Montage of raw ingredients (c) Rianne Mason

Orange and rosemary ultimate balm

This is an aromatic all-in-one balm that smells like a Mediterranean garden. It’s great in small tins to pop in your bag for emergencies. Use it for lips, elbows, chapped skin, scrapes, cuticles and frizz.

Ingredients (makes 4 x 30ml tins)

  • Ensure all ingredients are cosmetic grade, preferably organic.
  • 40 ml olive oil
  • 40 ml/g shea butter
  • 40 ml/g beeswax
  • 15 drops of essential orange oil (to your preference)
  • 15 drops of essential rosemary oil (to your preference)


  1. Melt the olive oil, shea butter and beeswax in a heatproof jug over gently boiling water (double boiler). Choose a jug you can easily pour out of into small tins.
  2. When everything is melted together, add the essential oils.
  3. As soon as the essential oils are stirred through, quickly but carefully pour the mixture into the tins. It will start to set immediately.
  4. DON’T be tempted to touch, move or jiggle the tins! Every tiny movement will set, so to ensure a nice smooth surface just be patient 🙂
  5. Make a note of the date you made them, they last 6 – 12 months depending on the shelf life of your ingredients. The high amount of beeswax gives this a high melting point, so no need to store in the fridge.

Top tips from when I made it

  • Ensure your workspace and equipment are spotlessly clean.
  • Add a little less beeswax and more shea for a slightly softer balm. This recipe sets really solid which is useful for travel to a warmer climate but might be too much hard work in a British winter!
  • DON’T be tempted to do anything with the tins of balm once they’re poured. I didn’t think they smelt strong so I added another drop of essential oil per tin and it just sat on top of the balm because it had already started to set.
  • Experiment with different flavours and have fun! I like citrus notes in a balm and the small amount of rosemary here balances out the sweetness of the orange.

Enjoy the magic of nature…


Beeswax is a natural wax produced by honeybees. It’s what the bees use to form cells for honey storage and larval protection.

It carries antiviral, anti-inflammatory, and antibacterial properties that are essential in fighting chapped skin and bacterial infections. It creates a barrier for your skin without clogging it.


Olives are the fruit of the plant Olea europaea, known as the olive tree. Over thousands of years the tree has adapted to cope with extreme conditions such as drought, fire and poor soils. This could be what gives it its other name ‘tree of eternity’.

Its many uses contributed to the rise of the Greek and Roman empires. The trees are grown in many parts of the world but they flourish in the Mediterranean where they’re wind pollinated.


Shea butter is taken from the nuts of the plant Vitellaria paradoxa, also called the shea tree. It’s a deciduous tree indigenous to Africa. Once the creamy white flower is pollinated, largely by honey bees, an oil-rich seed is formed.

The shea is an important tree in sub-Saharan Africa. Its butter is nutritious and a vital ingredient for confectionary, cosmetics and pharmaceuticals across the world.


The orange is the fruit of the plant Citrus x sinensis, or orange tree. They originated in ancient China and are now widely grown in tropical and sub tropical climates where they’re pollinated mainly by bees.

In Eastern history orange trees symbolise prosperity and happiness. The Chinese word for tangerine stems from the word ‘luck’. The scent of the orange is fresh and uplifting, balancing body and mind.


Rosemary has the botanical name of Salvia rosmarinus. It’s an evergreen herb native to the Mediterranean and a member of the mint family. Bees and butterflies are the main pollinators.

Rosemary was used as a culinary and medicinal herb by the ancient Greeks and Romans. Today it’s still used in aromatherapy to reduce stress and encourage clarity.