How to fix melted beard balm

beard 2016_07_21I have a beard. To keep that beard manageable, sleek, and aromatic, I like to use balms and oils. Lately, I’ve really been into Mod Cabin products. Not cheap, but really high quality, great scents, great products. Pretty much every morning, I use one of their Beard Balms; right now, I’m using the “Backwoods” version (“warm, woodsy scent of cedarwood and fir”).

Anyway, on a recent trip to Charleston for work, I was in a situation in which I had to check out of my hotel in the morning but still spend the day downtown, with my bags locked in my car—including my toiletries bag.

I discharged my duties, returned to my car, and drove home.

The next morning, I discovered that a closed-up car in Charleston, West Virginia in July had not been a great habitat for my beard balm. I wish I had taken a picture, but here is how I described the result in an email I sent to Mod Cabin:

IMG_7436“I left my beard balm in the car on a hot day, which obviously I should have known not to do. The result seems to have been permanent change to the consistency–like different ingredients separated, maybe, and the whole substance is now permanently softened (even though it’s long been back in a relatively cool place). Is there anything I can do “revive” it, or should I just chalk it up to experience? Thanks!”

Here is what I heard back from Cori Gray, one of the company’s co-founders:

“Thanks for contacting us about your balm. Just so you know, what you’ve experienced with your balm becoming gritty is actually caused by the balm not cooling rapidly enough after being heated. The particles in the shea butter cool at different rates, and certain particles will bond together creating a gritty feel. It actually shouldn’t effect the efficacy of the balm, and the grit should melt in your hands if it’s rubbed between your palms long enough.

IMG_7438“If the balm doesn’t feel smooth and silky after you’ve emulsified it in your palms, then you can try remelting the balm by preheating the oven to the lowest setting, and placing the tin on a baking sheet and putting it in the oven for 5 – 10 minutes. (Or just set it back on the dash of your car!) Remove the baking sheet and use an oven mitt or a spatula to immediately, but carefully, transfer the tin of balm to the freezer for an hour. After an hour you can take them out of the freezer and let them return to room temperature. Once they’ve returned to room temperature you can test them out, and they should feel normal again.

“I hope you find that information helpful. Let me know if you have any questions, and if that technique works out for you.”

Emulsifying it in my palm didn’t really work; the little pellets of shea butter just never seemed to soften up. So, eventually, I tried Cori’s advice for remelting and then freezing the stuff. What do you know—it worked! I thought I would share it here in case this happens to anyone else.

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