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Gettin' Crafty: preventing chapped lips with homemade lip balm

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​ ​For all those who give pom-pom critters for birthdays, feel an urge to stick googly eyes on everything or just occasionally get a twitch to fold some origami, we bring you "Gettin' Crafty" where we feature a craft you can easily make with minimal supplies and limited finances. To ensure that you are prepared for any mistletoe action, take action now and make your own lip balm. Whoever you may be kissing this season will be oh-so-glad you did.

Supplies 2 tablespoons grated beeswax * 3 tablespoons almond oil (you can use olive or coconut oil, too) 5 drops essential oil for scent and flavoring (available at health food stores) 1 drop of honey containers

*You can use regular ole' beeswax here, but I found it difficult to find a reasonable-sized block of beeswax. Or beeswax at all, for that matter. If you don't plan on using a lot of it, I recommend buying a 100% beeswax candle. It is a lot more cost effective than the giant blocks of wax at craft supply stores.

Instructions 1. Wash and dry the containers you are planning to put the lip balm in. I used those little one-ounce jelly jars that they give you at brunch places sometimes, but any little canister or old lip-balm container will do.

2. Grate the candle using a cheese grater that you don't really care about. It will be hard to get the grater totally clean after you grate the wax on it. Don't say I didn't warn you. Put the gratings into a microwave-safe bowl.

3. Add the oil to the grated wax.

4. Put it in the microwave. Be sure not to let the mixture get too hot and start to boil. You don't want that. You want a clear, uniform liquid that will be slightly thicker than water. Depending on microwaves, expect anywhere from 45 seconds to a little over a minute. Mine took a minute and a half.

5. Take the bowl out of the microwave. USE HOT PADS. The bowl will be hot, I can guarantee it.

6. Add in the essential oil and honey. If you would like to add any coloring, now is the time to do it. If you want to do it au natural, you could use spices like turmeric for a yellow color, henna powder for a red, beet juice for a darker red. I think you get the drift. This is also the time if you wanted to add any cocoa powder, crushed up mint, lavender, etc. I kept mine simple with just lemon essential oil. But feel free to show me up.

7. Pour -- very very carefully -- into the canisters. Otherwise you will make a giant mess and end up wasting half the batch of lip balm and it will all end up on the kitchen counter instead of the little containers. Not that I would know.

8. This recipe makes enough to fill three one-ounce jars, granted you don't make a mess. The lip balm is ready to use as soon as it cools down and solidifies a bit, which is about 10 minutes.

Since I plan on giving mine as gifts, I decorated the tops. But that is not necessary, merely suggested.

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