I used to wait till my kids were sleeping to slather vaseline over their chapped lips because they hated any kind of moisturizer. So I invented this recipe to tempt them into voluntarily using chapstick, but it's so tasty and moisturizes so well I now make it for myself. The kids love it too.

UPDATE: If you're making these to give out as gifts, I recently designed a pop-up (and pop art) lip balm holder. You can get the template here. It comes in two versions, one with text and the other with a blank speech bubble in case you want to write your own, and it's very easy and quick to make if you've got a color printer and a pair of scissors.

Step 1: What you'll need

The first time I made this I used an old candle, but for this batch I bought 2 oz from the farmer's market for $1.75 -- definitely get the fresh wax if you can, the difference in flavor is stunning!

Cocoa butter
This can be found in any pharmacy. I've seen it at Rite Aid, Duane Read, etc, usually near moisturizers. This 1oz stick was $1.29

Almond oil
You could probably try other types of oil, but I would steer away from ones with heavy smells or flavors like olive oil -- you don't want to dissimulate the honey and chocolate flavor.

Vegetable glycerin (OPTIONAL)
You can find this in health stores, but I've also seen it in craft stores. This ingredient is what makes this chapstick more of a lip balm. Glycerin is a humectant, which means it will absorb humidity (from the air) to moisturize your lips. 

Vitamin E
This is also an oil, with the thickness of fingernail polish when it's pure. The oil helps moisturize, but the main purpose here is as a natural preservative. This can also be found in any pharmacy, but read the label carefully: the quantity named in this recipe is for PURE vitamin E, and sometimes it is sold mixed with glycerin. You can still use it if it's been cut, but you'll have to adjust the amounts: more vitamin E, less glycerin. If you don't feel like doing any math, just get the pure bottle. This bottle cost around $10 but you need so little it will last forever. You can also decide to skip it altogether if you think you'll be using the chapstick within 6 months to a year.

Dark unsweetened cocoa will give you the best flavor

Any kind is fine. This is also optional, it's mostly included for taste though, like the glycerin, it's also a humectant

The first time I made this I used plastic bottle tops and covered them with plastic wrap -- but since I made this batch as gifts, I bought empty chapstick tubes on ebay ($7.45 for 25 tubes, including shipping). Little tins would also work nicely and can be reused.
Is there some sort of substitute for lanolin? Like extra coco butter perhaps?
You can simply omit the lanolin. It adds a nice touch but it's optional.
<p>I LOVE THIS!!</p><p>My 3yr old daughter AND teenage son love it as well!</p><p>I think next time I'll use less beeswax so it'll be creamier in my little lip &quot;pots&quot; but as is it is perfect for chapstick containers. This has a wonderful texture and scent! </p>
This is hands down the best l<br>lip balm recipes I seen so far by including tablespoon measurements you've made it so much easier, now I don't have to go out and buy a scale thank you
is it colored
This is adorable
Where/how did you make the label?
Sorry, I didn't see this comment till now. The labels here were just plain old avery labels. As it turned out though, they were a bit too small and they fell off. If you use a label which can wrap all around the tube and then onto itself it will hold better.
I'm sorry to ask, but I'm having a bit of a problem. I don't have beeswax or glycerine, and I was wondering if there is something else safe to substitute them with. For beeswax, please don't say candles. (I am a little afraid of the candles because I don't know if it's right) I live in Asia, and I don't know if some of these suppliers ship here. Thanks in advance!
You can skip the glycerine altogether. As for the beeswax, though candles could probably work I wouldn't use them because they might contain ingredients besides paraffin wax (such as color, scent or maybe another chemical to make the candle burn more slowly) which you wouldn't want on your lips. However you can buy food grade wax either in specialized baking stores (it is sometimes used in candy making) or where they sell canning supplies. Though I've never tried it, the wax used to wrap up certain types of cheese would probably work too. It is colored, but it's got to be food grade so it should be perfectly safe. Hope this helps!
Thank you so much! That should be easier!
Hello!! Great Recipe! I want to do my Cocoa lip balm but Im a beginner in those things.. and I was trying to make another lip balm recipe with HONEY, but the honey lying in the bottom of pan. Someone suggested me to stir it in the last moment, when the mixture becomes cool but I believe that its apply to salves not to Lip balm. What is the secret? <br><br>PD: excuse my bad English ....
I would say the same thing as your friend, stir it in all well as possible as late as possible. You have to do it just at the right moment, after it has mostly cooled down but before it solidifies. Also don't use too much honey.
Thanks to share your knowledge!!
Actually, you don't really need to ADD the honey at the last minute, you just need to wait till your mixture has cooled as much as possible and then stir it really well before you pour it into your tubes.
I am so excited to try this recipe. I found it almost impossible to find little containers to put it in so i ordered some on www.mountainroseherbs.com. its an amazing website and you dont have to buy anything in bulk! <br><br>im going to try something crazy when i do this, and im going to add a little bit of cinnamon so it has warming properties and promotes big luscious plump red lips! i hope it works out and i will let you know!<br>
I just need kind of like good options for other oils to use. My Fiance is allergic to nuts so using Almond Oil would be a bad choice. Any suggestions?
Grape seed oil?
Grapeseed oil is another good one. :) And sesame seed oil but you'll want cold-pressed, not toasted. Otherwise he'll smell like Chinese food.
mineral oil
Thank you all so much for your suggestions! This is making me really excited to go home for the holidays. I hate college :(
you could use pumpkin oil.
Anything mild would work: castor oil would be good, or avocado oil if you want something you can find in a regular supermarket (and use on your salads). Depending on how allergic he is, read the label carefully because often these oils are made in the same facilities as nut oils. Also vegetable glycerin is derived mainly from coconuts, hopefully that wouldn't be a problem.
Maybe mineral oil. It is non animal based for or vegan friends, is relatively tasteless, food grade, and has an (I believe) indefinite shelf life. Good work! P.S. I'm still waiting for chocolate tooth paste!
My kids would always get the 1 Tb. eyedroppers when they got prescriptions. I use the old ones for drawing with pancake batter, basting, etc. I bet they would work well with this too. I bet using two and alternating them in a glass of hot water when one starts to clog would do the trick. Thanks belsey for posting this neat idea! I might have to try - I'm a chapstick addict and spend a LOT of money on them!
I'm a Chapstick addict as well xD maybe this versions are better because u actually know what is inside them :)<br>
I MUST do this :D I use two (sometimes more) chapsticks each month, this would save me a lot of money. How long do they last? Could I made enough for six months without the risk of getting poisoned?
It would probably start smelling funny before you risk poisoning. But looking at the shelf life of the ingredients makes me quite sure you risk nothing within six months (cocoa butter: 2 years -- honey: indefinite -- oil: 2 years -- beeswax: indefinite -- glycerin: 2 years). Then the vitamin E isn't technically a preservative but it's a powerful antioxidant so it should help prolong shelf life too. I must say though that I am not an exert in this matter and I don't make this to sell, so I can't guarantee anything. Maybe a chemist or a professional reading this could answer with more authority.
Well, I'm a chemist and your theory sounds right. Cocoa butter and oil are unsaturated fats, which are susceptible to degrade and rot. The reaction takes electrons, so an antioxidant does prevent the degradation reaction effectively... so the vitamin E does act like a preservative. For how long? That's what I wanted to know :( but oh well, I'll make some tries :), and 6 months is enough for now. Thanks for your answer! (I hope that made some sense, it's difficult to explain chemistry when your first language isn't English)
All that chemistry talk and you're asking us lowly crafters? ;) <br><br>I've made lip balms with similar recipes for the past few years. They have been good for at least a year. You should also be able store the backups in the fridge without issue. I've only had one tube go rancid and it was in the car for most of the summer. <br><br>If you aren't making chocolate, there are essential oils that will help as well. I make mine often times with peppermint and rosemary oil. Rosemary oil is another antioxidant, so it helps the vitamin E oil out on that front.<br><br>Beyond all of that, rancid oil on your lips won't poison you. It will just make you want to wash your lips really well. Blech! I did, in a moment of dire need, use that rancid tube. No bueno!
That was very clear, thank you! The softer version of this recipe makes a smaller quantity of balm, which I'm sure you'd use up within 2-3 months if you're using 2 or more tubes a month. This is so easy to put together once you've collected the ingredients that you might as well make a little less more often.
On a related note, I'm typically more concerned with bacteria growing (especially with tubs instead of tubes).&nbsp; I used Manuka Honey when I made mine, as it has natural antibiotic/antiviral properties.&nbsp; It's a little bit pricey, but tastes amazing, and will keep it clean.<br />
&nbsp;That's true... I originally put honey in for taste and for its humectant properties, but its benefits go beyond that. I've heard in can even be used as a dressing on surgical wounds... (some special sterile surgical honey from New Zealand, I wouldn't slather the kitchen honey bear over cuts).
&nbsp;I was wondering if this recipe colors your lips in any way, or if it is pretty sheer? Do you have any suggestions to add coloring? This is a great instructable. Thanks for the info!
&nbsp;If you really slather it on the lips and the mouth area, it WILL look like you're a sloppy chocolate eater, however if you put a normal amount just on the lips nobody will notice any coloring. I have experimented with color (using gel food coloring, burnt crushed almonds (great for brown eye shadow, but it gives a somewhat unpleasant burnt taste to lipstick) but I'm still fiddling with proportions and ingredients (I want to try iron oxide next). In other words, I can't give any definite answers yet, but if you experiment I'd love to hear how it turns out
You could try adding a little bit of lipstick (or shimmer! =D ) to the mix.<br />
wow wow wow!!!! this is a beautiful recipe. i just made it with certified organic beeswax (from south australia, available for about $15 for half a kilo on ebay to most aussies), organic creamed honey, organic unrefined coconut oil (in place of the almond oil), cocoa butter, and vitamin e oil. i was impatient to try this recipe and couldn't wait to find glycerin, and proceeded without, to no apparent detriment. the balm is beautiful! it smells AMAZING, feels lovely gliding on, and stays glossy for ages. is also great as an intensive hand treatment (mush it in and give yourself a nice, relaxing hand massage!)
I'm glad you like it... I think I'll update the instructable though, to say the glycerin is optional -- it does pretty much the same thing as the honey (humectant, sweetener), so you can easily omit one or the other.
the honey has separated to the bottom overnight, not sure how to correct that. i might leave it out next time as i don't need a sweet flavour as much as a sweet smell (given by the other ingredients).
The honey I used was liquid, not creamed, but the problem is more likely to be caused by not stirring enough when all the ingredients are melted... You can try melting it over again -- and yes, you can also simply omit the honey next time. By the way, I really like your instructable name!
it's also natural and super cheap: sure, buying all the ingredients (especially high-quality ones) makes the initial outlay more significant than even a nice burt's bees balm: i spent about $45 altogether, but the amount of ingredients i now have could make about $1,680 worth of squeal-aboutable lip product (no kidding: my calculations indicate that with these ingredients i can make 280 pots (blistex-size tubs, 7g) of balm, for which i could easily pay about $6 for)
if instead i laze out on the whole operation, or my friends get sick of receiving this as gifts (i dare you to find someone unhappy with receiving homemade organic lip balm!), i can use most of the stuff for other crafts. but that's unlikely :D :D ***** ible D)<br/>
where can i get the chapstick containers? i live in canada.
just get a chapstick and use it up, or cut it off, there not that expensive
I bought mine on ebay, and they sometimes ship to Canada... <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.specialtybottle.com/index.asp?PageAction=VIEWPROD&ProdID=304">This supplier</a> has a good selection of all sorts of bottles, but I'm not sure if they ship internationally. Search for soap making suppliers in Canada, they usually carry empty containers... I'm afraid that recycling old ones won't work unless you're willing to wait a LONG time (this recipe fills 11 tubes). Please don't throw out perfectly good chapstick to get the container!<br/>
I don't have the cocoa butter......but, I have vaseline. Will or can this do the same? I am new at this and was given different products to do this project with children and wasn't given a recipe. I found this recipe and have purchased Vit. E and Veggie Glycerine.
You could try, but then you should add more beeswax proportionately or the result will be too soft. Cocoa butter isn't hard to find in pharmacies though, and in NYC it only costs about $1.30 for an ounce -- more than vaseline, but then again vaseline doesn't smell or taste so good.
This is lovely :) I want to make it too!
those kinda remind me of shotgun shells, which you should not lick.
i like this, although i think i've read this in a book. I do have a question though, is there a difference in glycerin ( the kind that I've seen in the constipation aisle and "vegetable glycerin" if so where can you find vegetable glycerin.

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Bio: I am a paper engineer, writer, maker and chemist wannabe. In addition to pop-up cards I design and build furniture, lights, costumes or whatever I ... More »
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