I always loved lip balms as a kid (and adult). Who doesn’t have lip balm stashed away in every bag you own? Over the years, I collected new flavours, in pots, in tubes and even in bulk. I’ve tried almost every brand on the Aussie market.

In my late teens when I was studying Pharmacy at UniSA, I had a Vitamin B12 deficiency which resulted in receiving weekly injections. Little did I know that there was an uncommon side effect from high doses of Vitamin B12 – causing or exacerbating acne (not ideal). A few weeks into the injections, my skin went from crystal clear to severe cystic acne – the type that leads to permanent scarring.

Thankfully, my doctors at the time were quick to recognise the issue and treated me accordingly. I was prescribed a medication called Isotrentinoin – more commonly known as Roaccutane. As fantastic as this drug is at clearing up your skin, it also has some nasty side effects that new users should be aware of, one of which is extremely dry skin. I’m not talking irritated, itchy, dry skin… I’m talking so dry your lips would literally crack and bleed if you didn’t apply lip balm every hour. Not to mention the effects on other parts of your skin. It was an extremely uncomfortable feeling.

Despite my impressive range of lip balms I had collected over the years, none of them worked for long. My lips either became more irritated or the relief lasted less than a few minutes. I tried everything! A pharmacy colleague suggested I try lanolin (traditionally used for breastfeeding mothers with cracked nipples) and it was an absolute life saver! I spent the next few weeks mixing lanolin with several other ingredients until I created the best formula for my irritated, dry lips. My final formulation stayed on my lips for longer than other lip balms and didn’t cause any further irritation. Most importantly it made my lips feel hydrated and soft again! The relief was palpable, almost indescribable.

I never envisioned that over ten years later I would have perfected that formula which I now share with you all – give The Alchemist Lab Lip Balm a try! It comes in 8 different flavours with 3 new additions soon to be released!

I understand first hand that there is no one size fits all approach when it comes to skincare. My personal journey has allowed me to create, test and perfect formulas that are suitable for sensitive and allergy prone skin but are also, in most cases, able to be tailor made to suit your individual needs. So, if you suffer from allergies or have had difficulties finding lip products that suit your skin, get in contact with us. I would love to hear your stories and feedback!


Anastasia Tomeo
Pharmacist and Co-Founder