Book Review: Crafting Holistic Beauty Products

By Paris Wolfe, Blogmaster, The Herb Society of America

Lip balm is among the easiest beauty products to make, says Shannon Buck, author of “200 Tips, Techniques, and Recipes IMG_3182for Natural Beauty” published in September, 2014, by Fair Winds Press ($19.99).

“Folks are always pleasantly surprised to find out how easy it is to craft. Once you learn how inexpensive and enjoyable it can be to handcraft your own lip balm, you may never want to buy store bought again,” she waxes enthusiastically.

Shannon’s interest in herbs has been evolving since she was a young girl inspired by her mother. ”I remember wildcrafting with my mom in the mountains of Wyoming and the flavor of Horehound throat lozenges,” she says.

In 2011, she enrolled in the East West School of Planetary Herbology’s Herbalist Program in and the Aromatherapy Program at Bastyr University in Kenmore, WA. Eventually that led to a blog Fresh-Picked Beauty at and teaching Therapeutic Uses of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy at a few colleges in Seattle.

”My present focus,” she says, “is how herbs can benefit the skin and help us age beautifully.”

Among her favorites is lavender, she notes. “I use the essential oil as a solution for tension, minor burns and other skin problems. I think everyone should have this herb in easy reach.”

Like many of us, Shannon is cautious of chemical-laden commercial products. “With my book you can create lotions and potions using all-natural, holistic ingredients. You’ll learn about carrier oils, butters, and floral extracts,” she says. “With step-by-step photographs, and expert tips, each recipe produces beauty products to use or give as gifts.”

book photoWhile that’s a succinct summary of the book, it barely captures the dynamic, valuable content on each of the 144 pages. Photos, charts and full-color visual organization make the content easy to reference. In fact, they entice you from page to page until you’ve accidentally perused the entire book. It’s a must-have.

If you’re not ready to buy the book, sample Shannon’s expertise at her blog – Fresh Picked Beauty.

For would-be authors, Shannon advises, “If you are passionate about a particular topic and would like to write a book, get in touch with a number of literary agents with your idea and see what happens. Once you get your book deal, remain motivated and transfer all your enthusiasm onto the pages.”

Shannon lives in Woodinville, Washington with her wonderful husband and two beautiful children. When she’s not writing, blogging or working with herbs, she enjoys spending time at her family’s lake house in Chelan, Washington.

“200 Tips, Techniques, and Recipes for Natural Beauty” is available at major retailers and online at,,,, and her blog.  She also sells products on Etsy.