Tinted Lip Balm

Lipstick is not for everyone, and it’s certainly not for every occasion either. Tinted lip balm, on the other hand, is perfect when you want a toned down natural look, and it’s great to use everyday. It makes a great gift too! You can make this berry beautiful lip balm for under R10, and it’ll be ready in just 10 minutes.

Recipe variations & substitutes

Oils & Waxes:

You can simply substitute the shea butter or sweet almond oil for any other butter and liquid oil equivalent. However, you need wax to harden the oil into a ‘balmy’ texture. If you are vegan, you may substitute the bees wax for soy wax or carnauba wax.

My general rule of thumb for any lip balm recipe is to use equal parts of a butter, wax and oil. So you can simply combine one part of any butter (eg. shea butter, cocoa butter, avocado butter etc.), with one part of any wax (eg. bees wax, carnauba wax, soy wax etc.) and one part of any liquid carrier oil (eg. olive, sunflower, grapeseed, sweet almond etc.). Therefore, the recipe is 1 part butter: 1 part wax: 1 part oil. That should simplify things for you in terms of what you can substitute. So the recipe I’ve shared above is just my personal favourite combination of butters, waxes and oils.

Iron oxide:

Iron oxides and mica powders really are the best way to colour a product. The second best option is to use a natural eye shadow or blush in a shade that you like and use a pinch of that powder instead (it contains mica and iron oxide).

Melting everything in my homemade double boiler setup.

Cost & Shelf Life

Cost Price: R10 per 15ml (3 standard lip balm tubes)
Lasted me about:
 3 months (using every morning)
Estimated shelf life: 6 months without natural vitamin E oil, and about 1 year with natural vitamin E oil.

*Costs accurate at time of writing. Costs based on retail prices.


  • Oxide pigments may streak when the colour is applied. Make an extra effort to disperse these pigments properly with thorough mixing.
  • You have to work fast, otherwise the balm will harden before you can pour it into the mould.

Cherry on top

The cost price of this lip balm works out to be a tenth of the average price of tinted lip balm in stores (Eg. Labello goes for about R28 for 5ml, whereas this recipe costs about R3.50 for 5ml). Not to mention that this recipe is about thirty times cheaper than the average price of natural tinted lip balms (Mineral Fusion tinted lip balm retails for R299 for 3g, which I think is just crazy!).


  • Unrefined organic shea butter: provides essential fatty acids and nutrients required for collagen production. Softens skin and reduces wrinkles (buy here).
  • Bees wax: moisturises and retains moisture in skin for longer by forming a protective barrier on the skin. (buy here).
  • Sweet almond oil: Moisturises and nourishes cracked lips, and the vitamin E content is anti-ageing and treats sun damage (buy here).
  • Red Iron oxide: is a natural mineral pigment used to colour cosmetic products. Rust is iron oxide – so basically, iron oxides are different colours of rust ground up and purified. (buy here)
  • Zinc oxide: is a natural mineral pigment used to colour cosmetic products, and is a common ingredient in natural sunscreens to reflect UV rays. (buy here)

Not sure where to find these ingredients? My shopping guide may help you.

How do you like this tinted lip balm? Let me know in the comments below.

Are you new to essential oils? Please read how to use them safely.


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