22 January, 2014


I am so excited to share what happened with my tallow balm adventure.  If you're a vegan, I can't promise you'll like this because I'm not a vegan and I cringed at first.

Tallow is the hard fat on a cow, rendering is simply melting it down.

I was inspired to make this because Sebastian was suffering from some of the driest winter skin I had ever seen. After reading about how this can cure eczema I thought we should give it a shot. It also makes sense using something so biologically compatible with our skin and I love that I know what is in it.

We now use this all over our faces and bodies and after one application Sebastian's skin was noticeably softer. I love spreading it on my face before bed; my skin is soft and glowing in the morning and I wish I had made it sooner.

I was able to purchase already rendered tallow from local, grass-fed cows at our butcher in town. If you're needing to render your own tallow (which also is super easy) follow this link. However you do it, it should be really cheap-- even from local and grass-fed cows. I bought 500g for less than £2.

Here you are. A recipe for super easy, healthy, and inexpensive body balm. You can even eat it, and that's the kind of stuff we like to put on our bodies.

Tallow Balm adapted from Vintage Tradition
(Makes about 1 cup of balm)

tallow (I used about 250g or 8oz)
1 oz extra virgin olive oil
15 drops essential oil of choice (I used citrus)

Melt tallow gently in oven at about 120ºF/50ºC.  

While tallow is still liquid but not hot, stir in olive oil. This makes the tallow spreadable once cool. I used 8 parts tallow to 1 part olive oil for a soft butter consistency. Add essential oils. These scents should be noticeable and will mask the tallow's strong smell but your balm will most likely still smell like beef (I've found this fades pretty quickly after each application).

Pour into a glass jar and place in refrigerator to cool. Keeps at room temperature for 6-12 months.


  1. Won't this one freak the relatives out a little. Love it! :) Does it smell fresh enough with the essential oil in it?

  2. I wouldn't recommend citrus essential oils as they are photo reactive and in some people can cause discoloration! The good old standbys of tea tree, peppermint, rosemary, etc are all good though. I make this too and use yang yang, rose and lavender... it's heavenly. Also, I highly recommend using a high quality olive oil, cold expeller pressed.

    1. It is my understanding that the photo reactive oils only cause sensitivity when exposed to direct sunlight. We've never had issues with discolouration, even when using citrus oils neat. We love to use lavender as well!