How To Make Your Very Own Multipurpose Color Stick For Super-Cheap

Because you know what's NOT super-cheap? Fancy multipurpose color sticks.
Publish date:
March 18, 2014
cream blushes, eyeshadows, makeup, DIY, lip balms, bronzers, multitaskers, balms

Hey, remember that time it was, like, 55 degrees that one Saturday in NYC and I rode my bike for the first time since autumn and then got really bad cramped hammies because I’m actually incredibly out of shape?

No, you don’t. You weren’t there. Because if you were there, I would’ve had someone to help me stretch out them gams before and after all that vigorous cycling so no one has to hear all my caterwauling as I prostrated myself on the sofa, inch-worming my way to that consolation bowl of mint chocolate chip.

The following day was spent doing indoor activities (my favorite kind), hobbling around on my sore legs. My version of spring cleaning generally includes weeding out last season’s peplum skirts and whatever those weird tank tops with uselessly large armholes are called, gathering them up in a giant Ikea tote and taking them to any of the three buy/sell/trade clothiers in my neighborhood, making way for newer sartorial acquisitions, half of which will probably meet the same fate in a year’s time. Pay it forward, right?

Nowadays, spring cleaning includes chucking all my expired/gross/never-used makeup. I’m constantly on the hunt for multi-use products that, if I were to ever go on a spontaneous trip or fancy myself some kind of low-maintenance totally down chick, I could rely on one product to swipe and smudge my way to instant beautification. Ideally, this product will be universally flattering, work on eyes, lips, and cheeks, also be moisturizing, and fit into a clutch. Sounds like a tall order, but it’s 2014--my phone is smaller than a Kit-Kat Bar, thus proving that anything is possible.

The aisles of Sephora often have me oohing and ahhing over all the silky and lush color sticks, until I peep the price tag and go all Stanley Kowalski between the displays.

Remember that time I showed y’all how to make tinted lip balm? Well, it turns out you can pretty much do the same thing for a cream color stick, AKA a multipurpose beauty product for lips/cheeks/eyes. Onwards!

Aside from the normal butters and oils you’d cook up in a balm, the main ingredient will be whatever color your decide to make your beauty stick. I bought some colors over at For this round, I chose Brown Aruban Coral mica, which is described as a “rich velvety tan with pearl luster.”

Here’s the basic recipe I used:

• 6g beeswax (or carnauba wax if you hate bees/are vegan)

• 0.5 ml vitamin E (or two capsules if you have gel supplements)

• 6 ml argan oil

• 6 ml grapeseed oil

• 5 ml shea butter

• 1 rounded teaspoon of mica powder in whatever color you want

You can use different carrier oils if you’d like, but my skin likes these.

Get your double boiler situation going with a Pyrex glass in a saucepan with water. You can melt all this stuff in there, stirring everything together.

I got jumbo lip balm tubes and baby deodorant tubes from, which, if you’re a container freak like me, will whet your whettables. I figure, while the getting’s good (seriously, each container is less than a buck), I should make one for the house and one for my purse.

In the swatch, you can certainly see the shimmery elements up close, while on my face the effect is much more evenly spread and subtle.

I was feeling extra ambitious after this undisputed success that I used a spare pack of DIY Cosmetics’ Ox Red Iron Oxide, plus all those other ingredients, to create a matte balm.

I will say, my DIY doesn’t have the same silky texture of those fancy rich-lady brands; rather, it feels more like a drier lip balm coating my face. But hey, having a waxy moisture-sealing balm on your face isn’t such a bad thing when you consider you are only upping your facial protection; because if you’ve been outside lately in parts of the world, I am sure you have witnessed that it is still a cold and vengeful winter slapping at those cheeks with every gale of the wind. Might as well make your protection a pretty color.