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Lip Balms

Spa-inspired presents, including these handmade lip balms, can be created from basic kitchen ingredients and craft materials.




To make more than one kind of lip balm at a time, divide the recipe in half and scent and color the batches separately. For lip balms, we like to use essential oils that have an "edible" scent, such as citrus. Beeswax pellets are available at crafts stores.

Our how-to makes two .15-ounce tubes and two 1/2-ounce tins or pots.

Gift-Packaging Idea: Top cosmetic tubes and tins with custom labels: Water-slide decal paper is clear, making the design look as though it has been printed directly onto the container.

Resources: Similar containers, 8 1/2"-by-11" clear water-slide decal paper for ink-jet printers, Varnish, by Krylon Kamar, from

Get More Bath and Body Treatments and Learn About Essential Oils



  1. Step 1

    Put beeswax and carrier oil in jar, and close lid. Heat the jar in a pot of water over medium-low heat until wax has melted. Remove jar from pot carefully.

  2. Step 2

    Stir mixture with a metal spoon. Using a pipette, add essential oil, 1 drop at a time, until strength of scent is to your liking. Stir in lipstick shavings, 1 at a time, until desired shade is achieved and color is even throughout.

  3. Step 3

    Using another pipette, transfer lip balm to containers. Let set for 1 hour.

  4. Step 4

    Always fill containers before labeling them. Download clip-art labels, above, and print with an ink-jet printer onto water-slide decal paper. Spray with clear-coat varnish, and let dry.

  5. Step 5

    Cut out each label. Transfer to a bowl of water; soak until decals start to separate from paper backings, about 1 minute.

  6. Step 6

    Slide decals from papers and onto clean containers. Blot excess water with a paper towel. Let dry for 2 hours.

Martha Stewart Living, December 2008



Reviews (28)

  • Amanda R 15 Nov, 2013

    I made these for homemade Christmas baskets and all of my friends adored them! I used sweet almond oil, lavender oil, and olive oil with sweet orange essential oil and white beeswax. Bulk apothecary has great prices on plain tubes!

  • Tessadionnestokes 8 Dec, 2012

    If you are Looking for lip balm containers & don't want to wait for an online order....
    -get round single bead organizers with screw caps which are sold in local craft stores with jewelry making supplies.
    If you want small round labels for balm...
    -get Avery 1" round multi-use labels sold in office supply stores

  • vbick 17 Mar, 2012

    I found a great assortment from They also had waxes and waterproof printer labels for the tubes.

  • Kpotter33 10 Nov, 2011

    After an endless amount of searching for the small metal tins, I found some at Michael's and Hobby Lobby. They are in the wedding section at both stores. They appear to be used as favor tins, for candies and what not, but they will work great for this (although a little bigger then 1/2oz).

  • Barbara E 17 Oct, 2011

    I'm wondering where I could get containers to put the lip balm in. Any online sites or stores such as hobby Lobby (which I already checked)?

  • nancaroo 1 Apr, 2011

    to polly_po Look above the "Label-How to" for the labels for the labels Then, download them and save in your docos. Easy. :O)

  • polly_po 5 Feb, 2011

    How download Clip-Art Labels ???

  • JoyeJ 25 Jan, 2011

    Love this idea! Essential Oils should be food quality though. I have read through the Essential oil section and do not find any info on this. Regular fragrance may not be food safe, therefore should not be consumed. Also, for the carrier oil, coconut oil is wonderful for lip balms. I have used coconut oil just out of the jar. Blessings, JJ

  • DebLundquist 24 Jan, 2011

    From the photos included with the instructions, it appears they may have used Sunflower oil but others could probably be used. You would probably want to use "food grade" oils, rather than mineral or baby oil...

  • diefenbaker 24 Jan, 2011

    Greetings, I am wondering what type of oil is to be used as the 'carrier' oil? If any one has some ideas on this, I would appreciate the suggestions. These look like they would be wonderful gifts,Thanks again.

  • serenerd 6 Jan, 2011

    I would love to add sunscreen to this recipe. Has anyone tried that? And if so, what type did they use?

  • janetlouise51 5 Jan, 2011

    I made these and everyone I gave them to loved them. I created my own clip art for decals. They really turned out cute but I found out later that most of the decals fell off. Did anyone else have this problem? Any suggestions before I make them again?

  • AlexandraFromSydney 5 Jan, 2011

    I made this lip balm but without lipstick as they are full with chemicals. I used 100% organic strawberry powder and it works perfectly. It's a really good lip balm.

  • AuldWifie 23 Dec, 2010

    Have just made some lip balm as Christmas presents. Am cook-a-hoop with the result!

  • maravis2001 16 Jun, 2010

    this is great. I can

  • LeaWold 21 Dec, 2008

    I had to re-create the labels in Microsoft Publisher. I just wish I had found that font.

  • mamachristie 16 Dec, 2008

    I'm having the exact same problem. Have you figured it out yet?

  • lola8081 12 Dec, 2008

    Has anyone figured out how to use the clipart for the labels?? I have already made my lip glosses, and ordered my water-slide paper, now I just need to figure out how to make the labels. I can't figure out how to alter the clip-art to read what my flavor is. Please help!

  • LeaWold 11 Dec, 2008

    Does anyone know why water transfer paper is used in this project instead of adhesive labels? It seems like a lot of extra work to use these type of labels.

  • LeaWold 11 Dec, 2008

    Does anyone know why water transfer paper is used in this project instead of clear or white adhesive labels?

  • oceansrain 6 Dec, 2008

    You need to add shea butter to the beeswax or the mixture sets too stiffly

  • jip 6 Dec, 2008

    What is the diffrence between bees wax sheets, chunks and pellets?

  • beallgreen 2 Dec, 2008

    when i was on they said that soy was okay. The company has alot of the supplies needed for this project. and info too

  • FlyingPigExperience 2 Dec, 2008

    Will soy wax work? My local craft store has lots of that but no bees wax.

  • Kimberli21 19 Nov, 2008

    The lib balm tube clip art is now available. I found it on the list this morning 11-19-08. Thank you MSL for all of your help. It's great to know that someone was listening.
    Kimberli 21

  • Kimberli21 16 Nov, 2008

    I can't wait to make this lip balm with the oval tubes I just ordered, but I cannot find the clip art for the tubes. Please help me find the clip art. Kimberli

  • AmethystSamia 15 Nov, 2008


    Oval lip balm tubes with caps (#0807-12SP), $6.48 for 12; and Tins: Flat (pots) with rolled-edge covers (#5562-02SP), $12.12 for 12, and slide top in small (#5569-01SP), $17.76 for 12, and large, $22.56 for 12; from

    Similar containers, from

  • catlover44 13 Nov, 2008

    i think that your cookie magazines are really good.i love the christmas ones where there are cookies hanging everywhere!i live in ottawa, canada so where can i get those lip balm tubes that you showed on page 116 in Martha Stewart Living December 2008? molly,age 9