Beetroot lip stain seemed like a really great idea. Foolproof, even. I mean, if it can make your poo red long after it’s been digested, surely it can perform the simple trick of reddening your lips, right? Wrong. It had absolutely no interest in reddening anything as part of a mostly water solution, though it did turn into a wee bit of rather ghetto moonshine after a few weeks. Hrmph. How inconsiderate.
Anyhow, I eventually figured I could find another use for my bag of powdered beetroot. Since soap colouring was out of the question thanks to numerous testimonials from readers (apparently it turns brown during saponification, and I am not short of things to turn soap brown), I turned back to cosmetics. Beetroot lip gloss seemed a good place to start, since it wasn’t too far from my original use.
Since beetroot is water soluble, lip gloss makes the perfect canvas for it. If you try to stir a bit of beetroot extract into some lip balm (which is totally oil based), you will just end up with a horrifically gritty, awful tube of lip balm. Yuck (I’ve tried it).
So, you need something water based to dissolve the extract into. That’s how the lip stain started, and while the beetroot extract dissolved beautifully, it lacked the viscosity to do much of anything on the skin. That’s where the water/oil emulsion of lip gloss comes in. We’ll dissolve the beetroot extract in vegetable glycerine, and then whisk it together with some melted oils and wax to get a beautiful, naturally coloured beetroot lip gloss.
Beetroot Lip Gloss
Melt the oils together in a saucepan over low heat. Remove from heat and let cool, stirring occasionally.
While they melt, combine the vegetable glycerine and beetroot extract, stirring to combine. You should end up with a fairly viscous, dark red mixture.
Once the oils have cooled to a creamy, thick mixture, whisk the two parts together. You’ll have a thick, maroon mixture. Decant into squeezy tubes or hard tubes with a wand lid (a syringe or funnel helps greatly here).
This recipe will fill four 10mL/0.33fl oz tubes or jars.