My Lip Gloss Be Poppin’

13 Mar

Every once in a while, I obsess about something other than mermaids or frozen yogurt. Right now, it’s tinted lip balms.

Last summer I spent a good 7 hours researching glosses, trying to find something that added visible color but didn’t feel thick or tacky, and added a little shine without being, you know, reflective. It didn’t take me long to discover what I was really looking for: tinted lip balm.

Since then, I’ve been trying out a bunch  o’ balms, and want to share my product reviews* with you.

*What makes me qualified to write product reviews? Nothing really. Except I like stuff, I have opinions, I don’t have a lot of money to spend on nonsense, and I don’t get free stuff from people who want me to sell said stuff on their behalf (like many beauty blogs). In other words, I’m just like you!

Fresh Sugar Tinted Lip Treatment in Rose

At $22.50 for a full size tube, this was the most expensive one I tried. It’s based on the nature of sugar as a natural moisture sealant (single eyebrow raise). It provides buildable coverage, six hours of moisture, and an SPF of 15. I loved the beautiful blush color, and it did make my lips feel luxuriantly moist without being sticky. But holy Moses, it melts way too easily. Sitting on top of my desk in an air-conditioned office, it still had to be applied carefully in a mirror to keep it from smearing all over my lip line (if I want to carefully apply something, I’d just stick with lipstick). The stick of balm itself listed to the side like a sinking ship after just a couple uses. I shudder to think what would happen to a tube left in the car or a pocket.

Verdict: nice, but not worth the cash

Burt’s Bees Tinted Lip Balm in Hibiscus

Burt is my homeboy, just ask my ancient Facebook group of the same name. I’ve been using the classic balm for years, so when I came across a two-pack of colored balm at CVS for $10, I definitely wanted to give it a go. I found it kind of strange that a company whose reputation is built on natural, green-ness would have so much extraneous packaging for a tube that is exactly the same size as a regular balm. But as far as the product itself, I’m very impressed. Hibiscus is a subtle color but still a significant difference from plain lips. If it had the peppermint tinge of the original, I’d give it an A++ in soothing-ness. It wears off very fast, but I ran into that problem with everything I tried.

Verdict: definitely worthwhile

Maybelline Baby Lips in Pink Punch (left)

This balm wins the prize for wildest claim, which was that it would actually improve the overall condition your lips in one week—I believe they used the phrase “virtually reborn.” I scored a two-pack in the clearance section at Target one day and said alright, make me a believer. The colorful graffiti-looking tube wins my vote for cutest, but unless you have the lips of Elvis it’s really too wide in diameter for something with color—about the size of Burt’s fake-out packaging, actually. The Pink Punch is horrible on me; a weird, frosty, hot pink. Thankfully the other tube was colorless. I don’t know if my lips have been revolutionized, but it does feel really nice. And at less than $3, I might try some of the other colors. One other caveat—even though it doesn’t melt, it gets used up very fast. Mine is almost gone and I bought it less than two months ago.

Verdict: grab it in the check out line, but don’t  go out of your way

Hard Candy Megawatt Smile in Hot Pink

Technically billed as a lipstick, this puppy pulls double duty: the color end has a “shimmery core” with a blue tint that makes teeth appear whiter, and the other end is a little bottle of tooth whitening gel. The only color left when I picked it up at Walmart was the hot pink, which looked a little intense, but I thought I could use it for a night out. Surprisingly, it wasn’t nearly as bright as I feared. In fact, it’s the perfect saturation of color—not at all sheer, but not bright matte either. But here’s the cool part: the shimmery core has a balm-like effect that works just as well as the Bert’s. My lips actually feel moisturized. I do use the whitening gel (my daily coffee habit does some damage), but I worry a bit about the effect on my enamel so I don’t make it a habit. Even so, there’s been a noticeable brightening of my teeth in the month or so I’ve had it. It has a nice mint flavor too. It gets a little gooky, so be careful to screw the top on all the way. But at a cool $6 smackers, I can’t wait to try all the other colors! Who knew my favorite balm would actually be…a lipstick?

Verdict: as long as you’re not afraid of a tiny bit more color than you’d expect in a balm, grab it today!



2 Responses to “My Lip Gloss Be Poppin’”

  1. Must Have Boxes March 13, 2013 at 12:47 pm #

    SUGAR lip gloss is the best. Great pick.

    – KW


  1. There are quite a few at ease with moral ambiguities | Cushion Cut - April 4, 2013

    […] and forgot to publish it. It’s been a while since we talked about something more serious than lip color and food, so I say, what the heck. […]

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