Thursday, June 25, 2009

The Trouble with Tubes

Okay, I have a recipe I like for lip balm tubes (as opposed to jars). It has to be a little more firm in order to work.

After some experimentation, here’s what I like:
½ teaspoon beeswax
½ teaspoon Petroleum Jelly
½ teaspoon lanolin
I melt everything in a double boiler and pout into a tube while the mixture is still hot. It makes just enough for one nifty little tube of balm, so be sure to multiply the amounts according to how many you’d like to make.

I don’t add any color, but you certainly could (my girls are asking for pink and red glosses). It comes out a very natural blonde color on its own.

Here’s the problem… When I pour it into the tubes it settles as it cools and it winds up with a hole in the top of the balm - not very professional looking. The balm feels great but it still doesn’t look as good as the stuff you can get at Wal-Mart or Target. I’m clearly still an amateur.

I’ve been scouring Yahoo and Google for tips on how to properly fill the tubes, so far without any luck. I’m not sure who else to ask - any suggestions?


madpiano said...

wait until the mixture is slightly thicker and then overfill slightly. It will set with a slight bump which you can either leave or cut-off to make a straight top.

AmyElyssa said...

I'm going to try that tonight - thanks!
-Amy Elyssa

Bethany said...

you can also take a heating gun and remelt the top to fill in the hole. that's what we do when candles crack when drying or if they have hole in them. you could actually take a match to it if you are quick :)

Caroline said...

If you let the mixture cool just a little before pouring into the tubes you should get a smooth top (no hole). You can also overfill just a little to form a "bump" on the surface - this won't interfere with the cap!

Heather said...

I read on another site that if you fill 3/4 of the tube or jar and let it cool then fill the rest of the way it corrects this problem. I tried it and I can't say if this worked because my mixture didn't turn out like I had planned. It was too mushy. :/

Anonymous said...

hey i love your lip balm containers where did you get them from i really lovem all

erin said...

I have always seen people take the little 'cone' dixie cups and cut the bottom and use it as a funnel to pour into the tubes. if after the balm settles and the top doesnt look as good as it could, whip out the trusty hair dryer and heat up the tops of the tubes making sure that tubes are held upright so they can dry perfectly flat. :)

Jaylyn Brannon, CNH LMT said...

I use a mold to pour mine into. They're really cheap ($15 for a mold and the tubes for one batch.) You can re-use the mold. If you fill all the tubes in, the mold allows for a little bit of over-fill. Once they're all hardened, you use a flat scraper to scrape the tops of all your tubes. Once they're pulled out, they are slightly taller than the tube, and perfectly flat across the top. Anything you scraped off can be re-melted and poured into one you're keeping for yourself.