Burt’s Bees, for shame.

Via Waylon Lewis
on Apr 29, 2012
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 How to make Bay Rum cologne.

A great eco gift for your favorite gentleman (or yourself).

“An old-time barber shop fragrance.”

“Sailors in the 16th century discovered that the West Indies bay leaf made a great perfume to freshen up and mask the stink they acquired while being stuck on a ship for months.”

Burt’s Bees used to be one of my favorite companies for the single fact that everything they made, like say Newman’s Own, had both humor and quality to it. And…yes, they made the only natural Bay Rum cologne I knew of. I used it for 10 years, though they dumbed it down (taking out the cinnamon, cloves) over the years. Then, Clorox bought Burt’s and discontinued the line.

To this day, I still try and buy old Burt’s Bees Bay Rum off of ebay.

Why do I love Bay Rum, so? It’s not synthetic. In fact, it’s been around for centuries.

It’s subtle: it doesn’t smell like alcohol-ee d-baggish Axe-ish cologne. It smells like Man, plus Forest, and it combines to turn evasive beautiful women into cuddle-wanting beautiful women. I recommend it.

Also, as someone who’s 1) incredibly active (I bike, climb, do yoga regularly) and 2) loves vintage cowboy shirts that are, more often than not, made out of stink-crazy polyester, I need the stuff.

And that’s how this here eco bachelor who barely knows how to cook found himself, two days ago, in Rebecca’s Apothecary, buying Allspice and the like.

Now all I need is Jamaican Dark Rum and Bay Leaves (not the kind you get in a grocery, I have no idea where to get ’em) and I’m in business.

Ingredients here.




Bay Rum Aftershave ingredients via Redroots (click for how-to):

Note from Waylon: I also add star anise and cloves, and don’t add the orange—this is more Burt’s Bees’ style.


About Waylon Lewis

Waylon Lewis, founder of elephant magazine, now elephantjournal.com & host of Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis, is a 1st generation American Buddhist “Dharma Brat." Voted #1 in U.S. on twitter for #green two years running, Changemaker & Eco Ambassador by Treehugger, Green Hero by Discovery’s Planet Green, Best (!) Shameless Self-Promoter at Westword's Web Awards, Prominent Buddhist by Shambhala Sun, & 100 Most Influential People in Health & Fitness 2011 by "Greatist", Waylon is a mediocre climber, lazy yogi, 365-day bicycle commuter & best friend to Redford (his rescue hound). His aim: to bring the good news re: "the mindful life" beyond the choir & to all those who didn't know they gave a care. elephantjournal.com | His first book, Things I would like to do with You, is now available.


8 Responses to “Burt’s Bees, for shame.”

  1. Shielagh says:

    Thanks for the recipe, Waylon! A soap making friend will be so glad for it. Btw, I’ve avoided Burt’s Bees due to their ubiquitous use of beeswax, since learning that many kept bees suffer from their captivity due to pollen collectors that often albeit accidentally remove legs with the pollen. Plus my vegan ethos tells me to avoid exploiting animals “wherever practicable,” and there’s almost always a luscious plant-based alternative.

  2. Radha says:

    try Mountain Rose Herbs for these ingredients!! http://www.mountainroseherbs.com/index.php?AID=12

    and yes, sadly Burt's Bees has been bought out. I didn't know Clorox owned them… I knew Revlon originally bought them from "Burt"… perhaps its the same company…. yuck.

  3. Awesome! I love Mountain Rose Herbs. Good tip, thanks.

  4. Waylon Lewis says:

    Local beekeepers are pretty good about that, or better I think. We did an article on the subject—remember too that supporting responsible bee keeping (as opposed to trucking them around and killing them slowly):

    Can you be a vegan beekeeper? http://www.bit.ly/ImkkEg

  5. Hmm, just a little something to consider here—alcohol, citrus and cinnamon are really irritating for the skin. I'm sure this smells wonderful but you may want to think about just dabbing it on the collar of that cowboy shirt instead of splashing it on your face as an after shave. Skin irritation is sneaky, we don't always see visible signs on irritation but the damage being done under the surface is there, nonetheless. I hope people with acne, eczema, rosacea and other sensitive skin types will be careful putting this on their skin. "Natural" is no indicator of effectiveness, safety, usefulness or quality, and just because something smells good and is "natural" doesn't make it good for skin. That said, this seems like it would smell amazing and I'm definitely thinking about whipping up a batch to dab on my husband's collar! http://www.cosmeticscop.com/skin-irritation-your-

  6. alex says:

    rooohhh, it attracts beautiful ladies to cuddle, i'll try it 🙂

  7. JPinDC says:

    I happen to know someone who worked for the company from the pre-acquisition days. He left the company because they were engaging in questionable practices and did not feel it was an ethical company. So I don't think it can all be blamed on the buy-out — there were serious problems prior to that time.

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