Winter’s cold, dry weather is no match for these products
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When you want smooth and healthy-looking lips, what do you turn to first? Lip balm, of course! If you’re looking for your new favorite to revive your lips this winter, choose from one of these 10 must-have balms, beloved for their moisturizing and healing properties.
Searching for your holy grail lip balm? Reviewed staff writer Sara Hendricks wrote a love letter to this one. Carmex, available in a traditional roll-up chapstick form, a pot, or a squeezy tube, contains menthol, camphor, petrolatum, beeswax—all of which feel refreshing on the lips. You can choose between the original medicated version or cherry, strawberry, and a host of other “flavors.” One Amazon reviewer always has one within reach: “I keep one in my purse, my vanity and makeup bag. I sleep with it every night and wake up to plump hydrated lips. I love this stuff!”
Keep your lips plump and moisturized with an overnight lip mask. The Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask uses hyaluronic acid and minerals to lock in moisture and a mix of vitamin C and antioxidants from berries to soothe and soften. Apply a generous amount before bed and wipe off in the morning for luscious lips. One Sephora reviewer says it all: “Do not take it lightly when I say this will be the best chapstick you ever use. Nasty winter lips? This will erase that in two nights. Cracked lips? Three nights. Bad breakup leaving you crying with puffy under-eyes and even puffier lips? One night. This stuff is magic and if this cost even $40, I would STILL buy it.”
If a lip serum is a new concept to you, read on. This Conditioning Lip Serum from Blistex claims to deeply moisturize lips with oils and vitamin E. Plop one drop onto your lips and massage in for peak hydration. “This Blistex Conditioning Lip Serum is my holy-grail lip product,” one Target reviewer writes. “It comes with a convenient pump and the serum is similar to a lotion. It feels amazing on my lips, not greasy at all. It absorbs quickly and leaves my lips soft and supple for several hours.”
Everyone knows Aquaphor is the ultimate skin healer. You can use any jar or tube of regular Aquaphor to nourish your lips, but if you want a smaller-sized version for your purse or vanity, get the Lip Repair Ointment. It claims to soothe dry, cracked lips and seal in moisture using shea butter, chamomile essence, and vitamins C, E, and B5. One Amazon reviewer gives Aquaphor as a gift: “It’s the only thing I’ve found that always fixes my dry, cracked lips. The best part is that if I actually remember to use it regularly, my lips don’t get dry or cracked. I keep tubes of this at my bedside, next to where I watch TV, in my purse, and at work. And because it’s such a great price, I often carry around a brand-new tube to give away if I see a friend or family member whose lips are super dry.”
Another top-notch mask that makes waves at Sephora is the Bite Beauty Agave Lip Mask, which uses agave nectar and jojoba oil to hydrate and improve the texture of lips. The mask also uses resveratrol, a plant compound made from grapes and berries that acts as an antioxidant, to protect from free radicals. Choose from natural (clear), lavender (pale pink), maple (sheer bronze), champagne (rose gold), and smashed (sheer candy apple red). “This is hands-down the best lip mask I've ever used,” one Sephora reviewer writes. “My lips have always been on the dry side, and the winter has made them even more dry than usual. And I've never been keen on wearing lipstick because it just looked flaky and awkward due to the dryness. This lip mask has changed everything. It's rich, thick and hydrating, and it lasts for hours.”
For a no-fuss balm you can glide on the lips anytime, the Eos Smooth Stick Lip Balm is perfect. It uses shea butter and jojoba oil to hydrate the lips and vitamin E to protect from free radicals. Choose from vanilla bean, sweet mint, and strawberry sorbet for flavors, er, scents. One ULTA reviewer can’t get enough of it: “This lip balm is everything! I have all three flavors and they're all great. However, the mint is my favorite. So smooth and moisturizing! They smell and taste great, too! I have to buy backups because I don't ever want to be without it!”
If you love a tinted balm, look no further than the Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment, which comes in one untinted satin shade, 12 tinted satin shades, and two shimmer shades. Whether you go for a berry tone or a bright pink, the balm uses sugar as a humectant (a substance that draws moisture in), meadowfoam and black currant seed oils as moisturizers, and grapeseed oil as a softening ingredient that also protects against free radicals. “I tend to get really dry lips during the colder months and I do not have a habit of wearing lip balm, so I resort to using products only when my lips are chapped,” one Sephora reviewer writes. “Usually it takes several days of intensive application to begin the process of curing my lips; but after just one day of applying the Sugar Lip Treatment, all the dryness disappeared and my lips were so soft! I cannot begin to explain how much I love this product!”
If you’re in the market for a skin salve, or a multipurpose balm that hydrates the lips and skin, give the Rosebud Salve a go. The thinner-feeling formula leaves a satin finish and smells like roses. It helps calm and heal irritation and soothe the sting of minor sunburns using pure white petrolatum, cotton seed oil, a blend of essential oils, and botanicals (a common cosmetic additive made from plants). One Sephora reviewer can’t let go of this balm now that they’ve tried it: “I love this balm! I had heard about it for many years, and it is near impossible to find where I live (New Zealand) so I stocked up on a recent trip to the US. I now cannot live without it—I slather it on my lips every night and I swear they have not been as dry as they used to be!”
When you want to heal cracked lips, this balm from Jack Black is a great remedy. It uses grapefruit and ginger to refresh and soothe; shea butter and avocado oil to soften and condition the lips; and vitamin E, green tea extract, and antioxidants to ward off free radicals. Bonus: It has SPF in it to protect your lips from the sun. If you like a hint of mint under your nose, go with the original scent, or go fruity with grapefruit and ginger, black tea and raspberry, lemon and shea butter, or flavor-free with shea butter and vitamin E. This is a must-have during winter for one Sephora reviewer: “With the weather turning colder, we are cranking up the heat at my house and that is terrible on my lips. My lips became so chapped and were on the verge of cracking when I started using this lip balm, [and] after only two, yes two, applications I noticed an immediate difference!”
As you can tell by now, multipurpose balms are the thing. This one from Lano can be mixed into moisturizer, applied to the cuticles, or even used as an eyebrow gel. But if you’re exclusively looking for a new lip balm, it’s perfect for that, too! It uses lanolin and lanolin oil to hydrate dry lips and lock in moisture. Apply generously to use as an overnight mask, or apply as needed throughout the day. One hooked ULTA reviewer writes: “I have been a lip balm addict for years and this stuff is the absolute best! I apply it probably three times a day, which is so much better than the hundred times I had been doing with other product.”
Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.
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