Last night I couldn’t find my chapstick. I can’t live without my Burt’s Bees lip balm, especially in winter. I ransacked my purse, all jacket and coat pockets, my bathrooms, but to no avail.
I tried just ignoring the pain for a while, but found myself almost unable to function because my dry, chapped lips hurt so bad! I kept wondering,
“If it hurts this bad for me, how did my poor ancestors survive before lip balm was invented?”
This question sent me on a history hunt!
I just *had* to know how my ancestors kept their lips from developing dry, cracked, and bleeding sores.
Here’s what I learned–it might come in handy when writing about dry, brittle winters in the lives of my ancestors:
- The most well-known commercial lip balm (Chapstick) was invented in the 1880′s
- Chapstick was invented mere minutes from my home! (In Lynchburg, Virginia, as you can see in the ad, above)
- I’m betting local apothecaries had been making and selling lip balms even earlier than this date
- Home remedies for lip balm appear in recipe books as early as the 1600′s
** The Remedies/Recipes
The remedies, from Toilet of Flora (1779), a highly entertaining book of vintage remedies that you can download to your Kindle for free:
Speaking of lip balm (and completely off the topic of ancestors), while doing my research on this topic, I stumbled across the coolest lip balm invention: check out these lip balms that come in gun cartridges!