Saturday, February 21, 2015

DIY All-Natural Solid Perfume Sticks

To me, Saturdays are my primo, prime time, lazy days. A lot of people have gotten it wrong in thinking that Sundays deserve an award, but Saturdays are the only day I can fully unwind without needing to think of what I have to do at work the next day, meal plans for the week, and best of all I can clean like a mad woman with no inhibitions to speak of (You don't have to tell me I'm weird- I'm fully aware that it is an anomaly to think cleaning is fun, but we won't touch on that in this post).

I'll go to extreme lengths to be able to  bask in all of Saturday's glory, including refusing to undergo huge, messy, projects unless I have my fiancĂ© on lock down with clean up duties. That being said, this is the easiest, quickest, weekend project I've done and, best yet, it's cheap.

Let's get down to business.

Keep in mind you can do these a million ways from Sunday. Err... Saturday (Does anyone even use that saying anymore?). Here's what you'll need to start with:

  • Beeswax - I had a 1 oz bar and used a grater to get the amount I needed, but you could easily use pastilles to minimize clean up and work on your end even more. Embrace your inner sweat-pants wearing domestic goddess here.
  • Coconut Oil -Since this was an experiment I just used a regular generic brand from my local grocery store's health market. I'm confident that a higher quality coconut oil would yield better results. I've seen quite a few recipes that use jojoba oil, which is cool if you want to try that route, but coconut oil seems to harden a little bit more easily, giving a more solid end-product.
  • A metal latte pitcher- I just had one laying around but use what you want such as a double boiler or measuring cup or say screw everything and use a coffee mug.
  • Heat source- I didn't own a microwave when I set out on this venture. I can feel your audible gasps here, but I just didn't need one at the time. I used the ultimate lazy-hack and just turned on my empty coffee maker (no water, no coffee, I just wanted to use the pot warmer on it) and it worked like a freakin' charm. You'd think I was Hermione or something. It melted my wax and oil slowly enough that it didn't burn and it bought me some time to get everything else ready. 
  • Essential Oils
  • Empty Chapstick Containers- I bought these off of Amazon at a whopping 15¢ each including shipping

 If you're trying to release some pent up anger over the work week, classes, kids, whatever, grate that sucker up. I used about 3 tablespoons. If you were much smarter than I in remaining a bit more peaceful about the whole ordeal just measure out 3 tablespoons beeswax pastilles.

Once you've got that bit complete, throw your beeswax into the vessel of your choice along with an equal amount of coconut oil and get ready to heat everything up. It's just about impossible to mess this up.

As you slowly melt everything, stir to ensure everything is mixed well and can heat evenly. If you're accomplishing this in the microwave, I would recommend heating at 10- 15 second intervals.  You don't want it to bubble, you don't want it to burn (Which is why the coffee pot warmer is perfect- it literally cannot get this too hot).

Once your beeswax and coconut oil have gotten mixed very well (no chunks, we aren't the Goonies), add your essential oils while everything is still warm and mix quickly. I used grapefruit and patchouli because I simply enjoy those smells together, but I also made another batch of lavender and peppermint since I get quite a lot of headaches. You could use lavender and vetiver if you want a perfume blend to promote sleep, a pre-mixed blend from Young Living Essential Oils or Do-Terra (disclaimer: I have never tried either, but both do have some wonderful sounding mixes for everything from keeping sickness at bay to pumping up your energy), or you could even load it up with tea tree and lavender and have a no-mess cut healing stick to replace that chemical filled Neosporin in your medicine cabinet. 

You do you, honeybun. Just keep in mind essential oil safety guidelines (lower dilutions for children and pregnant women for example). I used about 20 drops of lavender and 5-10 of peppermint in one batch and it seemed to do the trick.

Using a funnel (or the pour spout of your handy dandy latte pitcher!) fill your chapstick tubes and let them sit to harden for a good amount of time (at least 30 minutes). If you want to sell them, give them away as gifts, or just make them easy to identify Lia Griffith has a super cute printable on her website that you can customize, as well as a tutorial for lipbalm that you can try as well!

In retrospect, I would probably up the ratio of beeswax since these get rather soft rather quickly and while that's great for in home use I would prefer something a little firmer so that I can throw one into my purse before running around outside at, say, a festival so it can stand up to the wicked heat of the midwest.

If you have any recommendations of oil blends, please share in the comments!

Good luck, and may your mimosas be plentiful!