconut oil into your beaker or heat resistant glass measuring cup and place into your double boiler.
  4. Wait until your beeswax has melted completely before removing it from the water bath. Be sure to wipe off the outside of your beaker or glass measuring cup!
  5. Stir with a stir rod or chopstick well.
  6. Once your beaker or measuring cup is cool to the touch, I’m sorry, but you will have to work very very fast. Add in your Vitamin E and peppermint essential oil and stir well.
  7. Decant your balm into your prepared balm tubes or pots and allow to cool.
  8. Use a tissue to clean up any spills, cap, label and enjoy!

Ready for a BONUS post??? 

Clean up is a pain in the backside when you are working with lip balms and what not. And to make your life easier, here are some simple steps. Use your spatula to scrape as much product out of your measuring cup or beaker as possible. Take a tissue or a paper towel, and wipe out your beaker or measuring cup. Then toss it in hot soapy water and wash. This is truly the only method I’ve found that works.

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