Sunday, April 14, 2013

Lip Balm

A main beauty obsession of mine is lip balm. I can't abide by a minute without something on my lips. I remember my freshman year in high school, where I would set my huge, chunky Bath and Body Works chapstick on my desk and apply it a dozen times or so during each class. It appears my "problem" hasn't subsided... So, here are some of my current favorites, with their pros and cons.

You'll notice I have some tinted balms mixed in with un-tinted ones. I probably own like three or four true lip sticks. Everything else is a gloss or balm. So, to add some color to my daily routines, I love to use tinted balms.

I found this product while feasting my reading eyes on my most recent addiction, Essie Button. Being a yank (correction: Southern yank), I rarely get to buy all the fun things I see all the across-the-pond beauties rave about. When I saw this on Birchbox's website {AND free shipping} I just could not pass 'er up! 
It's foundational ingredient is honey. It smells so pure and sweet (with some citrus hints). It also goes on a bit gritty, but then your body heat takes care of the granules - much like putting honey in or on something warm melts it. Many balms go on glossy, but I love how this just settles in subtly. It doesn't appear you have anything gooey and healthy on, so topping it with a lipstick or gloss is just fine. 
It also last for eons! 
The only con (for me - and it's not really a con in real life...) is that it's in a pot. It's a beautiful glass pot, but it's not quick and easy to swipe on while driving. So, it tends to stay at home in the bathroom where I use it in the evenings or when I'm lounging about. 
One other thing - what are the darn ingredients? I cannot find them online anywhere. It was probably on the box, but I'm terrible about tossing packaging. So, I am curious as to whether it's really as healthy as it seems.
The website also says to use it on cuticles and small burns. I haven't done that yet but will definitely try to remember to!

Let's be real... this is more fun than practical. In a normal tube this product would be considered of the mill. But put it in a ball and call it a "Smooth Sphere" and you've got yourself a niche-y winner! 
I saw this at my local Target recently and had to snatch it up. I like the smell, though I am not a huge fruity flavor person. It goes on well (somewhat thinner) and lasts a good amount of time. 
I'm really attracted to it being organic, paraben free and sweetened with stevia (as opposed to saccharin or sucralose). 
I also love the shape of it. It's easy to find this "ball" in the bottom of your purse (while driving... I tend to need to moisturize during that daily drudgery). 
I also feel like a little kid every time I apply it. I hope someone is watching, thinking Man, I wish I had her lip balm! Silly... I know. 
Only con is how little it's available in my area. This flavor is the only one I've seen locally. However, I recently found the Sweet Mint EOS at ULTA (which was like a 45 minute drive...). Love it, though!

Speaking of mint... For years I've been addicted to Burt's Bees original Beeswax Lip Balm Tube. Who isn't?!? It's $3 on their website, but I'm pretty sure I've seen it higher in stores... a bit on the high side for a boring ol' chapstick, so when I stumbled across this goodie in Whole Foods at the check out stand I grabbed it up. (Kudos to your add-on skills, WFs!) It was LESS than $2 (crazy talk), organic (and a bargain?!?) and it's mint (perfect). 
And in case you didn't know this about me... 
I once bought 6 boxes of my favorite mint green tea online because they were discontinuing it. 
The only facial water I can stand is Caudalie's elixir which has what some describe an obnoxious minty smell. (Disagree!)
I also use peppermint essential oils to relieve headaches, add to drinking water, and rub into sore muscles.
I even sniff it! (At least it's that and not Sharpies... though I do think there is something kind of disturbingly good smelling about those...? Right?)
Back to the balm... I once lost this puppy for two days and tore the house up looking for it. My husband said, "Just buy another one..." Are you kidding me? I don't leave a product in the lurch like that - especially my best, brightest and most loyal! Abandonment was not an option; I finally located her; and we've been inseparable ever since.

Burt's Bees Tinted Lip Balm in Rose - $7
Because I do love all things Burt's, I have to include this goodie. Although the packaging it came in was fun and almost keep-able, the tube itself is not fun or sexy. Good! It's easy to use. I can blindly grab it from my bag, swipe it on without a mirror and toss it back in.
It doesn't feel especially healing or treatment-like, but the pigment is a fun extra to add to an already great lip balm. I like how many color options there are. I've owned two of these, and this shade was the most pigmented on my lips.
Like I said before, I do love me some Burt's original beeswax balm, but the tint makes this my current go - to.

Keeping on the same tint track...
I would definitely consider this a more luxury item. Granted it is only a few bucks more than the Nuxe, but being that it's heavily tinted, it's not as versatile. (ie. Use before bed or under lippies).
It does feel heavenly, and it provides a major pop of color. 
A few dry-shampoo, sock bun Sundays ago I wore it with highlighter, mascara and fuschia blush and got a compliment on how my makeup was "glowing"! I was the best looking hobo in Tennessee... 
It lasts quite a long time, too. 
A pro and con: the packaging. I love that it's a metal tube, it's beautiful and feels really cool. However, I have to twist it up (and back down) every time I use it. And the topper screws onto the tube. So, it's not a one-hander. The downside to the metal part of the equation, I found, is that if it's in your pocket your body heat will be conducted by the metal and melt the balm. Mine is now all kinds of lumpy and melted. When I apply it, the stick pushes over the side. For $22 I would expect it to not be so soft, unless they put it in a pot. Despite the packaging and application issues, it's still a enjoyable "treatment." It smells divine - lemon-y and fresh!
I received it as a Birthday gift from Sephora, so I am not complaining too much. However, I will probably just enjoy it while it lasts and not repurchase. I just might have to resort to a lip brush... and it will be worth it.
Although it's paraban, sulfate, phthalate, etc free, it does score a 7 on EWG's Skin Deep database for a sizeable list of other undesirables. Disappointing! Another reason I won't repurchase but will enjoy in the meantime.

I included this balm in my January Favourites post. I've had it for years and years. It is probably  the best bang for my buck in this post. Ten ounces for $9!?! Amazing. 
As ranchers were milking cows and applying this to their udders they realized how soft their hands were getting. The rest is history.
I mainly use it on my lips (big ol' blob!) before bed. I also like to put a huge dollop on my feet, then socks and sleep on that for softer tootsies, too. 
I have used it on my cuticles before, but it made my polish bubble up... Twice. Weird! I avoid that now.
Being that you don't really find this in health food stores, I wondered how non-toxic it could be. I was pleased to find it scored a 1 on EWG's Skin Deep database!
Only cons are 1) it will last until I die, so I probably won't ever try anything else again that is similar. I have my eye on some Badger Balm. And 2) it smells a little weird. Just think, cows don't care about fragrance.

What about you lovelies? What lip-savers do you trust your kissers to?

Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment in Rose

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