November 13, 2007
Making Chapstick

I'm going to try making homemade chapstick this Christmas season as gifts. Here is a link that I found for the following recipe:

Basic Recipe

* 2 - 2 1/2 teaspoons oil/butter

* 1/2 teaspoon beeswax

* 1/2 teaspoon flavoring (optional)

* 1/2 teaspoon extra moisturizers (optional)

* 1/8 teaspoon preservative

* 1/4 teaspoon color (optional)

With any recipe, begin by melting your oils, butters, and beeswax in a heat-resistant container. Pyrex measuring cups work especially well for this, as they can be put in the microwave and have pour spouts to prevent spilling. Alternately, you can use a small pot to heat the ingredients. Once they have all melted, allow three to five minutes for the mixture to cool. The purpose of this is to preserve later ingredients, which may be damaged by high temperatures. Use the cooling period to clean and sterilize your lip balm containers. Stir in any flavorings, colorants, and other optional ingredients. While the mixture is still a liquid, pour it into your prepared containers. You can either purchase these in the cosmetics department of your local store or reuse old chapstick jars. Once the lip balm has cooled and solidified, it is ready for use. Remember to keep the finished product in a cool place or it will melt.

Ingredients Suggestions

As mentioned earlier, there are several ingredients that make excellent lip balms. Olive oil, castor oil, apricot kernel oil, sweet almond oil, cocoa butter, coconut oil, jojoba oil, and even petroleum jelly are beneficial to the skin. If you wish to use a blend of several oils, simply use them in a 1-1 or 2-1 ratio. Each oil that you choose will add a unique scent to the finished product; coconut and almond oil are especially popular for this reason. Beeswax can be either white or yellow depending on your preferences. Browse the baking aisle of your local grocery store for a delicious selection of flavoring oils from strawberry to peppermint. Alternately, you may wish to try adding a few melted chocolate chips or several drops of vanilla extract for a decadent balm. The most popular and readily available preservative is vitamin E, which can be used in a quantity of one capsule per batch. However, several essential oils -- most popular among them being orange, grapefruit, and lemon -- can be used instead to extend the life of the product and add a delightful citrus scent. As these are strongly concentrated oils, only use two to three drops per batch. Consider amplifying the moisturizing qualities of your lip balm with a drizzle of honey or a few drops of calendula essential oil. The plant from which it is derived is reputed for its moisturizing and healing properties, making it an excellent chapstick additive. Finally, you may wish to add tint to your balm. Check out the internet or local health food stores for cosmetics-grade pigments or simply add a bit of an old lipstick for a splash of color.

Posted by kjohnson at November 13, 2007 01:36 AM