If you’re trying to avoid dyes, artificial flavors, and chemicals in your food, you also want to avoid them in your chapstick and lotions. Chapstick easily finds its way right into your child’s mouth as they lick their lips or eat, and anything you put on to your skin gets absorbed right into your skin and enters the bloodstream. There are a few products out there like Burt’s Bees, Badger, and Ava Anderson that sell chemical-free chapstick, and we use Desert Essence Fragrance Free for lotion, but if you love do-it-yourself projects, you’ll love making your own! It’s very simple and you can easily make enough to last the whole year, with some left over for gifts!
We just made some chapstick and lotion bars for teacher gifts. I also made some eye makeup remover as well. For that recipe, visit my recipe blog here. I purchased my supplies and ingredients from www.bulkapothecary.com but you can find some of these things at your local health food store.
Chapstick Recipe: (makes about 5 chapstick tubes)
1 TB of beeswax (I got the pellets)
1 TB of shea butter
1 TB of coconut oil (not fractionated – I used Tropical Traditions which I order online)
9 drops of essential oil (vanilla, orange, or peppermint, etc.)
Combine all the ingredients in a small glass mason jar and put the lid on it. You want to melt the oils in a pan using a double broiler method. Last year, I did this by placing a stainless steel bowl with some water in it, over a saucepan of boiling water. Then place your jar in the bowl. You just don’t want your jar to sit directly on the bottom of the pan.
This year, I used my Instant Pot! 🙂 An Instant Pot is a pressure cooker, similar to a crock pot. I filled the pot up with water – about enough to cover about 3/4 of the jar. Also place your trivet/rack in the pot. Then I turned the Instant Pot on to “Steam” for 5 minutes. When it was done, I did a quick release to let the pressure and steam out (be careful) and turned the Instant Pot off. I placed my jar in the pot with the jar lid on, closed the lid and let it sit for about 8-10 minutes, or until all the oils were melted. The beeswax takes the longest to melt.
When it’s done melting, take the jar out with a towel or pot holder and add your essential oils and stir. We’ve also made coffee vanilla chapsticks. The coffee and vanilla both have a brown color to them so you will see some brown specks in the chapstick. This year we tried citrus – which was equal amounts of lemon, orange, and grapefruit. They turned out good. Plant Therapy has new blends called Sugar Cookie (vanilla and lemon), and Peppermint Latte (peppermint, coffee, and vanilla) that I’d like to try in chapstick some time.
Be sure to lay down some wax or parchment paper down on your table to catch any spills. Then quickly pour the contents into your containers. The oils will start to harden quickly. If you need to, you can place the jar back in the hot water to melt again. I bought chapstick tubes from Bulk Apothecary. It was cheap to buy 50 tubes and we love them! Be careful not to overfill the tubes. I also purchased chapstick labels that fit the tubes perfectly. I still have yet to figure out how to print on the labels! Oh well. For now, I just use a Sharpie marker.
If you don’t want to buy a chapstick holder, you can also use an egg carton flipped upside down. Someone just posted this on the Safe Essential Oils Recipe Facebook group. Very smart! Or a styrofoam plate flipped over works too!
If you want to make it even easier, you can use round lip balm containers. I like the chapstick tubes because then you don’t get your finger oily putting it on. But the first time I made chapstick, I used the round containers. Last year for Christmas, I found a cute penguin lip balm at Justice. I emptied and cleaned out the contents and added homemade lip balm for my daughter’s stocking. She loved it!
We’ve never had an issue with coconut oil drying out our skin, but if you want to avoid coconut oil, here’s another recipe that we used to make chapstick last year. It worked well. I tripled the recipe.
Chapstick Recipe #2:
1 tsp beeswax
1 tsp cocoa butter
3 tsp jojoba oil
1 vitamin E capsule (squeeze out contents – add after melting other oils)
3 drops of essential oil
And if you’re making chapstick, you might as well make lotion bars too while you’re at it!
Lotion Bar Recipe:
1/2 cup coconut oil (not fractionated)
1/2 cup beeswax
1/2 cup shea butter or cocoa butter, or a combination of both
1 tsp vitamin E oil (optional)
48 drops of essential oil (lavender, orange, vanilla, etc.)
Melt the oils the same as above, then pour into molds. You can get silicone or plastic molds from the craft or baking section of most stores, Hobby Lobby, or from Bulk Apothecary. They have some really cute ones. We went with roses and some Christmas molds. Allow to set for about an hour then pop out. Done! I wrapped ours in siran wrap for the teacher gifts, then stuck a label on the back. I used an Anti-Cellulite synergy blend from Plant Therapy, Sweet Orange for another, and lavender for the third set. I added “Soft Skin” blend to all of them as well. Then I got some little bags from the Dollar Store, and I had some small tins left over from Big Lots from last year.
You can add whatever essential oils you’d like, but for lotion bars, try to stay away from strong smelling scents. Lavender or orange are popular choices. My daughter loves peppermint so I’m going to make her peppermint. You can rub peppermint oil over your liver if you have a headache or stomachache. Or rub on the back of the neck for fever or headache. This will be nice to have on hand since they are already diluted with a carrier oil. Be careful with peppermint oil around young kids or babies. Can cause breathing difficulties. If any hotter oil causes burning, just add some coconut oil or other carrier oil to dilute it more.
If you have a child with eczema or other skin issues, lotion bars are great. Lavender helps with itching and yeast. Tea tree kills yeast and fungus (though not as nice smelling – I would pair with lavender). Coconut oil kills yeast as well. There’s an essential oil blend called “Funky Feet” you could use and have your child put the lotion on their feet at night. Lemongrass and frankincense are good for arthritis. And the list goes on.
If you are Feingold stage one, you can leave out the essential oils if you want or choose oils that are low in salicylates. Some kids react to any scents, whether they are stage one or stage two so you’ll have to test them out first.
In the teacher’s bags, I also included a write up with the ingredients, as well as the recipe for the eye makeup remover in case they wanted to refill it when they ran out. Below is what I wrote up. I copied what was on the essential oil bottles.
Store lotion bars in a cool place in a baggie or container. If left in a warm place, can start to melt. Chapsticks can start to melt if left out in the sun or in your pants pocket. The heat from your skin will activate the lotion bars to melt when rubbed on your skin. These will last about a year.
Ingredients: Organic coconut oil, cocoa butter, organic shea butter, beeswax, and essential oils.
Anti-Cellulite Synergy Blend : This cellulite formula works by enhancing circulation and allowing the body to naturally cleanse itself and eliminate retained water. It is most effective when massaging into the cellulite area using a carrier oil such as olive oil or body lotion. (Carrier oil has already been added to the lotion bar.)
Contains: Grapefruit, lavender, rosemary, fennel, juniper, bergamot, and German chamomile.
Soft Skin Synergy Blend: Everyone hates wrinkles and dry skin. This special synergy is a blend of essential oils that have been known to be helpful to skin, especially when used in a hand cream. Providing nourishment to the skin is one of the vital components in helping it stay soft and healthy.
Contains: Frankincense, carrot seed, lavender, rosewood, neroli, fennel, rosemary, and lemon.
Organic Sweet Orange and Soft Skin Lotion Bars
Sweet orange is most commonly known for its wonderful, uplifting, and calming scent. When diffused it can help with depression, anxiety, stress, and can also improve the aroma of a stale room. It can also help build your immune system to fight off a sickness. Add to a carrier oil and apply to the abdomen to help with digestion (carrier oil already added to the lotion bars). When applied over the liver, orange oil is known to increase the body’s production of glutathione, which helps the body eliminate toxins.
Organic Lavender and Soft Skin Lotion Bars
Lavender Population is known for its many therapeutic properties including being calming, relaxing, and a stress reliever. Diffuse to help reduce anxiety, stress, and promote sleep. It can also be added to a carrier oil to help with minor burns and reduce scarring and other skin issues including eczema and psoriasis.
Ingredients: Organic coconut oil, organic shea butter, beeswax, Sweet Orange organic oil or vanilla oil. Citrus contains lemon, orange, and grapefruit oil.
Essential oils from www.planttherapy.com.
And this was the aftermath! 🙂 Glad I only have to make these once a year! Although it is fun!
To clean your spoons and jars, I use a paper towel to wipe the oils off first, then rinse in warm water and then put in the dishwasher. Coconut oil will harden as it dries so you don’t want it to clog up your drains. I also use old jars (from spaghetti sauce, etc.) sometimes that I’ve washed so I can just throw those away when I’m done.
I’m going to make several different flavors of chapstick and lotion bars and put them in a basket for my guests to choose what they want when they come over on Christmas. I was going to make some bath salts for the teachers too but ran out of time. Next year! 🙂
During our Treating ADHD Naturally Conference in Chicago in May, we’ll be discussing the various uses for essential oils for ADHD, anxiety, cleaning, and more! Our conference brochure will include some of our favorite essential recipes and their uses.
Author of “All Natural Mom’s Guide to the Feingold Diet” available on Amazon.
Blogging about the Feingold Diet and all things natural at www.allnaturalmomof4.com.
To learn about all the natural ways to treat ADHD, register for the “Treating ADHD Naturally“ Conference coming to Chicago on May 25th, 2016!