5 Excellent Burt’s Bees Products In Honor Of Burt Shavitz

Burt Shavitz, the name and face behind Burt’s Bees, died last night at the age of 80 in Bangor, Maine. The quiet woodsman was just as unpretentious and hardworking as his prodcuts, which have rightfully earned a worldwide, cult-like fan base. His entire life had a movie-plot quality to it, too. Shavitz was the subject of the 2013 documentary “Burt’s Buzz,which documented his transition from Manhattan-born Army photographer for Time-Life to the rural bearded hippie we all recognize — yes, that is his face on the label of all of Burt’s Bees products. After his stint as a photographer, he settled into a quaint life as a peacefully reclusive beekeeper in Maine, peddling jars of honey out of his truck.

The Burt’s Bees business was born in 1984 when Shavitz took in a hitchhiking single mother named Roxanne Quimby, who made candles using Shavitz’s unused wax. But the brand truly catapulted into fame when Quimby concocted the brand’s iconic beeswax and clove oil lip balm — the company’s top seller to this day. Business grew from a backyard enterprise to a small converted factory in Maine, and finally to a massive expansion and relocation to North Carolina in 1994. Shavitz moved home to Maine after this final expansion, when his partnership with Quimby hit the skids. She eventually bought his stake in the company and Burt’s Bees sold to Clorox in 2007 for over $900 million. The sale of the company gave Shavitz a relatively small but not unimpressive $4 million, which went largely untouched. He chose to live his life simply and peacefully on his farm property in Maine, without running water or electricity.

When I heard this news, it, well, stung. Burt’s Bees products work like magic, are humbly priced, and boast all-natural ingredients. There are no other beauty brands like Burt’s Bees. Shavitz’s passing is a real loss for the beauty industry.

My own love for Burt’s Bees began when I first picked up the original Beeswax Lip Balm in its trademark honey-yellow plastic tube. It was different than every other lip product I’ve tried — it was moisturizing but not goopy, had a slight sheen but wasn’t glossy, and the peppermint oil left a tiny tingle on the lips. In essence, it was the perfect beauty product for someone like myself, who didn’t want to OD on cosmetics. Even the brand’s tinted shimmers were subtle, with only a slight touch of color. It was as natural as you could get. And, if you ever lost a tube — a frequent occurrence — a replacement only cost a few bucks.

So, in tribute, here are four more of the brand’s addictive products I can’t live without. Thanks, Burt.


Nothing compares to the classic Burt’s Bees Beeswax Lip Balm. It’s cheap, applies on thick, and lasts a while. Don’t kiss without it!


This hydrating Milk & Honey Body Lotion is like the anti-Vaseline with its lightweight and absorbing formula. Plus, the milk and honey blend smells like a sweet dessert.


At only $10 a pop, this Brightening Daily Facial Cleanser with infused daisy extract promises to brighten the face as it removes the day’s buildup.


Perfect for the gal who doesn’t want full-on lipstick — these nourishing Lip Shimmers offer that subtle-enough tint of color for everyday wear.


New moms swear by the Burt’s Bees “Baby Bee” infant line for good reason: A moisturized baby is a happy baby. This gentle Nourishing Baby Oil is so good, it’s no wonder some moms still use it way after the child has grown.