CQ’s uncomplicated lip balm

Having shown you the steps in making a starter lip balm in another post, I’d now like to share with you a recipe I developed myself, after trying out different ratios and combinations. I call it CQ’s uncomplicated lip balm, as it contains only five ingredients (six if you include the vitamin E). 😊

Before I get on to the recipe and instructions, here’s some information about the ingredients I’m using for my lip balm, which are: avocado oil, apricot kernel oil, beeswax, mango butter, shea butter and natural vitamin E (optional).

For my carrier oils, I have chosen to combine a rich oil (avocado) with a lighter one (apricot kernel oil). Avocado oil, which contains a range of vitamins and fatty acids, is well known for its moisturising and regenerative properties. It is high in antioxidants. It has a higher penetration rate compared to some other oils, so it helps to keep the skin really hydrated. The fact that it is a slower-absorbing oil makes it a good skin protector too. Similarly, apricot kernel oil makes a good emollient with its range of essential fatty acids and vitamins. It is a fast-absorbing oil, which makes it an ideal choice to balance out the richness of the avocado oil.

For my butters, I am using mango and shea butters. Mango butter is taken from the seed kernels of the mango. Rich in vitamins and minerals, it nourishes and conditions the skin. Shea butter, containing an important fatty acid, is a popular ingredient for skincare. It is extracted from the nut of the African shea tree. As its texture is rather creamy and thick, shea butter can leave your lips feeling a bit sticky if used on its own. This is why I am using mango butter as my main butter, for it has a firmer and less fatty feel than shea butter, which means the final product will have a less sticky feel on the lips.

The beeswax is what keeps the lip balm solid (which is especially important if you like to keep it in your pocket or if you live in a hot climate!). It also acts as a barrier on your skin to help keep in the moisture. Depending on its quality, the wax can give the lip balm a natural, lovely, subtle floral and honey scent. It is considered as both an emollient and a thickener.

[As an antioxidant, natural vitamin E helps slow down the oxidation process in the oils (which is what causes rancidity) – so I use it to help extend the shelf life of the balm, but it is optional.]

The key ingredients of my uncomplicated lip balm surrounding the finished product: (clockwise from the top) apricot kernel oil, beeswax, shea butter, avocado oil, mango butter. Notice how both oils are fairly light in colour, while the mango butter is whiter in colour than the shea.
The key ingredients of my uncomplicated lip balm surrounding the finished product: (clockwise from the top) apricot kernel oil, beeswax, shea butter, avocado oil, mango butter. Notice how both oils are fairly light in colour, while the mango butter is whiter in colour than the shea.

Ingredients

  • 41.5g cold-pressed refined avocado oil
  • 21g cold-pressed apricot kernel oil
  • 15g beeswax (chipped from a larger block or pellets)
  • 15g refined mango butter
  • 9g unrefined organic shea butter
  • 0.5g (8 drops) natural vitamin E (optional)

The above will make 102g of lip balm (equivalent to around 6 pots of lip balm, each weighing roughly 17g).

Steps

  1. Prepare a double boiler by filling one-third of a saucepan with water. Place it over the stove and bring the water to boil.
  2. Lay out your empty lip balm pots on a small tray or plate, and leave the tray nearby.
  3. Once the water is boiled, reduce the heat to a simmer. Carefully place a glass/heatproof measuring jug (or a glass mug) inside the saucepan – make sure the water doesn’t spill out!
  4. Add the beeswax to the glass jug, stirring slowly until it melts.
  5. Then, add in both butters and stir until they melt.
  6. Turn off the heat. Add in both oils and stir until everything is mixed and the mixture resembles a lovely golden colour.
  7. Add in the drops of vitamin E (optional). Take the jug out of the saucepan, wipe the base dry with a kitchen towel to prevent water from accidentally dripping into your mixture. Keep stirring the mixture so it doesn’t harden.
  8. Carefully pour the warm mixture into your empty pots – make sure you don’t spill it on your skin!
  9. Place a lid loosely on top of each pot. Transfer your tray of lip balm to the fridge and let it set for 4-5 hours.
  10. The lip balms should now be ready!

Now that you know what goes into my uncomplicated lip balm and how it is made, please give the recipe a try and let me know how you get on!

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