Smooth and Beautiful: The Best Lip Balms of 2018 | Smarter Reviews

Smooth and Beautiful: The Best Lip Balms of 2018

Avoiding dry, chapped lips is easy with the right lip balm...and the top-ranked lip balms from Smarter Reviews

Smooth and Beautiful: The Best Lip Balms of 2018

When it comes to lip balm, there is no shortage of options to choose from. You can find flavored and unflavored, clear or tinted, medicated and unmedicated. It can seem like there’s an endless selection, which is why it shouldn’t come as any surprise that all lip balms are not the same. This is also what makes choosing a lip balm so difficult.

If you are searching for the right lip balm, the following tips for what to look for when choosing one will be beneficial. In addition, you’ll find information on how and when to use lip balm, as well as the top benefits it offers. At the end, we’ve compiled a list of five of the top lip balms currently on the market and reviewed them for you. Let’s get started.

The Benefits of Using Lip Balm

It’s impossible to list all the reasons you’ll benefit from using lip balm, so here’s a quick rundown of the top four.  

It acts as a moisturizer

When your lips are dry, they quickly become chapped and begin to peel and crack. Not only can this be painful, but it can also be ugly. Thanks to its moisturizing abilities, lip balm can prevent this from happening, leaving your lips feeling and looking amazing.

It helps your skin heal faster

The skin on your lips is very thin, which makes it slow to heal when it becomes cracked and dry. A thin layer of lip balm seals in moisture and offers protection, speeding up the healing time of your lips.

It helps ensure your lips look beautiful

Using lip balm regularly helps your lips maintain a supple, healthy, and youthful appearance. If you want to add a bit of color, there are options that can do that. If you prefer a natural look, they can add a sheen.

Some types offer protection from the sun

There are plenty of lip balms that include SPF, providing vital protection from harmful UV rays.

How and When to Use Lip Balm

Lip balm is easy to apply. Simply start in the center of your upper lip. From there, work to the outer edges of your lip, being sure to follow your mouth’s contours. Then, sweep it across your entire bottom lip.

When to apply lip balm is largely your decision. You may want to use it every day or only when you are dealing with chapped lips. Regardless, it is a good idea to apply lip balm every night before you go to sleep to keep them adequately moisturized and to prevent chapping.

What to avoid in a lip balm

To help you narrow down your possibilities, you will want to do the following:  

Avoid lip balms made with potentially toxic ingredients

Be sure to select a lip balm that is free of parabens, phthalates, chemical fragrances or flavors, and chemical dyes (often identified with a # next to them).

Stay away alum, camphor, or menthol

While these ingredients produce a nice tingle, they tend to dry your lips out in the long run. Salicyclic acid, which exfoliates your lips, also does this.

What you should try to get

  1. Opt for a lip balm made with natural products. This includes beeswax, shea butter, cocoa butter, and nut oils.
  2. It’s a good idea to consider one that includes sunscreen. However, there are certain types of sunscreens that you will want to avoid.
  3. Decide between clear and tinted. Many lightly-tinted lip balms are available if you want to add a bit of color to your lips.

OUR SPECIALIZED RANKING SYSTEM

Now, that you have a better understand of lips balms and how you can benefit from their use, it’s time to look at some of the most popular models on the market. At Smarter Reviews, we employ a comprehensive evaluation system to analyze and measure the full value of products. This is based on component quality, safety, potential effectiveness, return policies, and overall customer satisfaction. We call our method the Smarter Reviews Ranking System.

TOP 5 Lip Balms

Now, it's time to look at five of the top lip balms.

1. Maybelline Baby Lips Moisturizing Lip Balm

Total Ranking

647 votes

9.7/10

A+

Overall Grade

  • Product Safety
    8.4 Avg.

    9.7/10

  • Projected Effectiveness
    8.1 Avg.

    9.9/10

  • Value
    8.2 Avg.

    9.5/10

  • Return Policy
    8.8 Avg.

    9.4/10

  • Customer Satisfaction
    8.0 Avg.

    9.8/10

    Vote and Review

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5/10

PROS

  • With a price that’s around $3 per tube, it works with any budget
  • It is available in six, very diverse shades
  • Moisturizes lips for a full eight hours

CONS

  • Some users are bothered by the artificial smell
  • May have to reapply several times a day, particularly after eating and drinking
The Bottom Line

Currently the number one cosmetics company in America, Maybelline has been creating high-quality makeup and skincare products, like the Maybelline Baby Lips Lip Balm, since 1915. Their products not only keep up with the latest trends but are also affordable.  

The overwhelming majority of reviewers are extremely satisfied with the results. Comments often include “application is buttery smooth and gives a barely-there tint,” “very soft and silky, emphasizes healthily moisturized lips,” and “goes on smooth, feels great, and doesn’t settle into lip crevices.” The only complaints customers occasionally mentioned involved the “kind of artificial smell” and “comes off easy when you eat or drink.”

Maybelline Baby Lips contains petrolatum, considered the best occlusive moisturizing ingredient available, which is important to prevent or slow down water loss. (1) 

When you consider the low price and the fact that multiple reviewers point out that “this is the product I always come back to,” it’s easy to see that it is almost impossible to go wrong with this lip balm.

Thanks to its enormous number of positive customer reviews, low cost, and use of safe ingredients, Maybelline Baby Lips Moisturizing Lip Balm tops our list. As an added bonus, there are several shades available, making it perfect for anyone who prefers a natural look, as well as anyone who wants to add a hint of color to their lips.*

*Results are based on the Smarter Reviews Ranking System and do not necessarily reflect typical results from the use of these products. Please visit product websites for more information.

Learn About Our Top Pick

2. Burt’s Bees 100% Natural Moisturizing Lip Balm

Total Ranking

310 votes

9.5/10

A+

Overall Grade

  • Product Safety
    8.4 Avg.

    9.5/10

  • Projected Effectiveness
    8.1 Avg.

    9.6/10

  • Value
    8.2 Avg.

    9.3/10

  • Return Policy
    8.8 Avg.

    9.4/10

  • Customer Satisfaction
    8.0 Avg.

    9.6/10

    Vote and Review

Vote and Review

5/10

PROS

  • 100% all-natural
  • Stays on well, often lasting for hours
  • Thicker, smoother consistency than other natural lip balms

CONS

  • Doesn’t include any SPF, so there’s no sun protection
  • More expensive
  • Doesn’t provide any color
The Bottom Line

Currently the top-selling lip balm on Amazon, Burt’s Bees 100% Natural Moisturizing Lip Balm adheres to the brand’s philosophy that anything you use on your body should be made from the best nature has to offer. As is the case with all Burt’s Bees products, this lip balm is free of parabens, phthalates, and more.

“This is the only lip balm I’ll buy,” say reviewers, because “it totally hydrates my lips and keeps them from getting painfully chapped.” Customers comment on how “long-lasting and soothing” it is. For the handful of people not happy with the product, the primary complaint involved the “overwhelming peppermint.” *

*Results are based on the Smarter Reviews Ranking System and do not necessarily reflect typical results from the use of these products. Please visit product websites for more information.

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3. Vaseline Lip Therapy Lip Balm Mini

Total Ranking

328 votes

9.2/10

a-

Overall Grade

  • Product Safety
    8.4 Avg.

    9.3/10

  • Projected Effectiveness
    8.1 Avg.

    9.1/10

  • Value
    8.2 Avg.

    9.3/10

  • Return Policy
    8.8 Avg.

    9.2/10

  • Customer Satisfaction
    8.0 Avg.

    9.2/10

    Vote and Review

Vote and Review

5/10

PROS

  • Tiny container easily fits in your pocket
  • Inexpensive
  • Many users compliment its scent

CONS

  • Has to be applied with your fingertips
  • Contains yellow 5 lake
The Bottom Line

For over 135 years, Vaseline products, including lotions and petroleum jelly, have been a mainstay in medicine cabinets all over the U.S.

Most reviewers report that Vaseline Lip Therapy Lip Balm leaves their lips feeling nourished and soft, without any of the burn that can be experienced with other lip balms. Other reviewers report that it is “horribly sticky” and “really thick with a nasty taste.”

Unfortunately, there is also a potential safety concern with this lip balm. Yellow 5 lake, which has been banned in several European countries, can trigger allergic reactions and has been linked to blurred vision, fatigue, and migraines. (2) It is not banned in the U.S.

While Vaseline is a respected and well-established brand, the addition of a potentially harmful chemical may not be worth spending money on this product. That said, the potential for trouble is very low and there are many positive reviews.*

*Results are based on the Smarter Reviews Ranking System and do not necessarily reflect typical results from the use of these products. Please visit product websites for more information.

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4. NIVEA Smoothness Lip Care SPF 15

Total Ranking

581 votes

8.8/10

b+

Overall Grade

  • Product Safety
    8.4 Avg.

    8.9/10

  • Projected Effectiveness
    8.1 Avg.

    9/10

  • Value
    8.2 Avg.

    8.7/10

  • Return Policy
    8.8 Avg.

    8.8/10

  • Customer Satisfaction
    8.0 Avg.

    8.7/10

    Vote and Review

Vote and Review

5/10

PROS

  • Includes sunscreen that offers protection against harmful UV rays
  • Affordable

CONS

  • Contains multiple ingredients that have the potential to be harmful
  • According to users, it’s simply not up to par, at least in terms of application and how it smells/tastes
The Bottom Line

Nivea is well-known as a leader in the skincare field. To provide protection against the harmful effects of the sun, while also moisturizing your lips, Nivea Smoothness Lip Care includes sunscreen.

While some customers rave about it, at least two reviewers (who report they are longtime users) point out that the company changed the formula in 2017 and the results are far from perfect. Apparently, “it is no longer smooth flowing and a perfume has been added, leaving a taste in my mouth that I can’t get rid of.” A second reviewer referred to it as “a chemical scent.” It’s worth noting that the majority of customers reviews left since late 2017 are below average.

One reason may be the addition of octinoxate. There is evidence that octinoxate can disrupt the endocrine system or cause an allergenic reaction. (3)*

*Results are based on the Smarter Reviews Ranking System and do not necessarily reflect typical results from the use of these products. Please visit product websites for more information.

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5. Blistex DCT Daily Conditioning Treatment SPF 15

Total Ranking

576 votes

8.4/10

b-

Overall Grade

  • Product Safety
    8.4 Avg.

    8.2/10

  • Projected Effectiveness
    8.1 Avg.

    8.3/10

  • Value
    8.2 Avg.

    8.5/10

  • Return Policy
    8.8 Avg.

    8.5/10

  • Customer Satisfaction
    8.0 Avg.

    8.6/10

    Vote and Review

Vote and Review

5/10

PROS

  • Most customers have nothing but good things to say about it
  • Offers protection from the sun
  • Gives your lips a slight sheen, which is perfect if you prefer a natural look

CONS

  • Contains octinoxate
  • Adds no color to your lips
  • Can be hard to find in stores
The Bottom Line

Blistex is another company that has been introducing lip and health care products, like the DCT Daily Conditioning Treatment lip balm, all over the world for many years. Headquartered in Oak Brook, IL, the founding family’s third generation is currently running the Blistex company.

As previously discussed, octinoxate, which is also present here, has the potential to cause an allergenic reaction or disrupt the endocrine system. On the bright side, oxybenzone is one of very few FDA-approved ingredients that provide effective broad spectrum protection from UV rays. (4)

Almost all of the customer reviews gush about Blistex DCT, referring to it as an “excellent product that got rid of my dry lips.” Others compliment its “smoothness” and the “clear, hydrated look it gives.” On the flip side, there were customers who reported they disliked “constantly having to reapply it, like every 15 minutes,” as well as the fact it is very hard to find in stores.*

*Results are based on the Smarter Reviews Ranking System and do not necessarily reflect typical results from the use of these products. Please visit product websites for more information.

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Citations

  1. https://www.maybelline.com/about-maybelline

  2. https://www.livestrong.com/article/370945-health-effects-of-yellow-5-food-coloring/
  3. http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/product/684738/Nivea_Lip_Care_A_Kiss_of_Smoothness_Hydrating_Lip_Care
  4. https://www.cnn.com/2012/05/16/health/sunscreen-report/index.html

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