I know several lovely ladies who consider themselves lipstick queens. I am envious of their affinity for rich hues and awed by their ability to apply bold colors without a mirror. Sometimes I feel adventurous and try my hand at wearing lipstick...but I save those times for specific occasions and they are few and far between. You see, I'm not a lipstick queen, but a "lip stuff" queen. I might not be a hoarder of lipsticks but I consider myself pretty well versed with balms, treatments, tints and other lippy stuffs that moisturize more than the average chapstick. My collection for these types of products is vast - I even had to forbid myself from buying anything from the category for a few months because I realized I wasn't using the products I had till they were gone. But I can't help myself. And today I'm sharing some of my current tippy top favorites.
Gentle scrub…to get things super soft.
- Sara Happ Lip Scrub in “Peony” ($24): any lipstick queen knows the importance of a good lip scrub – an essential step to keeping lips smooth, free of flakes, and prepped for color. But non-lipstick peeps (like me!) still need a little exfoliation action. I love this sugar-based scrub by Sara Happ because unlike some others I have tried, the sugar granules are large enough to actually buff of the top layer of dry, dead skin cells (so many lip scrubs claim to do this but aren’t coarse enough) but the formula won’t damage your lips. There are several “flavor” options but each is packed with essential oils so as you’re massaging the scrub onto your lips you’re also infusing them with tons of hydration. I try to use the scrub at least once a week to maintain super softness.
Super hydration…because lips crave intense moisture.
- AMOREPACIFIC Moisture Bound Lip Treatment ($35): while this might have an unusually high price tag (it’s a clear lip balm, after all) once you use it you understand why. The formula goes on like a gloss – it’s super smooth and more gel-like – and has a high-shine to it but it’s not sticky or tacky. It feels so light you might worry that the hydration factor will fade but it truly doesn’t…your lips stay moisturized for hours. This is probably due to the “superior antioxidant protection” factor of the ingredients. I usually stick to using this at night because it locks in hydration so well.
- rms beauty Lip & Skin Balm in “Simply Vanilla” ($25): I really love this balm because I can use it under my eyes as well as on my lips. I’m also obsessed with the light vanilla scent…it’s pretty intoxicating. If you’re an all-natural junkie then I highly recommend this. Not just because the ingredients are awesome but because it really, really sinks into the skin – no “sitting on the surface and looking pretty” with this stuff. The formula has a night weight to it and you can really slather it on when you want to. (P.S. it comes in a “Simply Cocoa” version)
Shiny balms…when you want hydration with a little something extra.
- RODIN Oilo Lusso Lip Balm ($34): this is one of my favorite lip stuffs because it feels so fancy and luxe. Rodin Olio Lusso is a renowned luxury face oil and this balm contains the jasmine and neroli scent of the oil into a lip treatment. I’ll let you know that this balm is very, very light. It’s not very build-able but I’m obsessed that just a little swipe of it gives moisture and a high-gloss look. I usually put this on as the finishing touch at the end of my makeup routine. (P.S. it comes in this super adorable ring. Great conversation starter)
- Bobbi Brown Lip Balm ($22): I’m a Bobbi Brown junkie and there are many BB products I can’t live without…but this balm just might rank as number one. I love the creamy consistency, the simple but chic silver tin, the non-greasy but extremely hydrating formula. I especially love that the balm can be worn under or on top of a lipstick or gloss. Usually you have to be careful about this kind of layering with a balm but this one emulsifies and plays really well with lipsticks and glosses. (Has anyone tried Bobbi’s Extra Soothing Balm? It almost sounds like it’s the Lip Balm on steroids. Might have to sneak some into my stocking)
- Sara Happ “The Lip Slip” Lip Balm ($24): unlike the two shiny balms above, this one does more than just add some gloss and hydration, it also has a nice little nude hue to it. My lips have a lot of natural redness to them so I love that this balm tones that down but it doesn’t wear as a “color.” It’s very thick and gives lots of shine but there’s not a stickiness like you might expect because it really is a balm and not a gloss. And don’t worry, it might look like there’s a slight sparkle factor when you see it the container but it defiantly doesn’t read as sparkly or shimmery on the lips – just dewy and pretty. (P.S. it also comes in a tube version which I love when I’m caring a small clutch and/or don’t want to get my fingers messy)
A little color…for a natural dose of color.
- Tata Harper Volumizing Lip and Cheek Tint in “Very Charming” ($36): unlike almost all the other lip stuff above, this one has more of a matte look when applied – something I like when I’m choosing to add a hint of color because it seems to look more natural and not like I’ve put on a lipstick. And though there is more of a matte factor, it’s not cakey and goes on sheer and smooth. Another thing that makes it different: it’s got ingredients that help fill in the lines of your lips and add some plumpness. Magic! Science! But wait, it’s all-natural, too! Oh…and you can also swipe it on your cheeks for a natural, light flush. I like the “Very Charming” color because the pink is closest to my natural lip color – it’s what I wear when my hair is dirty and pulled back and I need to feel pretty but not done up. (P.S. the formula comes in five other colors!)
- Fresh Sugar Cream Lip Treatment in “Buff” ($24): I’m sure you guys know all about Fresh and their Sugar Lip Balms/Lip Tints – they are pretty infamous and I do happen to like the original formula (though it wears a little gritty on me and why it’s not in this round-up). Up till recently, the balms and tints were the only lip offerings from Fresh…but they just came out with Cream Lip Treatments and they’re fantastic. They are thicker and creamier than the balms and the hues are more saturated, too. There’s a little shimmer factor, but I find the formula to not be especially glossy (because it’s not a gloss, duh) so this helps reflect light and gift the look of a gloss without the sickness and without sacrificing the nourishing properties of the formula. (Full disclosure, I got my tube in store at Nordstrom and it’s not on their website yet…womp womp)
And there you have it, lots of options from a lip stuff
hoarder queen! You can get them all at Nordstrom…along with a ton of other great beauty stuff perfect for gifting and stuffing into stockings!