Are you a lip balm lover? Yes? Me too! Over the course of my life, I have used a LOT of lip balms. Some of them have been okay, some of them awful, and some fabulous! In recent years, I’ve become a lot pickier about what I use. As a flautist, many of the lip balms I’ve used leave residue on my instrument, which does not make me happy. It’s not *hard* to clean it off necessarily – it just plain irritates me. As I play more and more during our dry winters in Calgary, I wondered more often why I was sacrificing hydrated lips to keep my lip plate residue-free.
I’m a pretty crafty person and I like to try new things, especially when I can make improvements on the original design! This is why I made my own duvet cover with matching pillow cases (I just *knew* I could improve the design of my last duvet cover), reusable tea bags (no more clanking metal infusers!), and outdoor music stand cover (clothespins are a pain) among other things. Lip balm was no different.
After a series of concerts during the holiday season, I was tired of constantly cleaning off my lip plate, so I decided to make my own lip balm. (I’m also an avid Pinterest user and lip balm had been coming up in my feed quite often, so the seed had been planted already!) My first lip balm was Winter Rose. The container was pretty horrible, but I loved the resulting flavour and texture! Testing it out with my flute, I had no more nasty residues. There was a bit of oil left, but it was super easy to clean off and wasn’t sticky. Even better! That was pretty much all for awhile. I had a lot of lip balm and could only give away so many to family and friends.
Lip Balm Mania
Fast forward to starting YYC Beeswax. Initially, I was just going to do candles, but I really enjoyed making lip balm and had a TON of ideas for flavours.
I started out with Winter’s Kiss, which was loosely based off of Winter Rose. Family and friends tried them out with more positive results. I found out one person was using it successfully on the skin around their eyes, so I thought making a more neutral product might be of interest too! Thus, Au Naturel was born. Although it isn’t glamorous, it does its job spectacularly.
I’m also a HUGE fan of Christmas and love mint, so Candy Cane was a no-brainer. The full size ones are even striped!
With the next flavour I made, I wanted to get the community involved in the lip balm mania, so I ran a contest to name the new flavour. FOUR people suggested the winning name – Cardanilla. It was so exciting to send them the newly labelled lip balm with their suggested name on the tube!
More recently, Canadian Maple and Lavender Mint were added to the lip balm family. I went through a maple phase and it took a few tries to perfect, but I’m really happy with how the Canadian Maple balm turned out, and it looks like the masses love it too! Lavender Mint has been percolating in my brain for awhile, and I finally had a chance to make a batch. I think it’s a winner!
After my first experience of horrible tubes (the lids did not fit properly and were constantly opening in my pocket. What a mess!), I put an order in for tubes from a different supplier. Despite that order, I still wasn’t 100% happy and wanted to pay closer attention to the packaging.
One design feature I was not a fan of was the turning mechanism at the bottom of the tube. I keep lip balms in my pockets and find they tend to move while in a pocket, which pushes the lip balm into the lid. Not fun! As I was exploring alternative packaging, I recalled using a lip balm with the turning mechanism at the top of the tube. With that lip balm, I never had the issue of the lip balm ending up in the lid. I knew what I wanted. It was just a matter of hunting them down.
As I hunted for new lip balm tubes, I stumbled across the type of tube I was searching for in mini form. Although I love full size lip balms, I remember the first time I saw the Lip Rageous mini lip balms. They were so cute! They fit incredibly well in my tiny pocketed jeans (I hated and still hate carrying around a purse) and how unobtrusive they were to pull out and use at any time. Finding a similar idea online turned the light bulb on. I wanted to put MY lip balms in one of these too!
It took a bit of time, but I finally found the tubes I wanted in the sizes I was looking for. I have to say I’m quite pleased with the end result.
Something I wanted to do when I started YYC Beeswax was to give back to the community. It feels great to give back, and I wanted to share the feeling! With each lip balm sold, $0.25 is donated to Apiaries and Bees for Communities in support of their educational programming. Not only do I get excited about giving back with each lip balm sale, customers can get excited every time they buy one too! Every year, the goal is to beat the donation from the previous year, and we enjoy tracking it monthly to see our progress. Check out the progress for the current year on this page.
Fast forward to today, and I am so pleased with the evolution of the lip balm family. The existing flavours are great. The packaging works with my lifestyle. My flute no longer has residue. How can it get better? Well, I do have some more flavour ideas to try…