I love lip balm. And if Martha makes lip balm, I want to make it. And so I became determined to make myself some. This is what I did:
First I went to Hobby Lobby. (I saw the lip balm stuff there last year while making soap.) This is what I found:
a kit to make lip balm (oil and beeswax) $4.47
containers:4 tubs and 4tubes $4.47
So, for about $10 you can make 8 things of lip balm.
Being the bargain shopper that I am, this was totally unacceptable. Therefore, I journeyed to Michael's. I found their prices to be cheaper than Hobby Lobbys but they did not have what I needed in stock. Every subsequent trip to Michael's thereafter has proved that they never have anything in stock. Its a wonder that they stay in business!!
So I checked out Vitamin Cottage. I found everything I needed (except the tubes) and for a lot cheaper.
Health Food prevails once again.
I started searching the internet high and low for lip balm tubes. I found them on ebay, 50 for $12.95.
I found lots and lots of recipes online, google and I spent a lot of time together. After all this research, I started to get the basic concept. Although I haven't tried the simple wax and oil recipe, it seems that it wouldn't be as creamy and smooth and I've read that it is very greasy. I don't know maybe I should try it, I just don't want to waste ingredients. So here's the basic recipe. I don't remember where I found it:
20% Beeswax (I used unbleached and it gave the lip balm that I didn't color a nice yellowish color. I'm not sure how they bleach the wax, but I would be leery of some thing that wasn't bleached naturally. I bought the wax in one ounce bars, cut what I needed - in this case 1/4 of a bar - and grated it on a teeny, tiny box grater made for grating spices.)
25% Solid Oil (Solid, at room temperature, has almost the same consistency of room temperature butter, maybe a little thicker. I used Shea Butter**, another good one is Coconut Oil. ** Edit: I've changed my mind about Shea Butter, it sucks! It is actually really smooth, but makes your lip balm grainy. I now use Coconut oil with no problems.
15% Brittle Oil (Just like it sounds, is firm and solid at room temperature. The consistency is just like a very hard clod of dried mud. I used Cocoa Butter. This I also grated on the baby box grater and then mashed into the measuring spoon to get an accurate measurement.)
40% Liquid Oil (Should be cosmetic grade which is cold pressed. I think cold pressed olive oil from the grocery store is ok but I haven' t tried it. I found good information about why cold pressed oil is healthier in cooking here, which is always good to know.)
Vitamin E oil: (optional, but acts as a natural preservative. I have also been told that it makes a difference in the quality of the lip balm but in my second batch I forgot it and I can't really tell.)
My recipe: makes 7 .15oz tubes
1 1/2 tsp. Beeswax (.25oz)
1 3/4 tsp. + 1/8 tsp. Coconut Oil
1 1/8 tsp. Cocoa Butter
3 tsp. Sweet Almond Oil
3 Caps Vitamin E, oil squeezed out
Melt every thing in a small jar set in a pan of boiling water (don't melt over direct heat, it could burn or the wax could catch on fire!) Stir frequently. When melted (don't cook too long! use as soon as melted to avoid grainy-ness), add fragrance (essential oils work well like lemon or peppermint- start with a few drops and work up from there you can always add more, or you can order flavors from Majestic Mountain Sage or I got some off ebay) and color if desired (a tiny bit of lip stick works well, but remember it shows up lighter when cooled.) I also added some shimmer. (I used some shimmering makeup powder that was kind of golden. The key here is to test it for gritty-ness. Put on some plain chapstick or lip gloss and then rub some of the shimmering powder on your lips. If you can't feel the grit, it will work. My shimmer, so far, has been very subtle as I have not wanted to overdo it and waste my precious tubes (I only have 50!)
Next fill the tubes completely to the very top. It contracts when cooled and form a little dip but you don't want to re-fill this, the layers might not adhere to each other and the top layer could slip off. It's also best not to re-melt the lip balm, it will get grainy. Let sit without moving until completely set up.
Label your lip balm! People are so impressed by it and it is so easy to do. I used clear Avery labels #8667 with the Avery label maker program (free! - not for mac's though). Make sure you list ingredients, some people are allergic to cocoa butter or nuts.
enjoy your luscious lips!
A word about Slider Tins:
I love them! My first order was from a company called Clay Alley (I'm not even going to give you a link since they are more expensive than my new place.) The new place is called Alyssa's Soap Cottage. Not only are the slider tins cheaper there, they also come with a little shrink wrap sleeve. These first one's I thought would be great to hand paint, but it turns out that painting them wasn't the best idea. The paint just chipped off. My next course of action is to design and order professional vinyl labels. I'm not sure from where, though.