I am continually on the hunt for the perfect lip balm. I am fairly lucky, in that my lips have good color so when they are bare, they are not invisible. In the 80s, when light pink frosty lips were de riguer, I used to put foundation on my lips to tone down the colour before applying my mauve-y grey frosted lipstick- Annabelle I think? Can’t recall the colour but I’m pretty sure it matched my nailpolish. Yikes. My mother always said my lips were such a pretty color and could never understand why I would cover them up. As usual, mother was right and now I am happy for their high colour.
Back to balm. I’ve used it all. From $9 Aquaphor– which, is fantastic, although has zero pretty purse appeal in it’s institutional white plastic tube- to $45 La Mer lip balm. La Mer is slightly better packaging wise, but I have never been keen on pot lip balm and having to dip my finger in to apply. Not hygienic and not easy peasy to apply. And it was thin, barely noticeable on my lips at all. La Mer saw me coming a mile away with that one. I’ve owned all the flavours of  the cult favourite Smith’s Rosebud Salve. Seriously? It’s basically Vaseline with a few drops of rosewater & a loud synthetic rose scent. Awful stuff and lasts seconds on the lips before it disappears. Clinique Repairwear balm was OK but I went through it so quickly and again, it just did not last on my lips. And by last I mean that my lips will still feel moist. For example, when I apply Aquaphor at night, I can still feel it on my lips in the morning. A lifesaver on those cold winter nights when the drying heat is on full blast. But I won’t dwell on the products that did NOT live up to my exacting expetations.
My friend Tara and I were chatting about lip balms last month, as I was ready to go out and try yet another $45 one (Dior I think…) and she said she swears by a Clarins one with rosewax. Doesn’t rosewax sound like a lovely thing to put on your lips? I thought so. The next time I passed a Clarins counter I got it. Bingo! It is fantastic. It’s in a tube with a slanted top making it easy to apply and hygienic. It has a barely there subtle and soft rose scent and if there is a taste, I haven’t noticed it. The consistency is thick without being gloppy. It is smooth and glides beautifully across the lips. It slowly sinks in and becomes barely noticeable. There is not a lot of shine, and no frost or reflecting agents, yet it really compliments the lip nicely and makes them feel plump and moist. The most amazing thing for me is how long it lasts. I haven’t timed it but I only have to apply a few times a day. I even notice a slight reduction in the minor (very minor!) vertical lines above the lip while I wear the Clarins balm.
The Clarins balm contains hyaluronic acid, which is a natural skin component capable of retaining  moisture and helps to give a plump moist look to skin and lips. Rose wax, for which it is named, is a product collected from the surface of rose petals, and which forms a silky, soothing protective and moisturizing barrier on the lips. Wow!
I have been using this in lieu of my perrenial faves, Lip Fusion & Smashbox O-Plump, as I am lately craving a less shiny lip. A few drops of the fantastic Benetint rubbed into my lips and the Clarins Balm on top is a perfect every-day lip.
It’s not an inexpensive product at $28 but from what I can see so far, a little goes a long way.
Available at Clarins counters, online at their site, and from Sephora.
Disclaimer:  this review is for a product I purchased
Benetint, Clarins, Clinique, hyaluronic acid, La Mer, lip balm, LipFusion, rose wax, Smashbox, Smith's Rosebud Salve