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DIY Vanilla Bean Lip Balm Recipe

I love giving tips on how to make DIY makeup that is free of harsh chemicals.

Here's how to make your own vanilla lip balm!

Here's how to make your own vanilla lip balm!

Make Homemade Lip Balm

Commercial lip balms are loaded with scary, unpronounceable ingredients. I am on a journey toward living a natural lifestyle without harmful additives like refined vegetable oils. Store-bought lip balm often contains harsh acids to “medicate” lips and is chock full of synthetic fragrances. These ingredients cause your lips to dry out, and you have to keep reapplying the lip balm, which is exactly what caused the dryness in the first place.

The basic DIY formula is one part oil to one part butter and one part beeswax.

Note: Adjust this basic formula as needed. If your lip balm is too soft, increase the amount of beeswax. Too hard? Add more butter or oil to the mixture to soften.

Madagascar Vanilla Bean Lip Balm Recipe


2 tbsp. cocoa butter

You could use mango butter or even coffee butter instead

2 tbsp. coconut oil

Or sweet almond oil

2 tbsp. beeswax

I use the pastilles for this recipe but you can also find beeswax at craft stores and health food shops. Natural beeswax is a rich honey yellow and smells incredible. You can also purchase bleached beeswax which does not have the golden tone or the fabulous aroma.

1 vanilla bean for flavor

You can also use several drops of essential oil or flavor oil. Mine came from the spice section of the grocery store. Buying these on Amazon is way cheaper but I was too giddy to wait.

Coral mica in powdered form for color

This came from Brambleberry with a lip balm making kit.

Plastic Lip balm pots

Bead storage pots work well or you can buy empty lip balm tubes on Amazon for cheap...or for frugalistas simply wash out an empty lip balm pot and reuse.


  1. Heat your ingredients (butter, oil and beeswax first) together in a glass Pyrex measuring cup in the microwave in 30 second bursts, to avoid overheating.
  2. Once your mixture is a liquid, add in your vanilla bean seeds. Slice the ends off the flattened bean, score the bean and scoop out the seeds.
  3. Add the powdered coral mica to the mixture and stir.
  4. Carefully pour the balm into the lip balm tubes or pots. Wrap a cloth or paper towel around the handle of your measuring cup. The handle is very hot and you need a steady hand for pouring.
  5. Let the tubes/pots cool. Your lip balm will solidify as it cools. The little specks in the mixture are the vanilla bean seeds.

Sweet Almond Oil and Mango Butter

Sweet almond oil can also be used for this recipe. It is high in vitamin E and antioxidants. Sweet almond oil is often used in massage oil because it is readily absorbed by the skin.

Mango butter has a long shelf life, about three years. It is a natural emollient with skin-softening, soothing and protective properties. Mango butter is a great source of essential fatty acids.

Add Attractive Packaging

If you have tested out your recipes and are ready to move on to selling your products, start with attractive packaging and accurate product labels.

If you have tested out your recipes and are ready to move on to selling your products, start with attractive packaging and accurate product labels.

Start With a Premade Lip Balm Base

Not quite ready to venture into Lip Balm Land? Start with a premade base like Brambleberry's Lip Balm Base. It is perfect for beginners because the ingredients are already measured and mixed for you. Simply add your favorite lip balm flavor oil and color, if desired. The lip balm base is easy to microwave. My Brambleberry lip balm kit included Cucumber Melon lip flavor oil, which smells heavenly.

I have experimented with adding bits of crayon for color but found the texture of the balm to be too waxy. I use Brambleberry's Coral Mica in powdered form for a hint of color. A tiny sprinkle of the powder is all you need. There are also lip balm kits available that take the guesswork out of mixing. Some of the flavor oils in these kits are too watered down for my taste. Essential oil is great for making peppermint lip balm. Steer clear of citrus oils which can cause photosensitivity.

Coconut Oil, Beeswax, and a Sense of Humor

Coconut oil changes from a solid to a liquid as the temperature increases. Beeswax is great for stabilizing your ingredients. The wax gives your lip balm stability. You can increase or decrease the amount of beeswax in your recipe. Beeswax is also great for making homemade salves. If you don't use enough beeswax, your salve will be more like petroleum jelly.

Beeswax is amazing but can be very messy. Do not use your regular cooking utensils and cookware for your crafting. While heating beeswax in my makeshift double boiler (a glass dish inside of a pot of boiling water), I ended up with a thick coating of wax inside my favorite spaghetti cooking pot. The best method for cleaning up beeswax is to heat it up. Wipe spills up immediately before the wax has time to harden. Once it hardens, you can scrape it off the countertop but it is nearly impossible to remove it completely.

Trust me, use separate containers for crafting lotions and potions. Always keep a sense of humor when cooking up a new recipe. I have had ever-growing bath bombs expanding all over my counters and sinks, wax drippage everywhere and a thousand other DIY disaster tales.

Vegan Lip Balm Ideas

Looking for a vegan lip balm recipe? I have come across recipes using soy wax and carnuba or candelilla wax, which are derived from plants. Know a great vegan lip balm recipe? I would love to check it out.


List All Your Ingredients

As you become confident in your DIY abilities, you may want to start selling your products to friends and at local craft shows. Here are a few tips from my own experience:

  • Label your product. List your ingredients in order from the largest to smallest amounts. Include the product weight and your contact information. Lip balm tubes are generally 15 ml in size.
  • Shrink wrap your tubes for safety. you can purchase shrink wrap bands online. Use a heat gun to keep unopened tubes secure so customers know their products are safe.
  • Do not use food coloring for lip coloring your lip balm. It is water based and does not mix with oils. I love the smell of vanilla and have tried to use vanilla bean paste, purchased in the baking section at Michael's. It did not mix in well and clumped together at the bottom of my concoction. The vanilla taste was not there either. Use powdered mica to add color instead. You can also use a bit of an old lipstick for color if you are making this for personal use.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.


Kimberley Clarke from England on September 07, 2015:

Mmm! This looks delicious! Great home made cosmetic tips, thank you!

Heather Walton (author) from Charlotte, NC on September 07, 2015:

Making lotions and potions is a great way to save money. Some of the ingredients are pricey initially (like beeswax) but you can use the same ingredients to make hand salve, foot cream and even aluminum free next DIY adventure!!!

peachy from Home Sweet Home on September 07, 2015:

this is cool and save money, great