Personal Care

Healthy DIY Lip Balm

Lip balm is extremely easy to make and here are some reasons why you should.




I can proudly say that I don’t have many addictions in my life: I’m not addicted to cigarettes, coffee, chocolate or any other of the main culprits. But I’ve had one addiction ever since I’ve started using it as a teenager: lip balm!

I always had to have it close, use it frequently and I couldn’t go to sleep without applying some. Now that I pay very close attention to what I put in and on my body I understand this addiction much better: these products are designed in a way that only give short term relief but then need to be reapplied.

Since I’ve changed to natural lip balm and even making my own (which is much cheaper and sooo easy) my lips are much better hydrated and I need to use it much less frequently.

If we take a look at what is actually in conventional lip balm this makes sense.

The other reason why I’d avoid them is that many of the ingredients are toxic. Since the skin on our lips is so thin these can be easily absorbed or even swallowed. According to Wikipedia, these are the most common ingredients in commercial lip balm:

Beeswax or carnauba wax, camphor, cetyl alcohol, lanolin, paraffin, and petrolatum, among other ingredients. Some varieties contain dyes, flavor, fragrance, phenol, salicylic acid, and sunscreens.

Bees and carnauba wax, lanolin: these ingredients are natural and fine to use.

Petrolatum (aka petroleum jelly) and paraffin: petrolatum is derived from fossil fuels and depending on the refining process might contain PAHs which are ‘probable carcinogens’. It is water repellent and can┬áseal your pores in order to lock moisture in. This may keep┬áthe pores from breathing. Some people have also reported allergies to petroleum jelly. As I’ve said, it depends on the refining process whether it is toxic or not but in any case it is not a sustainable product as it’s derived from crude oil. So I would say it’s best avoided.

Fragrances: manufacturers don’t have to disclose what is in a fragrance. Therefore anything could be hidden if you see the word ‘fragrance’. Many synthetic fragrances contain phthalates which are hormone disruptors. Many people react to them, so they’re best avoided. Natural fragrance might be fine but some people even react to those.

Flavor: similar to fragrance, anything could be hidden in ‘flavor’

Dyes: can be very toxic and often contain heavy metals. Animal studies have found synthetic dyes to be almost always carcinogenic.

Phenol, cetyl alcohol, camphor, salicylic acid, menthol: these are all ingredients that seem to cause irritation in many people. They are also found to be soothing at first but quickly dry up and then require reapplication. Phenol is also a chemical that has been shown to cause kidney, liver and nervous damage when applied regularly.

Sunscreens: chemical sunscreens have been shown to act as hormone disruptors. Natural sunscreens like zinc oxide are fine.

I do a lot better with natural lip balm and also find that I need to use and buy a lot less. I also feel like they actually hydrate my lips rather than just soothe them for a short time. There are a few brands I can recommend if you prefer to buy a natural lip balm. However, my recipe is super easy to make and it only takes a few minutes. One tub also lasts for many months. All you need is coconut oil and beeswax. ingredients for lip balm

Healthy DIY Lip Balm

Healthy DIY Lip Balm

Ingredients

  • 1 Tbsp Beeswax
  • 2 Tbsp coconut oil

Instructions

  1. Melt the beeswax and the coconut oil and stir together
  2. Pour into a small jar and let cool

Sources:

  • http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lip_balm https://ca.shine.yahoo.com/5-scary-cosmetic-ingredients-explained.html
  • http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-16333/to-heal-chapped-lips-avoid-these-harmful-lip-balm-ingredients.html
  • http://www.ecolips.com/news-and-events/what-ingredients-to-avoid-in-lip-balms
  • http://lifehacker.com/5974745/know-which-ingredients-in-lip-balm-actually-cause-dry-lips
  • http://live-clear.combwhatsxinxyourxlipbalmxyxingredientsxavoidb
  • http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18570050

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