Back in September Carlee got in touch with a request—”Mediterranean Olive Almond & Sage Wonderbalm“. I’d never heard of it before. Apparently Boots, the British chemist, makes it. Carlee described it as a deep treatment for dry lips, elbows, and hands, and wondered if I might be interested in devising a DIY Mediterranean Wonderbalm dupe. Definitely!
Carlee included the ingredients in her e-mail. They were pretty run of the mill, especially considering the $9/15mL (!?!?!?) price tag. Seriously? It was mostly mineral oil & petroleum wax, plus cocoa butter (USA / Canada), grapeseed oil, beeswax, sweet almond oil (USA / Canada), and olive oil (pomace) (USA / Canada). Carlee described the texture as something a bit softer than petroleum jelly that absorbs quickly, with a light, floral scent.
I started by kicking all the petroleum products, preservatives, and fragrances to the curb. Yuck. That left me with a nice variety of nice, nourishing oils. The original balm used mostly grapeseed oil (after the petroleum oils), which explains why the balm absorbs quickly. Beeswax and cocoa butter (USA / Canada) thicken the mixture, and sweet almond and olive oil (pomace) (USA / Canada)s round it out. I thought I’d give the balm’s healing powers a boost by using some arnica infused olive oil (pomace) (USA / Canada) instead of the plain stuff.
The original contains a bit of sage essential oil, along with some more floral artificial fragrances—probably to keep the balm from smelling like a turkey dinner, haha. I paired the sage with a bit of geranium, rose geranium, and lavender to brighten it up.
The resulting balm is nice, and rings in at a whopping $0.35/15mL. That’s 4% the cost of the store bought version, plus mine doesn’t have any petroleum byproducts or artificial fragrances in it. Awesome.
DIY Mediterranean Wonderbalm
10g | 0.35oz cocoa butter (USA / Canada)
5g | 0.17oz beeswax (USA / Canada)
5g | 0.17oz grapeseed oil
5g | 0.17oz sweet almond oil (USA / Canada)
5g | 0.17oz arnica infused olive oil (pomace) (USA / Canada) (or plain olive oil (pomace) (USA / Canada)) (Don’t use arnica infused oil if you want to use it on broken skin or on the lips)
1g | 0.03oz Vitamin E MT-50 (USA / Canada)
4 drops sage essential oil
3 drops rose geranium essential oil
4 drops bergapatene-free bergamot essential oil
6 drops lavender essential oil
Weight the cocoa butter (USA / Canada), beeswax, grapeseed oil, sweet almond oil (USA / Canada), olive oil (pomace) (USA / Canada), and Vitamin E MT-50 (USA / Canada) into a heat resistant glass measuring cup. Place that measuring cup into a small saucepan with about 3cm/1″ of barely simmering water in it and melt everything together in that double boiler.
Once melted, remove from the heat. Stir in the essential oils with a flexible silicone spatula. Decant into little tins, let cool, and enjoy!