Homemade lip balm is one of the easiest DIY projects if you’re new to making your own skincare items. This simple lip balm recipe is all natural, so soothing, and flavored with essential oils.
Have you ever flipped over a package of conventional lip balm and read the ingredients?
Try it sometime. Grab a package off the shelf, flip it over, and let your eyes scan the tiny words listed after Ingredients for things like parabens (which are endocrine disruptors), fragrances (which are allergens), and petroleum products like petrolatum (which are potentially toxic and contaminated).
In your lip balm. You know, the stuff that you put on your mouth a few times every day and inadvertently ingest when you lick your lips, take a drink, or eat a snack.
More and more natural lip balms are coming to the market, which is fantastic. You can find them from big brands and work-at-home moms, in your local big box store or on little Etsy shops.
And if you scan the package of natural lip balm, you’ll likely find a handful of easily recognizable ingredients that keep your lips soft while being safe to ingest.
But the cost? It’s usually two to three times more than the conventional brands with their questionable ingredients. That’s not so great.
It’s easily solved, though. Those simple ingredients in natural lip balm don’t just mean it’s a better alternative to conventional brands. They also mean that natural homemade lip balm is really easy to make yourself.
If you have 15 minutes and can measure, melt, stir, and pour, you have what it takes to try your hand at DIY lip balm.
Homemade Lip Balm: It’s Really That Easy
I realize that when you’re getting started with natural living, it’s easy to get overwhelmed and agonize over every little detail and ingredient in the things you eat and put on your skin.
Trying your hand a DIY project might seem like it’s overboard.
But trust me, homemade lip balm is so incredibly simple to make that even a young teenager can do it.
There was a time in my life when I had fewer children, fewer responsibilities, and too much naive ambition. If I could make it or DIY it, I did. Or at least tried.
I was making my own butter from cultured cream, canning tomatoes from the garden every summer, and even ventured into making homemade noodles a couple of times. Twice was enough for that.
As my family size and momma-wisdom grew, I learned that my time is too valuable to spend it making butter. Amen.
But homemade lip balm is different. It’s so easy that it just makes sense to make. And it’s fun!
When I realize we’re running out of homemade lip balm, I only need to set aside 15 minutes to make a new batch that will last our family an entire year.
Measure, melt, mix, and pour. Done.
Simple DIY Lip Balm Recipe
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The main ingredients in a natural lip balm are oil, wax, and usually a butter. You can make a lip balm with just oil and wax, but I prefer the texture much more when a moisturizing butter is added.
For this recipe, you’ll use coconut oil since it is readily absorbed into the skin without being too heavy, along with your choice of shea or cocoa butter. I personally like to use shea butter in most of my lip balm recipes except the Mint Chocolate flavor. Cocoa butter is a must to get a good chocolate flavor!
Essential oils provide the flavor, but it’s important to choose and add oils carefully. Since the final product is put on your mouth, I like to use organic essential oils. It’s also important to avoid phototoxic essential oils since lip balm is put on skin regularly exposed to the sun. More on that in a bit.
And of course, essential oils should be added at a gentle dilution since lip skin is very sensitive and lip balm is often reapplied throughout the day. These formulas are at 1% or lower, giving the lip balm flavor without the risk of irritation.
Of course, if you’re out of coconut oil, you can use substitute any vegetable oil suitable for topical use. Olive oil, sweet almond, or apricot kernel are other good options.
Lip Balm Flavor Options
- 20 drops peppermint (Mentha x piperita) essential oil
- 1/2 tsp cocoa powder, optional
Don’t forget to use unrefined cocoa butter and not shea butter for this flavor. The butter choice makes a big difference in the final flavor!
- 10 drops lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) essential oil
- 10 drops steam distilled* citrus essential oil, like grapefruit (Citrus paradisi), lemon (Citrus limon), or orange (Citrus sinensis)
*Most citrus essential oils are cold pressed or expressed, but these contain compounds known as coumarins. Coumarins often cause bad reactions (called phototoxicity or photosensitization) when the skin is exposed to sunlight after the oil is applied. Steam distilled essential oils are a better choice for lip balms because they don’t contain coumarins and are not phototoxic.
- 15 drops cinnamon leaf (Cinnamomum verum fol.) essential oil
- ½ Tbsp honey
- Get around 12 empty lip balm tubes ready to be filled. Set them up on your counter with the caps off or place them in a lip balm tube tray for extra convenience. I made lip balm for years before I got one of the tube trays, but I wish I’d had one from the start. They are so handy! Time: around 2 minutes
- Using a double boiler or a glass measuring cup in a pot of simmering water, combine the base ingredients. (If you’re using a glass measuring cup in a pan of simmering water, be sure to set a dishcloth or canning ring in the bottom of the pan so the glass cup isn’t in direct contact with the heat, like this.) Allow them to melt, stirring gently. Time: around 5 minutes
- Remove from the heat, allow to cool slightly, and add your essential oils. If the lip balm hardens or clumps, return to the heat and stir until melted again. Time: around 5 minutes
- Very carefully pour your lip balm into the tubes. Getting your lip balm into the tubes will take a couple of minutes. Let the lip balm rest and harden for 1-2 hours before moving or capping. Time: around 3 minutes
There are many more flavor combinations you can try with different essential oils, so use these as a springboard once you start feeling confident and adventurous.
See? It’s really just a simple measure, melt, stir, and pour process. No funny ingredients included and no special skills required. Fifteen minutes later you have a set of all-natural homemade lip balms to last you an entire year!
I’ll likely never make my own butter again, at least while there are still children in the house. But all-natural homemade lip balm flavored with essential oils is a DIY project too easy, fast, and enjoyable to skip.