3 Uses for Beeswax That’ll Have Your Hair, Skin, And Clothes Looking Their Best — Because It’s Not Just For Lip Balm Anymore

During a particularly harsh bout of chapped lips that seemed to last an entire winter, I traded my stand-by medicated lip balm for a stick of Burt's Bees nourishing lip balm. It was the best decision I ever made on behalf of my mouth, not only because it was how I learned of the many uses for beeswax. I've coveted several of the many shades of Burt's tinted lip balm and it's rare to see my lips without it anymore. It may have been the Burt family that first introduced me to beeswax, but I must admit that aside from making my own lip balms, I didn't know even half of all the things beeswax is good for until recently.

Beeswax is an exceptional natural alternative to mineral oil. Mineral oil is made from petroleum, and I have a hard and fast rule about using the same products on my bodyas cars do on theirs. That's not to say that mineral oil isn't relatively safe in skin products, but sources like Yumyucky.com and Beauty Lies Truth claim that mineral oil can elevate estrogen levels in our bods, not to mention has been linked to climate change in its crude form. Whether or not you believe the hype about mineral oil, one thing is for sure: Beeswax has been proven to be far safer and more effective. Trust that.

Beeswax is brought to you by adorable worker bees that form the beeswax to raise their young in honeycomb cells. Although beeswax is processed poorly when ingested by humans, it has major skin benefits when applied topically. Beeswax carries antiviral, anti-inflammatory, and antibacterial properties that are essential in fighting chapped skin and bacterial infections that tend to affect us most in the dry, winter months. It forms a protective wall by sealing in moisture in our skin without smothering and clogging up the pores. Plus, beeswax contains vitamin A which has been proven in multiple studies to reduce wrinkles and age spots while re-hydrating and reconstructing damaged skin cells.

When you think of beeswax, don't just think of lip balm, because this ingredient has several different beauty benefits that can protect your skin AND your outerwear. These are just a few ways that beeswax can save your look from some harsh, winter blues.

Dreadlocks Maintenance

Murray's 100% Pure Australian Beeswax , $6, Amazon

Dreads are arguably a fairly easy style to maintain, but leave your dreads in despair for too long and they'll start breaking off. To retain the tightness and smoothness of your dreadlocks, heat 100 percent organic beeswax in a saucepan on low heat. Begin at the root of each dread and roll into the wax, using the palm of your hand, until the dread is completely covered. There are many over-the-counter products that contain beeswax for waxing dreads, but you can find pure beeswax (which means not additives) for about six bucks at your local beauty supply store.

Skin Infections

Murray's 100% Pure Australian Beeswax , $6, Amazon Trader Joe's Organic Raw Honey, $14, AmazonTrader Joe's Grapeseed Oil (2 Pac), $24, Amazon

Some people are more prone to bacterial skin infections then others, but even if you've only gotten one from swimming in quarry thats water turned out to be not so pure, treating a bacterial skin infection can be an exhausting task. One great recipe that was researched by the Dubai Specialized Medical Center in the United Arab Emirates for treating and relieving irritation combined olive oil, honey, and beeswax. This all-natural, topical treatment can replace petroleum based products that can take longer to fight against the bacteria. Try grapeseed oil instead of olive for a lighter formula with plenty of skin benefits.

Waterproof Shoes

Finally! An ingredient that you can use to protect your skin AND your new boots! To use beeswax as a natural protectant against snow and rain, rub beeswax it onto your footwear and apply heat to seal in the protection. This trick will save you from the serious regret that comes from leaving your rain boots at work all weekend only to wake up to a downpout on Monday. I mean, we've all been there, haven't we?

Note: While beeswax is completely vegetarian, containing no animal flesh, it is not considered vegan. Beeswax is made specifically for bees by bees and is very much a necessary product for the survival of bees.

Image: Kit/Flickr; Giphy; Kristin Collins Jackson