Balm according to James Green who wrote The Herbal Medicine Makers Handbook, “A balm is simply a salve that contains a relatively high amount of volatile oils. Upon application is delivers a notably intense cloud of aromatic vapours.”  Therefore a balm is a salve that also contains butters such as cacao or Shea Butter making for a creamier end product.

Cacao is fairly hard at room temperature so makes for a slightly firmer end product whereas Shea is very creamy and therefore a lovely addition to lip balms or body butters. Mango butter is also delicious and has a lower melt point and a more slippery consistency.


Basic Balm Recipe:

67 ml infused oil
25 g cacao butter
5 g beeswax
2 ml vitamin E
1 ml essential oils of choice


Basic Body Butter Recipe:

57 ml infused oil
20 g shea butter
20 g cacao butter
2 ml vitamin E
1 ml essential oils

These balms can be made as above by melting the oils, butters and wax in a Bain Marie then adding the essential oils and vitamin E at the last moment so they will not be affected by the heat.





  1. Petroleum gel


  1. Paraffin oil


  1. Bees wax


  1. Industrial camphor


  1. Menthol


  1. Peppermint


  1. Eucalyptus salt


  1. Colour (optional)




  1. Petroleum gel………1/4 kg


  1. Paraffin oil……………..1/2 litre


  1. Bees wax……………….just the size of your thumb


  1. Industrial camphor……if crushed to powder use 1/2 spoon, if in balls, use 1/2 a ball.


  1. Pepper mint……………2 spoons


  1. Eucalyptus……………… 2-3 spoons


  1. Menthol…………………4-6 spoons


  1. Colourant……………….as desired (optional)






Step 1_ put a dry metal pot on fire


Step 2_ turn the gel into the pot and allow to melt


Steps 3_ pour the paraffin oil and stir


Step4_ Add the bees wax and allow melting


Step 5_ Add the eucalyptus salt and stir


Step 6_ turn down the heat, then add the menthol and stir


Step 7_ add the pepper mint and stir properly together.


Step 8_ add the camphor and stir also.


Step 9_ add colourant (if any) and stir properly together


Finally, package your balm for use.


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