Super Healing Cold Sore Lip Balm

lip balm recipe for cold sores

If you’ve followed my blog for a while, you’ll know that a lot of my inspiration for learning to use herbs came from the health issues my son had when he was small.

In the middle of his healing journey, he suddenly developed the problem of breaking out in frequent cold sores, triggered by sunshine. This caused quite the dilemma since he also had low vitamin D levels and was supposed to be getting direct, midday exposure to the sun each day to help.

After a lot of searching and testing, we found a fantastic liquid cold sore product at the health store that sped up the healing and helped ease the pain. It’s been so long, that I can’t even remember the name to link to it – but I do remember reading the label and thinking: Hey, I bet I can make something like this!

So, I did.

It worked so great that I passed samples around to family members who also loved it. (It’s excellent for treating plain old chapped lips as well.) His cold sores cleared up after a few months and I never needed to make it again. Recently though, several people have asked me for ideas on how they can use up the lemon balm taking over their gardens, so I dug the recipe back out.

 

lemon balm

A few notes, before we start:

Cold sores are caused by a virus (Herpes Simplex Type I.)

Once you’ve been exposed to it (and estimates say that 60 to 85% of the population has been), you will never eliminate the virus or completely kill it off. You can however, improve your overall health so that your body is able to keep the virus in check. Taking anti-viral herbs such as olive leaf, elderberry, lemon balm, oregano, forsythia & honeysuckle as teas or tinctures may help quite a bit as well.

Lemon balm (also called melissa) is a potent anti-viral.

Several studies have been carried out demonstrating that lemon balm can improve cold sore symptoms and shorten the duration of healing time. (My fellow science nerds can click HERE to browse through some of those on PubMed.)

If you don’t have the resources or time to make your own lemon balm lip balm, try running a search on Etsy or Poppyswap to find handcrafters who offer a similar product.

This article may contain affiliate links to Mountain Rose HerbsBramble Berry and Amazon. If you click on one and make a purchase, I earn a small commission for sending a customer their way. This costs you nothing extra, but helps support this website and lets me keep doing what I do. Thank you! :)

 

lemon balm infused oil

Step 1 – Make an Infused Oil

First, we’re going to need to gather some lemon balm and make an infused oil from it. If you’ve ever planted lemon balm, you probably have way more than you’ll ever need. (It spreads like crazy!) If you don’t have any in your garden, you can buy dried lemon balm from Mountain Rose Herbs.

I always wilt fresh herbs (and flowers) by letting them air dry in a single layer on a paper towel for at least 12 to 24 hours before infusing them in oil. Otherwise, the water content from the plant can make your oil mold or spoil faster. I play it safe and use completely dry lemon balm in this recipe.

To infuse your oil: Fill a heat proof jar about 1/4 of the way full with dried lemon balm leaves. Crumble them up a little, as you add them in. Slowly pour a light oil (olive or sunflower oil both work well) over the dried herb until the jar is pretty full. Stir well and then cap and let sit in a dark place for around 4 to 6 weeks.

If you’re in a hurry, you can infuse the oil more quickly using the heat method: Set your jar of oil/herb down into a saucepan filled with a few inches of water, creating a makeshift double boiler. Heat over a burner turned to low or medium-low for a few hours. Be sure to watch it carefully so you don’t overheat or scorch your herbs.

If you’d like, you can make a compound oil and add calendula flowers and/or plantain leaves to infuse along with the lemon balm. Both of these herbs are excellent at smoothing skin irritations and make nice additions to the formula.

Once your oil has infused, strain it and store in a labeled glass jar, preferably in a cool, dark place for around a year. (For longest storage, some keep their infused oils in the refrigerator. That is perfectly fine to do, just let them warm up to room temperature before using in a recipe.)

 

cold sore lip balm made with lemon balm melissa

Step 2 – Make the Lip Balm

I use a general lip balm recipe of: 3 parts oil, 1 part beeswax, 1/2 to 1 part solid butter and roughly 1 to 2 drops of each essential oil per tablespoon of ingredients (See my post on “How to Create Custom Homemade Lip Balms”)

If you’d like a softer lip balm, use less beeswax. Conversely, if you’d like a firmer lip balm, use more beeswax. Keep in mind that we want our balm soft enough to apply with a clean finger or cotton swab, so we avoid contaminating our product.

 

Try this effective DIY lip balm recipe next time a cold sore comes around! It features lemon balm - a potent antiviral that's been shown in studies to improve cold sore symptoms & shorten the duration of time to heal.

Super Healing Cold Sore Lip Balm Recipe

  • 4 tablespoons lemon balm infused oil
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon of coconut oil (if allergic, just substitute more lemon balm oil)
  • 1/2 tablespoon tamanu oil (an amazing oil that heals a multitude of skin conditions)
  • 1/2 tablespoon castor oil (helps the lip balm go on smoothly, adds a bit of gloss)
  • 2 scant tablespoons beeswax (or half as much candelilla wax for vegans)
  • 1 tablespoon shea butter (or mango butter)
  • 15 drops tea tree oil (also effective against herpes simplex, see this study)
  • 25 drops of peppermint essential oil (cooling, analgesic, I put extra so the lip balm can smell great!)
  • 2 drops of clove bud oil (optional, for pain relief)

If there’s a vitamin E that you can tolerate, the liquid contents of a capsule or two added to the melted oils makes a wonderful addition. My original recipe also included a few drops of camphor essential oil, but because it has the potential to be toxic if ingested, I now recommend leaving it out in case younger children or chronic lip-lickers use the product.

Combine all of your oils, shea butter and beeswax in a heat proof container. Set it down into a saucepan containing a few inches of water. Watch carefully and heat over medium-low heat until everything is melted.

Remove from heat and stir in the essential oils and vitamin E, if using.

Pour into tiny tins, if you have them, or you can recycle glass jelly or mason jars. Once your lip balms have set up, cap and store away from direct heat or sunlight.

This sized batch will fill about 7 little half-ounce tins.

 

Be sure to apply with clean fingers or cotton swabs, avoiding ‘double dipping’ so you won’t contaminate your lip balm. You can also use this balm as healing salve, suitable for minor scrapes and patches of dry skin.

I hope this recipe will help some cold sore sufferers out there, as much as it helped my son. Don’t forget that external treatments will only alleviate the symptoms; to decrease or prevent flare-ups: eat right, try to get more rest, and reduce overall stress (easier said, than done – I know!)

The information provided on this site is not regulated by the FDA and is not intended to replace qualified medical care. If you have any questions or concerns, please do further research & consult your doctor before using home remedies.

You may also enjoy:

12 Uses for Lemon Balm | Dandelion Lotion Bars | Drawing Salve

12 Things To Do With Lemon Balm  Dandelion Lotion Bars  Drawing Salve 250 x 250

If you like the projects on my site, you’ll love my new book – 101 Easy Homemade Products for Your Skin, Health & Home!

101 Easy Homemade Products By The Nerdy Farm Wife

You can buy it today at the following places!

Bramble Berry

Barnes & Noble

Books-A-Million

Indie Bound

Amazon.com

and wherever books are sold!

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114 Responses to Super Healing Cold Sore Lip Balm

  1. Can’t wait to try this lip balm. I have always been prone to out breaks of cold sores. The sun is also a big stimulant for an outbreak for me. Never knew lemon balm had anti viral properties. Thanks!

  2. jen says:

    what can you use in replace of Tamanu oil? Great recipe thanks!

  3. Patti says:

    My garden is almost where I want it, just in time to be moving in 2 weeks for the 7th time, .I am frantically trying to pot, root, dry, infuse, etc. whatever I can. Yesterday, it was parsley, sage, hyssop, meadowsweet and horseradish. Lemon balm was bookmarked, so your post could not have come at a better time. The boys in my family also suffer from cold sores, both external and internal. It’s awful, my son who is now 20, has gotten them since he was a little guy. His lips actually swell. Both our dentist and pediatrician have wanted to treat him with antiviral drugs, which we have not used. I will be outside tomorrow morning collecting my abundance of lemon balm to try your recipe. Thank you.

    • Jan says:

      Oh wow, that’s a shame to have to leave your garden – I’m glad you get to take a part of it with you though. I hope the lip balm helps with the sores – drinking a tea of the leaves (or making a tincture with vegetable glycerine or vodka) might also help. I put my son on a rotation of anti-viral herbs at the time and found that olive leaf seemed to have a huge impact as well. (He took capsules of it in order to get a good quantity in.) Good luck & safe travels with your move! :)

    • jan says:

      I take L Lysine 500mg (essential amino acid) daily and increase to twice a day if I get stressed or run down. I haven’t had a major break out for years. hope this helps

      • Jan says:

        That’s a great tip! Thanks for sharing! :)

      • Cindy says:

        I agree 100%!!! My son started having outbreaks when he was 6 yrs old and they progressively got worse as he got older. By the time he reached his teens, the outbreaks were occurring more frequently, covered almost half of his lower lip, were unsightly and left a dark blemish afterwards. At thirteen, I was reluctant to put him on medication with damaging side affects. I give him 3 capsules daily while he was experiencing an outbreak or feel one coming on, otherwise one tablet daily, everyday 365 days a year. At the beginning, the outbreaks were shorter in duration and occurred less frequently as time when on. My son is 14 now, the blemish has faded and he hasn’t had an outbreak in over a year. L-lysine is inexpensive and easy to take with no side affects.

      • liz says:

        It is important to balance lysine/Argentine in the diet. Self magazines Nutrition Data has content lists of most foods. Nuts, peanuts, and citrus contain high ants of lysine so be sure to include apples or dairy foods to balance meals. Lysine tablets can be powdered and applied directly to the lips mixed with the balm. If you feel that tingle you can head off the sore by just dipping your lip in a bit of milk or cream throughout the day.

  4. Kristy says:

    Can you infuse the oil with fresh Lemon Balm leaves?

    • Jan says:

      Hi Kristy, you can – and some people do – however, there will be water in the fresh leaves so you have to keep a close eye on it for spoilage. When it’s done infusing, you carefully decant most of it to a clean container and let the sludge on the bottom stay in the original jar. Then let that settle a few days and decant again. However, I’ve found that using completely fresh plants leads to a shorter shelf life for my oil, (and have heard many stories of them molding), so at least let them wilt overnight to let some of the water evaporate out. And one more thing – if you use fresh or barely dried leaves, it’s also helpful to cap with a few layers of cheesecloth fastened on top with a rubber band, instead of a regular tight fitting jar top. This will let the oil breathe and help water evaporate out without forming condensation under the lid (which will also lead to mold.) I hope that helped! :)

      • Kristy says:

        Hi Jan,

        Your information was amazing! Thank you. I think to be safe I will pick the leaves and dry them first!

  5. Great idea! This is a wonderfully thorough tutorial =)

  6. Lisa says:

    I love this. I have a ton of lemon balm and am headed out to pick some now to get it drying.

  7. Michelle says:

    Hi Jan,
    Thank you, your website is an endless source of information and clever ideas. I have spent a number of hours covering many of your pages and intend to spend many more. I live in Australia and am studying Naturopathy and Herbal Botany and I could be lost in your website for days and enjoy every moment. Congratulations on all your hard work, keep up the great work.
    With thanks
    Michelle

  8. Irina says:

    Can I buy this already made somewhere ?

  9. Nancy says:

    Hi ! Love this recipe , thanks so much !! Wanted to know can you substitute cocoa butter instead of the shea butter? Thanks again ♥

  10. Carissa says:

    Can you send me a sample of your lip balm!?

    • Jan says:

      Hi Carissa, I don’t currently have any of this lip balm made up. I’d like to get some in the shop eventually, but I have a lot of projects in the works and just haven’t gotten to it yet. You may be able to go to poppyswap.com or etsy.com and search “melissa” or “lemon balm” and find something similar!

  11. Betsy says:

    Are you saying I have to store my infused oil for a year before I can use it in this recipe? Thanks!

    • Jan says:

      Hi Betsy, No, the infused oil should stay fresh for up to a year. Try to use it up before then. If you use the slow method, it will be ready in 4 to 6 weeks and the quick method, in a matter of hours:

      Slow Method: “To infuse your oil: Fill a heat proof jar about 1/4 of the way full with dried lemon balm leaves. Crumble them up a little, as you add them in. Slowly pour a light oil (olive or sunflower oil both work well) over the dried herb until the jar is pretty full. Stir well and then cap and let sit in a dark place for around 4 to 6 weeks.” (Strain after the 4 to 6 weeks & then you can use.)

      Quick Method: “If you’re in a hurry, you can infuse the oil more quickly using the heat method: Set your jar of oil/herb down into a saucepan filled with a few inches of water, creating a makeshift double boiler. Heat over a burner turned to low or medium-low for a few hours. Be sure to watch it carefully so you don’t overheat or scorch your herbs.” (Strain after a few hours & then you can use.)

  12. angel says:

    Can you seal it in the can to increase shelf life?

    • angel says:

      Sorry I should have been more specific. Can you seal the infused oil in a jar like can it basically and keep it put up to increase the shelf life?

      • Jan says:

        Hi Angel! I’ve not tried it myself, but I recently talked to a lady that cans herbal water infusions for use later. I think that’s definitely an option to explore further, I just don’t have any personal experience with doing so.

  13. Jennifer says:

    Can this be done with lemon balm extract? My mother bought the extract (she watches Dr. Oz) and I’d like to help make a balm, ointment, or salve.

    • Jan says:

      Hi Jennifer, My mother-in-law was just telling me the other day about Dr. Oz mentioning lemon balm! Is the extract a liquid? Alcohol/water based or oil based? (I’m not sure what kind he recommended.) For a balm, ointment or salve, you’d want an oil based additive or else it will separate out of your formula. Water/alcohol based can be used in lotions & creams though. If you link the brand/type you bought – I can answer better. :)

      • Jennifer says:

        Her extract is made with ionized water and vegetable glycerin. I’d like to make something she can put directly on her lips and carry in her purse. Thanks so much. I love your recipes!

        • Jan says:

          Hi Jennifer! Since it has water in it, you could try adding it to a cream recipe – those are made where the extract could emulsify with the other ingredients, instead of weeping out like it would in all oil based lip balm or salve. Though unless you add a chemical preservative, you should really keep creams refrigerated, so I’m not really sure that’s the best option. It might be easiest just to take the plain extract and dab it directly on the lips with a q-tip or cotton ball.

    • Amy says:

      Thanks for your recipe :) I’d love to make this salve for my family. Am I able to use a ready made lemon balm tincture? And if so how much? Hopefully not 4 tablespoons, as it’s quite expensive lol

      • Jan says:

        Hi Amy! If the ready made lemon balm tincture is oil based, then yes, you could blend some into this recipe with a plain oil like sunflower or olive. (I’m not sure exactly how much to use, but it shouldn’t take much at all.) If it’s water or alcohol based though, it will separate right out of this oil based recipe and make something of a mess. You could do a workaround and make a cream with it, but that would probably take a bit of tinkering and experimenting. (Adding that idea to my never ending want-to-try-to-make-soon list though!) You might have some success dabbing a bit of your lemon balm tincture directly on a cold sore, with a cotton swab several times a day. (Some internal use of the tincture might be helpful too!) :)

  14. Liz says:

    Researching cold sores, I found that L-lysine amino acid keeps the herpes virus from reproducing. I have tried rubbing it into cord sores when they first start to show up. This really helps stop its emergence. I found that it also helps the immune system keep the virus under control if taking this amino acid 3,000 – 9,000 a day during the herpes virus breakouts.

    I think this information should be helpful for all those who are looking for ways to keep the cold core virus under control. I have tried and found that L-lysine really helps me combat cold sores.

    Another thing to keep in mind is that it dissolves in water and not oil. So, when adding it to lib balms, it would be wise to dissolve it in water before adding it to the oils.

    • Jan says:

      Thanks for that great info Liz! That’s especially handy to know that it dissolves best in water. If you add water to this oil based lip balm it will just ooze out, but you could most likely use the L-lysine/water mixture to make a cream-like ointment for the lips! I appreciate your tips – I know that others will find them helpful too! :)

  15. Liz says:

    I should clarify that some recommend the 3,000-9,000 mg dosage per day during virus attacks while others do not recommend taking more than 3,000 mg. I have taken up to 4,000 mg internally with great results. Taking the supplement internally and applying it externally throughout the day dramatically decreases the life of the cold sore. I recommend everyone to try this amazing remedy.

  16. Ken says:

    I really like it when people come together and share opinions.
    Great website, keep it up!

  17. Bernice Vanover says:

    I get cold sores every once in a while. I have found out that if I take 100 mg. of Zinc and take 2-1000 mg. of L-Lysine at the start of a cold sore along then one tablet of zinc (50 mg.) daily and one tablet of L-Lysine three times a day the rest of time for about a week along with putting ABREVA on it I can have it gone in three days tops.

  18. Debbie says:

    What a GREAT post! I appreciate this and am going to have to tackle this for my daughter. She’s had chronic cold sores (and she picks them AND she doesn’t leave them alone). Really excited to find this!

    • Jan says:

      That’s great Debbie – I hope it helps! There were some good comments here too about success with l-lysine, you might want to check those out too.

  19. KATIE STRICKLAND says:

    HOW CAN WE PURCHASE YOUR COLD SORE TREATMENT? I HAVE LOOKED ON ETSY BUT I DO BELIEVE I AM MISSING IT! :) THANK YOU AND THANK GOODNESS I HAVE FOUND SUCH A WONDERFUL PRODUCT TO TRY ON MY 4 YEAR OLD BABY GIRL! BREAKS MY HEART….CANT WAIT TO TRY AND MAKE THIS AS WELL

  20. Heather says:

    Hi! I just found your site and I love all your great recipes and ideas. I have been a lifelong sufferer of cold sores and just recently discovered Resveratrol, it seems to really help me in the pill form. I would like to make your lip balm recipe using the powder from the inside of the capsule. Would you recommend I mix it in with an oil first or can I just add the powder?

    • Jan says:

      hmmm… that is a great question! I’m not familiar with Resveratrol to know, but I don’t see where it would hurt to mix up a small batch as an experiment. Usually when I want to add a powder to a lip balm, salve, soap or pretty much anything I make, it works best to mix it with a small amount of liquid from the recipe first (in this case, oil) until it is a super smooth paste and then stir it into the batch. Otherwise, you might get clumps. Powders tend to settle too, towards the bottom of the product unless you cool it fairly quickly. Good luck experimenting! :)

      • David says:

        I mixed up something for my 7 year old daughter last year (early winter 2013) that seemed to work pretty well. She suffered from frequent cold sores. I didn’t want to give her the high dose capsule form of Resveratrol, since she is still developing, but knowing that Resveratrol has been shown to work in mice studies, I decided to try it topically with her. Coconut oil is another one that people have had some luck with for herpes (no scientific studies that I’m aware of showing that it works specifically with herpes), so I made the balm out of coconut oil and resveratrol (500 mg of 99% pure capsule).

        I put a several tablespoons of coconut oil in a microwave safe dish and melted it (trying to ensure that it wasn’t too hot, because I didn’t want to degrade the resveratrol). I then added the powdered resveratrol from the capsule and mixed it as well as I could. I put the liquid in a container with a lid and let it solidify.

        My wife put it on my daughter’s lips nightly for a couple months, and then something happened to the container, so she stopped. During that time and for months after that, she had zero outbreaks. In the approximate year since application started, she has had one or two outbreaks (more recently). She used to get outbreaks about once per month, on average (although they were usually stopped/shortened with Abreva medicine).

        It is unclear whether it was the coconut oil, the resveratrol, the combination, or random luck, but there is absolutely no doubt that there was a dramatic change in outbreaks. As with anything like this, there are a lot of variables and what works for one person won’t necessarily work for another, but I thought I’d share in the hopes that it may help someone, just as Jan has for her balm.

        I found this page while researching coconut oil and resveratrol to see if anyone else had done something similar. I’m about to mix up a new batch for her to start using again. I may consider adding BHT to the mix too.

        Again, just more options for people.

  21. Grace G says:

    Quick question- is there a reason not to toss the herbs into the dehydrator for a few hours before using? Mine runs all summer long anyway!

  22. Jennifer says:

    Hi,
    I’m just wondering what size jar you used to infuse the lemon balm oil, i.e. how much oil should I use? It looks like you used a 12 oz mason jar. Thanks!

    • Jan says:

      Hi Jennifer! It depends on how much lemon balm you have. If you have a little bit, then use a small jar – if you have a lot, you can use a larger jar. Aim for the jar to be around 1/4 full of dried leaves, no matter what the size is, and you’ll be good to go!

  23. Brittany says:

    Hello have you ever thought about, or maybe you do but do you sale this lip balm? Unfortunately I’m limited to getting some of the ingredients! Thanks
    -Brittany

  24. Ampelgirl says:

    Hi
    How long do the lip balms take to set. I made mine about 12 hours ago and they are still runny

    • Jan says:

      Hi Ampelgirl! They should most definitely have set up by now. I would pour them from the tubes back into your melting container and add a bit more beeswax. If you want to test before you repour, just pop a metal spoon in the freezer for a few minutes, then dip it quickly into the lip balm mixture. It should set up enough so you can see if you need more beeswax (to make it firmer) or more oil (to make it softer).

  25. Cindy Reynolds says:

    Is it safe to use the oil infusion if there has been mould growing on the surface of the leaves? I made two jars and couldnt understand why one went mouldy until I read in your column that the lid was too airtight causing condensation.

    • Jan says:

      Hi Cindy! You’re right – mold comes when some sort of moisture is left in the jar and then sealed air tight. (Using completely dry herbs & making sure they’re completely covered with oil should help.) I always toss any oil that grows mold, but I do know some people scrape it off and keep going as long as it smells fresh. It should not be used for items you sell though.

  26. Fransisca Xu says:

    Thanks Jan, for the great help…I need some tips because I hardly can find all of the ingredients that you mention. May be you can advise me about refined shea butter and pure cocoa butter…can I change the shea butter with pure cocoa butter, which one is better in your opinion?
    Thanks again, good day!

    • Jan says:

      Hi Fransisca! The main active part of this recipe is the lemon balm infused oil plus beeswax (or another wax) to hold it together. If you can’t get the shea butter, then that’s okay, you can leave it out. (As it’s solid at room temperature, it won’t affect the recipe as much as leaving out a liquid oil.) It’s also fine to use cocoa butter instead of shea butter (just keep in mind that cocoa butter can trigger dry, peeling, red skin in some people, so if the lip balm makes things worse, consider that first as a culprit.) You could start with: 6 tablespoons lemon balm infused oil to 2 tablespoons beeswax. Anything extra you can put in would help (especially tamanu oil or maybe the tea tree oil), but they are more bonus ingredients to give the lip balm more oomph. I hope that helps!

  27. Fransisca Xu says:

    Hi Jan…asking again :D i think i want to start seeding some herb plant that you mention…and become really interesting with Calendula flower for this whole cold sore remedy. The problems i don’t know there’s so many variety of Calendula officinalis…does it mater of what cultivars that we choose? Like Art of Shade, Pacific Beauty, or Princess mix…these are some available in my country :)

    I know my journey is still long, but i’m just wondering it will be better to create compound infused oil or just brew two or three herbs in different container than drop a few spoon of every containers when we’re ready to make lip balm?

    As always, thank u for ur kindest help :)

  28. Kiran says:

    Is there anything else I can use/ substitute lemon balm infused oil with

    • Jan says:

      Hi Kiran! The main ingredient to fight against cold sores is lemon balm. So, you can put another infused oil (like calendula or plantain or violet), but it won’t have the components that fight the virus that causes cold sores. Instead you’ll have regular lip balm, that will be good for chapped lips though.

  29. Femmepharoh says:

    Hi. I haven’t yet made the lemon balm lip stuff yet. My herbs will arrive from Mountain Rose Herbs, tomorrow! I’m so looking forward to making this combo between their ‘Green Salve’ blend, (with almost all the other herbs I’ve seen u suggest for good healing ingredients), and the ‘Lemon Balm’ infused oils.
    I did want to mention ur not wanting to use camphor on the lips, due to it not being safe to ingest. Well, today I had to break down and buy some Blistex for my very chapped lips, since all my ingredients have yet to arrive.
    The first thing I did was to check the active ingredients for some inspiration for my ‘Winter Lips’ and the very first thing listed, is Camphor! Just FYI.
    I can’t wait til everything gets here, so I can get started! Very excited! Thanx for the recipes, info and inspiration. :)

    • Jan says:

      How exciting – getting a Mountain Rose Herbs order is so much fun! :) Thanks for the information on camphor in Blistex; that’s helpful to know! I hope you have a wonderful time creating your herbal goodies!

  30. Suzan says:

    Wow, can’t wait to try this. I have my lemon balm steeping right now. I was wondering where to buy the tins so I can give it as gifts to friends and family. Thanks for the amazing recipe.

    • Jan says:

      Hi Suzan, I’m glad you like the recipe! The cheapest price on tins I’ve found (so far) is at SpecialtyBottle.com.

  31. Femmepharoh says:

    Thanx to ur recipe, I have used it as a base for my balms and salves and I’m about to sell my versions online. I make a version for just ur face treatment, just ur lips balm, and one all over salve! Very healing!!! Thank U SO MUCH !!!!!!

  32. Laura says:

    I love your newsletter and your pictures are so beautiful. Where do you get your lip balm tins and blue glass jars for creams?

    • Jan says:

      Hi Laura, thanks! I get lip balm tins and the blue glass jars from specialtybottle.com. The shipping can get kind of high on these types of items, but even with that factored in, they had the best prices last time I compared. (Which admittedly, has been a few years!)

  33. Femmepharoh says:

    I can’t thank u enuf for turning me on to the Green Salve blend at Bulk Herb Store!!

  34. Tara Griggs says:

    I just made a small batch of this for my family who suffer from cold sore outbreaks. This is amazing stuff! Thank you so much for the information. I was wondering if you think it is okay to wear this lip balm even when you do not suffer from outbreaks? I love it and I am sure the antiviral properties are great to have anytime. I just want to make sure that I will not reduce its effectiveness by using it all the time. Thanks so much again for everything!

    • Jan says:

      I’m glad you like it! Yes, you can wear it more often. I have a family member who keeps it on constantly all winter, just because they love the feel of it. :)

  35. Femmepharoh (Nicole) says:

    Question for u. Inspired by ur recipe, I began infusing my own oils, but I’m running into one problem. U see, I think a little water has gotten in the oil, from when I strained out the herbs. Well, it looks as though after a while, something is beginning to cloud up around the sediment that made it thru the straining process, at the bottom of jar. I think its mold. Would u suggest that I put some Grapefruit Seed Extract in it, to inhibit mold from growing? If so, about how much per cup of infused oil? Thank u so much for ur help!

  36. Femmepharoh (Nicole) says:

    I meant, how much GSE per cup of oil, for future batches. Not to repair the mold that is already present. Sorry, I should have been more clear.
    Thanx again!

    • Jan says:

      Hi Nicole! One thing you could do after straining, is to let the freshly strained oil sit undisturbed for a couple more days. All of the sediment will settle to the bottom, then you can carefully pour off most of the pure oil into a fresh sterile & dry jar, leaving that layer of sediment behind. Any extraneous water usually settles down in that layer as well. (Unless tightly capped oil with water in it sits in the sun or gets hot, then condensation can form under the lid and mold too.) You could try GSE or rosemary extract, but from what I understand, they’re more to keep oil from going rancid than anything else. I’ve used both before, but my usual method of measuring stuff like that is in splashes. :) You could probably contact the supplier or manufacturer and see if they have more precise usage guidelines for you.

  37. Erin says:

    I am interested in making this Lemon Balm infused oil. Can that oil be used directly on cold sores?

  38. Sara says:

    Hi there- I am attempting to make the infused lemon balm oil- the fast way. I’ve had a quart jar with lemon balm (about 1/2 full) and covered to the top with regular vegetable oil simmering in a pot with water on low for about 2 days now. I just checked it, and can’t even detect a hint of lemon smell (or taste). Does that sound right?

    • Jan says:

      Hi Sara! I usually just infuse my oils the quick way for about two hours (not days). If you heat for too long, it’ll start to smell a bit fried instead of fresh. I just checked a batch I made about a week ago and places in a warm, sunny window. It has a very faint hint of lemon scent, but it’s not strong. Your final oil won’t be very lemony, so yours is probably still okay to use (unless it smells like fried leaves, then I’d restart it.)

  39. Cla says:

    I can’t find fresh lemon balm nearby me, can I use lemon balm tea bag instead? (which I found in supermarket)

  40. Kristen says:

    Jan, you are awesome & if I could, I would come to your house and hug you! I’ve recently had my first bout of cold sore misery…but I got them in my nose. Sounds so gross, I know. But since I didn’t know what I was dealing with & because I have mild allergies that make me sneeze most mornings, they just kept spreading & getting worse. Once my husband realized they were cold sores & I did my best to stop them spreading I got them slightly under control but they wouldn’t completely go away. Then I found your post. Oh my goodness, what a huge difference! I didn’t have most of the stuff for the balm, but I did have lemon balm that I dried last year. (Wasn’t sure what to do with it but I couldn’t help drying it anyway.) So since I needed to try something, I just made the infused oil & it has almost completely cleared up everything. Now that I know what I’m dealing with I will use this immediately the next time & hopefully stop the awful spreading! Thanks so much. You have so much great info here, I really appreciate all I’m learning!

    • Jan says:

      Hi Kristen, I’m so happy to hear how much your lemon balm has helped you! It’s a wonderful plant. :)

  41. Amy says:

    I found this site when I googled homemade cold sore remedy. There is so much good info. Quick question.. If I’m desperate, could I just smash some lemon balm in a grinding bowl and rub that directly on my lip as a quick method? Also, once your lip balm is applied, how long until the cold sore clears up? Thanks again for your time.

    • Jan says:

      Hi Amy, I’m not positive if rubbing smashed leaves directly on your lips will help or not, but I think it sounds like a good idea and worth a trial run! It seems to me that it would be more concentrated and fresh that way, but I really don’t know if that guess has scientific merit or not. It’s also really hard to give a time frame for when (or if) it works since everyone is so very different with different environments and diet and sun exposure and health levels. It’s just something you can try and hope it helps! (And I do hope it helps you!) :)

  42. Laurie says:

    I usually get a cold sore once per year. Today is my lucky day : (. I have lemon balm growing in my herb garden and am wondering if I could just take a leaf and place on the sore, since 4-6 weeks isn’t going to help me with the one that popped up today.

    • Jan says:

      Hi Laurie, I’m so sorry about your cold sore – they are just not fun. :/ You could definitely try a leaf or a juiced up leaf and see how it does. Several people have mentioned that in the comments, but no one has reported back yet. If it works – and I hope it does – let us know!

  43. Leanna says:

    I have an organic balm base I make in advance then melt and pour as needed. This of course means my balm is not made with infused oil (though it could be). How about adding a few drops of lemon balm EO?

  44. Jade says:

    Will you be making anymore of this lip balm. I need some for the winter drying my lips

  45. Laura says:

    Hi instead of using 4 TBS of lemon balm infused oil…How would I use Melissa essential oil instead. Its very pricy so I wanted to know exactly how much to put in with out experimenting. Hoping to grow lemon balm this summer if I can get it to grow at 10,200 ft?

    • Hi Laura! That might work well, but I’ve never used it before to know how much. If you check with the manufacturer, they might have some good usage guidelines for you.
      I hope you’re able to get your lemon balm growing! :)

  46. Peter Palmer says:

    Hi Jan, You give very specific measurements for the mixing but loose ones for the infusing. Sounds like a pint of oil over a cup of leaves. That’s a lot of oil for a recipe needing only 4 tablespoons of finished oil. Have you ever made a smaller proportioned batch? Thanks for everything!

    • Hi Peter! Infusing is more of an imprecise folksy art, rather than science, so it’s hard to find (and figure) exact amounts. However, my “Making Plant Medicine” book by Richo Cech offers some figures that might prove helpful.
      He says the basic formula for dry herb infused oils is 1:5, or dry herb weight in grams : oil in volume in ml.
      An example of how that translates would be
      100 grams dried & coarsely ground herb to 500 ml olive oil
      You could reduce that way down to make a smaller amount of infused oil. (Alternatively, if you stick with the folksy method – get a small 4 oz canning jar, fill it halfway with crumbled dried lemon balm leaves & then cover with oil to infuse).
      I hope that helps! :)

  47. Colleen says:

    I’m so excited to make some of this for a friend who suffers terrible with lip sores. I don’t have any clove bud oil but I have plenty of Thieves oil. Do you think I could substitute that?

    • Hi Colleen! I haven’t tried it to be sure, though it’s an interesting idea. You’d have to find out if it’s lip safe or not – which the manufacturer should be able to tell you. If so, then give it a go! :)

  48. Colleen says:

    Thanks so much for the reply Jan. I think I’ll give it a go.

  49. Janet Major says:

    I was wondering if you could use oregano leaf extract and thyme leaf extract in the lip balm. And if so how much would you use? I infused the oregano and thyme in oil first, then I was going to use it in the lip balm.

    • Hi Janet, That sounds like a great idea! I think you should be able to use those herbal infused oils in your lip balm. Since I haven’t tried it out personally, I’m not exactly sure how much to use, but you could do a few small sample batches to test out and find an amount you like best.

  50. Tori says:

    I was wondering if you would be able to put this into lip balm tubes, like the ones off Specialty Bottle and if so, roughly, if you had to guess, it would fill up. I was thinking of making this as a gift for next fall (I live in Maine, plenty of chapped lips to go around!) once I got my lemon balm and calendula into the ground and grown a little.

    Thanks!

    • Tori says:

      *of you had to guess, how many it would fill up. Sorry, brain was way ahead of my fingers! :,D

    • Hi Tori! Yes, you could put it in lip balm tubes, you just might need to add a smidge more beeswax so the balm is firmer and won’t squish against your lips when you use it. You can melt it several times, adjusting beeswax and oil amounts as needed until you get the texture you’d like.
      Since it fills around 7 half-ounce tins, that’s an approximate 3.5 oz yield. Lip balm tubes are generally 0.15 oz (I believe is most common size) so 3.5 oz divided by 0.15 = 23 tubes. I’m not positive that will be the exact number, but at least it gives a ballpark figure you might end up with. :)