Have you ever had a massage, facial, or any kind of body work really and noticed that the smell of the spa stays with you and continues to relax you even after you've left? With allergies and being one who doesn't like to have to take medication, I've always been something of a believer of aromatherapy.
Carrying around essential oils or cloth scented with them isn't really practical. I picked up a "stress stick" at Reading Terminal in Philly a few months ago, and while I loved the idea, something in it didn't agree with my skin. I remembered my mom having solid perfume when I was a kid, so I thought I'd take a shot at combining the two! I had made lotion bars before (which I'm still using up, by the way - the store in the fridge wonderfully!) so I decided to apply the same idea to "stress sticks."
I knew that to keep the lotion bars solid, it was 1 part wax to 1 part oil, so I picked up some supplies and finally had some time today to melt them all together!
I used all organic ingredients - coconut oil, hemp oil, beeswax pellets, and essential oils. I studied up using essential oils quite a bit before putting this together, and all I can say is... pretty much anything goes. I decided to include top, middle, and bottom notes, and knowing that I wanted this to be used for stress relief, went with Ylang Ylang, Vanilla, Lavender, and Lemongrass. I found many different sites that explained that for the best balance, you need to vary the amount of each oil you use to get the best fit, and blended them before hand.
I set up a double boiler using a pot and a measuring glass. I wanted the measuring glass so that I would have the spout to pour the mixture into tubes. You could just as easily use a mason jar and a dropper. That would require some thinking ahead though, which I don't always do well.
The tricky part was keeping the water hot enough, but not too hot on our electric stove. Once the water was warm, I put in the beeswax and stirred it pretty constantly with a chopstick until it was almost completely melted.
Once it was almost liquid, I added coconut oil, and when it melted, hemp oil. Once they were all in the pot and nice and melty, I added the essential oil blend. Once you add the oils, you need to get them into whatever they will live in pretty quickly so that you don't cook the essentials out!
I added the essential oils with a "30% top notes, 50% middle, and 20%" balance and oh my - let me tell you how wonderful the house STILL smells!
Once the oils were sufficiently blended in, I lifted the measuring glass out, wiped the bottom, and poured into lip balm containers.
Before I added the essential oils, I actually poured one container just so I could see the texture/consistency was right. Best lip balm I've ever used, so I'll be using the rest of the containers I bought for major lip balm stockage! This being my first round, the regular sized lip balm twist containers were the choice because I wasn't sure how it would work out. If it goes over well, you may just see larger Boho Willow Stress Balm sticks for sale somewhere!
I also created a label using my Silhouette and some Waterproof Vinyl Inkjet labels I purchased here. I love the way they turned out!
Do you make any skincare or aromatherapy items? Do you like to use them? One reader will win 3 tubes of this awesome small batch, hand poured balm by entering below (even if you're already following on Facebook, be sure to click to enter!) Contest starts when this post goes live and will end Friday, May 23, 2014. Good luck!!
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