home­grown

Beeswax is an ex­cel­lent in­gre­di­ent to have on hand for mak­ing nat­u­ral lo­tions, po­tions, lip balms and salves.

NZ Lifestyle Block - - Contents - Words Jane Wrig­glesworth

10 uses for home­grown beeswax

If you are lucky enough to have ac­cess to it, or have a good stock from your own bee­hives, then you can use beeswax to make use­ful prod­ucts you can use around the house.

As an in­gre­di­ent in cos­met­ics it acts as both an emol­lient, sooth­ing and soft­en­ing skin, and a humectant, at­tract­ing wa­ter and help­ing to ab­sorb it in the skin. It has mild an­tibac­te­rial and an­timi­cro­bial ac­tions, and it’s also thought to be ef­fec­tive in heal­ing bruises, in­flam­ma­tion and burns, which make it an ex­cel­lent in­gre­di­ent in home­made salves. It also gives a soft, satiny sheen to wooden fur­ni­ture and other ob­jects.

1 Lip balm

If you suf­fer from dry or cracked lips, you can eas­ily make your own lip balm with a few sooth­ing in­gre­di­ents. Donna Lee, from Cot­tage Hill Herbs (www. cot­tage­hill­herbs.co.nz) de­vised this lip balm, which is very heal­ing and sooth­ing to chapped lips. Melissa (or lemon balm) es­sen­tial oil is anti-in­flam­ma­tory and has strong an­tivi­ral prop­er­ties, so it dou­bles as pro­tec­tion from cold sores.

In­gre­di­ents

30g beeswax 50g co­coa but­ter 35ml cal­en­dula oil 35ml al­mond oil 20ml aloe vera liq­uid 50ml cas­tor oil 3 drops pure es­sen­tial oil

of melissa per 15g pot

How to make

Gen­tly melt all of the above in­gre­di­ents, ex­cept the melissa oil, in a dou­ble boiler un­til all com­bined. Pour this mix­ture into a heated, heat­proof glass jug and keep warm. Pre­pare 15g pots (these in­gre­di­ents will make 10 pots) by plac­ing 3 drops of melissa a es­sen­tial oil into the bot­tom of each one, then pour the liq­uid care­fully into each. Al­low to set be­fore plac­ing lids on pots.

2 Fur­ni­ture pol­ish

Make a sim­ple wood pol­ish with just two in­gre­di­ents.

In­gre­di­ents

1 tbsp beeswax, grated 3 tbsp co­conut oil

How to make

Melt the beeswax in a dou­ble boiler, or a heat­proof bowl over sim­mer­ing wa­ter. When melted add the co­conut oil and stir un­til melted. Re­move from heat and pour into a shal­low, wide­mouthed glass jar with a lid. Ap­ply to wood with a soft cloth, then buff with another soft cloth. Dou­ble, triple or quadru­ple the recipe to give as gifts.

3 Face soft­en­ing con­di­tioner

In a dou­ble boiler, melt one part beeswax, one part honey and one part al­mond oil. Use this as a deep con­di­tion­ing treat­ment. Ap­ply to face and neck and leave for 15-20 min­utes be­fore rins­ing off with warm wa­ter.

4 Beeswax seal

Make your let­ters stand out with a beeswax seal. All you need is a wax seal stamp and beeswax. Melt some beeswax in a dou­ble boiler, then drip it onto the back of a sealed en­ve­lope. Use the stamp to leave your im­pres­sion.

5 Sim­ple lo­tion

You can choose your favourite es­sen­tial oil or oils to im­part a pre­ferred fra­grance. Laven­der and rose gera­nium oils are both ex­cel­lent for treat­ing acne, rashes, fun­gal in­fec­tions and other skin dis­or­ders. If you use fra­grance oils in­stead of pure es­sen­tial oils, bear in mind that these oils are syn­thetic and have no ther­a­peu­tic value. The vi­ta­min E oil is op­tional, but as an an­tiox­i­dant it acts as a preser­va­tive, re­duc­ing the rate of ox­i­di­s­a­tion and pro­vid­ing a longer shelf life. If your skin is prone to acne, use jo­joba or sun­flower oil in place of sweet al­mond oil.

In­gre­di­ents

1 cup sweet al­mond oil (or olive oil) ½ cup co­conut oil 60g beeswax 10 drops laven­der es­sen­tial oil 10 drops rose gera­nium es­sen­tial oil ½ tsp vi­ta­min E oil (op­tional)

How to make

Place the sweet al­mond oil, co­conut oil and beeswax in a dou­ble boiler, or a heat­proof bowl over sim­mer­ing wa­ter, and heat gen­tly un­til melted. Re­move from the heat and stir in the es­sen­tial oils and vi­ta­min E oil. Pour into a clean jar.

6 Lo­tion bar

This is not soap but a solid mois­tur­is­ing lo­tion bar. Co­coa but­ter is rich in vi­ta­min E and fatty acids and can help soothe dry skin and rashes, while beeswax adds a pro­tec­tive bar­rier to the skin to help lock in mois­turiser.

In­gre­di­ents

90g beeswax 90g sweet al­mond oil 60g co­coa but­ter

How to make

Gen­tly heat in­gre­di­ents in a dou­ble boiler, or a heat­proof bowl over sim­mer­ing wa­ter, un­til melted. Mix well, then pour into soap moulds and al­low to set. To use, rub be­tween your hands then rub onto your skin, or rub the bar di­rectly onto dry ar­eas, such as el­bows, heels, knees, etc.

Vi­ta­min E oil is an an­tiox­i­dent, act­ing as a preser­va­tive and giv­ing a longer shelf life

7 Skin-sooth­ing balm

Donna Lee from Cot­tage Hill Herbs says this recipe is a heal­ing, sooth­ing balm that is great for rough spots any­where on the body like el­bows, heels, feet and hands. It is also won­der­ful for ba­bies’ bot­toms and mums’ tum­mies.

In­gre­di­ents

2 tsp beeswax 1 tsp co­coa but­ter 1 tsp shea nut but­ter 3 tbsp cas­tor oil 1 tsp wheat­germ oil Turmeric es­sen­tial oil

How to make

Melt all in­gre­di­ents in a dou­ble boiler and heat un­til well com­bined. Re­move from the heat and al­low to cool slightly. Add 15 drops of turmeric es­sen­tial oil and pour into a pot or pots. Al­low to cool and set be­fore putting the lid/s on. This balm is rich and sooth­ing, very safe, and gen­tle with a re­ju­ve­nat­ing ef­fect on skin. The turmeric es­sen­tial oil is anti-in­flam­ma­tory.

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