Make Your Own Smith’s Rosebud Salve

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Homemade Smith's Rosebud Salve

The Smith’s Rosebud Salve is so popular that I’ve been noticing it everywhere, even in the checkout line at Nordstrom Rack. I decided I had to figure out why it’s so popular and is it natural? I, of course, also needed to figure out if I could concoct a recipe for a DIY Smith’s Rosebud Salve!

Below is what is listed in the description.

  • A favorite of master make-up artists and models, this cult-favorite multi-purpose balm soothes dry lips, calms skin irritations, conditions the rough skin of elbows and knees and takes the sting out of minor burns.
  • The original, one and only Rosebud salve was first prepared by a druggist in 1892

After trying it out myself, I will say it is a lovely product. It has a subtle scent of rose and is slightly glossy and soft. However, with the ingredient list being what it is, it is not really a healing product with many skin benefits. My guess is it simply relieves the uncomfortableness of dry lips and skin without really addressing the actual issue. 

The full list of ingredients of Smith’s Rosebud Salve is: Pure White Petrolatum (Surgical Grade), Cotton Seed Oil, Trade Secret Blend of Essential Oils, Botanicals.

As you might have expected, it’s petroleum based so it’s a no go. But the thing is, it’s got such a lovely color as well as consistency and slip! So, of course I set out to make my own minus the petroleum and what I suspect is a synthetic fragrance! Below is the picture I took of the real Rosebud Salve at Ulta

Another cult classic product, Vaseline is also petroleum based and a super easy DIY. You might also be interested in my petroleum free recipe for Neosporin and Vapor Rub as well!

DIY Smith's Rosebud Salve

I had intended to use mica powder to color this balm but found that using a sliver of lipstick gave a better, more even color. I also struggled to get the right texture. The real rosebud salve is pretty soft. It’s also shiny so both of these factors created a challenge!

The pink tint is not intended to add substantial color to the lips. 

DIY Smith’s Rosebud Salve:

1/4 cup Sweet Almond Oil (find it HERE)

1/2 TBSP. Beeswax (find it HERE)

1/2 tsp. Castor Oil (find it HERE)

10 drops of Rose Absolute Essential oil (find it HERE)

Sliver of dark pink lipstick (I used THIS lipstick) See the pic below for the amount and color.


  1. Fill a medium sized pot half way full with water.
  2. Place a glass pyrex measuring cup in the water.
  3. Add all ingredients except the essential oil and allow to thoroughly melt.
  4. Make sure to thoroughly mix the lipstick.
  5. Remove from heat and add essential oils.
  6. Pour into a 1 ounce tin like THIS
  7. Allow to thoroughly cool before using. 

DIY Smith's Rosebud Salve

“Since 1895 Smith’s Rosebud Salve has been helping prevent lips from chapping and healing cuts, while soothing cuticles and aiding in moisturizing elbows and knees. Use to highlight cheekbones, décolletage, tame frizzies and unruly eyebrows.”

If you’ve ever made a salve, you know how multipurpose they can be. Above is another description I found about Smith’s Rosebud Salve. My DIY version can perform all of these tasks as well. Obviously, if you need it for more than a lip balm, you will want to omit or reduce the lipstick. 

Never have I had so many retries with a DIY. It took a lot to get this one right. I think I remade it at least 3x! I am happy how the final Smith’s Rosebud Salve DIY turned out and think I nailed this dupe! 

More DIY or BUY Posts:

xx, Jenni


DIY Smith's Rosebud Salve

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Jennifer Phillips worked as a licensed aesthetician for over 8 years before creating the green beauty blog, Jenni Raincloud and her natural skin care line, J. Raincloud Organics. Jennifer has been blogging full time for 7 years and loves to gain and share knowledge on living a natural lifestyle.

10 thoughts on “Make Your Own Smith’s Rosebud Salve”

  1. Can I use a pigment of color other than the lipstick? I love the color of this and was wondering if there was something I can use in stead. Thank you.

    1. Judy-Mica powder is probably the next best thing. You can find it on Amazon. I’ve tried hibiscus powder and beet root powder but they leave a grainy texture.

  2. My girls love this! I used a dark purple lipstick that my older daughter had lying around, and used lavender and baslm of Peru essential oils. It made a really lovely lavender lip gloss!

  3. Thank you for sharing this! I need to print it out and then purchase what I don’t have. Rosebud Salve does smell wonderful and I love how smooth it is, however I don’t like to use petroleum ingredients.
    I’ll be looking at your other recipes, too.
    Sincerely, Tambra Nicole

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