Introduction: All-natural Waste-free Lip Balm

I have recently become increasingly passionate about reducing my ecological footprint. From making my own yogurt and granola bars to choosing herbal tea over canned carbonated water, I have been attempting to be more environmentally-mindful. Limiting single-use items, such as plastic lip balm containers, is actually a quite easy and inexpensive task. Through this simple Instructable, I hope that you can be inspired to assess the items you use daily to see if there is something that you can alter to limit unnecessary waste :)


You will need:

  • 3 tablespoons beeswax beads (I got mine in the bulk section of my grocery store)
  • 3/4 teaspoon beet powder (optional, also from the bulk section)
    • alternatively: the same amount of ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tablespoon coconut oil (I used refined due to its lack of flavor)
  • 1/2 - 1 tablespoon vegetable oil of choice (I used canola oil due to its mild nature, but you could use olive oil or your favorite liquid oil)
  • 4-5 drops essential oil of choice (I used lavender)
  • an empty and clean lip balm tube (I used an old one and removed excess balm with a cotton swab)
  • a small jar for excess balm
  • a small funnel
  • measuring spoons
  • a microwave-safe bowl
  • a spoon for stirring

Step 1: Melting the Ingredients Together

Firstly, mix the 3 tablespoons of beeswax beads with the 1/2 tablespoon of coconut oil and the 1/2 to 1+ tablespoon of vegetable oil in a microwave-safe bowl. The amount of vegetable oil that you add depends on your personal preference to how "buttery" you would like your balm to be. Only using 1/2 tablespoon of the vegetable oil yields a very stable and relatively waxy balm that is ideal for the winter months. Using 1 tablespoon or more of the vegetable oil yields a softer, less waxy balm.

Heat the mixture in 30 second intervals at 50-60% power (stirring after each interval) until the mixture is melted and homogeneous. At this point, add the 4-5 drops of essential oil of choice and the beet powder or cinnamon. I added the beet powder for its red hue, but I also think that it would be interesting to experiment with slightly grainier substances, such as roughly-ground sea salt, to use as a lip exfoliant. If the mixture hardens and is not pour-able, heat again in short intervals until it liquefies.

Step 2: Pour It In!

Working efficiently, pour the melted mixture into the clean lip balm tube. To do this with little mess, set a small funnel in the tube and, if possible, have another person hold the tube as you pour in the wax. Make sure that the tube is rotated so that the bottom of the wax cylinder is at its lowest position. Pour the rest of the wax mixture in a separate jar. Though I plan to use the balm straight out of the jar once I finish the balm in the tube, you can also re-melt the mixture in the jar and add it to your empty tube.

Let the tube and jar sit at room temperature until the balm has hardened (around 20-30 minutes).

Step 3: Enjoy!

Enjoy this lip homemade lip balm! Please experiment with different essential oils, ratios of oils and waxes, and mix-ins to suit your preference. This is just a basic recipe from which I hope you can creatively diverge!

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