Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Lip Balm Roulette

I think I may have a problem - a lip-balm problem. You see, I love lip-balm, and can't say no when a new/interesting flavor is introduced. Because even though I have Lemon Cheesecake lip balm, the Meyer Lemon Cupcake lip-balm *may* be different. Or better! Which means, naturally, I have to have both. Let me show you a small part of my collection:
What you're seeing: The Morbid The Merrier, Epically Epic Soap Company, OrangeThyme, Madd Style Cosmetix, Ophelia's Apothecary, and, last but not least, Haunt Soap Company. Each company makes lip-balms, a few places specialize in balms, and a few just have balms as an afterthought. So let's break it down, balm-style!
First up is Ophelia's Apothecary. This picture is Lemon Cheesecake, hands down my favorite lip-balm flavor of all time. It doesn't smell like lemons, or lemonade, it smells exactly like lemon cheesecake - creamy, tart, lemony. It's got a lovely slip to it, so your lips feel moisturized, but not overly slick, and it lasts. I have three balms from OA left, the Lemon Cheesecake balm, Butter Toffee Crunch, and Margarita Lime. All three are lovely. Now for the bad: Ophelia's Apothecary is notoriously unreliable. It took well over two months for me to receive my order. At the time of the order, turn-around time was around 14 days. No notice was sent, no explanation was given. However, I really liked my products, so I didn't really think anything of it. I've since learned of several other customers experiencing months-long waits, or orders that never arrived, and now OA is threatening to close up shop. Oy. So, despite their excellent performance, I can't recommend this shop. Let's move on to a shop I can whole-heartedly recommend...
OrangeThyme! This is one of the companies that specialized in lip-balms, and it shows. These balms have avocado oil and shea butter, which seem to lend a thickness to the balm formula. They glide on heavier, and melt into the lips. Each of these balms is scented very true to life. The Honeycrisp Apple balm really does smell like crisp apple slices, for example, and you can smell a true blueberry scent in the Blueberry Lemon balm. These balms are heavy, and not suitable for under lipstick or gloss, however. I tend to wear these to bed to moisturize overnight. But, really, you can't go wrong with any flavor combination from OrangeThyme. Next up...
Madd Style Cosmetix! MSC is a great company, primarily known for their eyeshadows. (Which are fabulous. Get some. GO!) I happen to have two different formulas: mango butter and sugar lips. I notice a bit more slip with the sugar lips formula, while the mango butter formula is slightly thicker. These two smell lovely, but carry an artificial scent. The Carrot Cake Bomb smells more like sugared walnuts than anything else, which is not a bad thing...unless your husband is allergic to walnuts and HATES the smell. The Marshmallow Peep Bomb smells like burnt sugar. Of note: MSC doesn't make a lot of balms, and when they do, they're often limited-edition. So keep your eyes open, and GO BUY EYESHADOW!
Haunt Soap Co. makes quite a few lip-balms, which they call "Lusts." The two flavors I own, Milk & Nectar and Strawberry-Lime are excellent. Milk & Nectar is a strange scent, which really grew on me. It's floral and fruity at the same time, and very different from any other balm scent I've tried (which is a lot). These are the two slipperiest balms I own. They slide onto the lips and sit on the surface, without sinking in, and tend not to last on me. The saving grace is those lovely scents that don't smell like anything from any other company.
Last, but certainly not least, Epically Epic Soap Co. The current line up includes balms with spice, like Cardamom Vanilla or Pineapple Sage (both of which are on their way to me...). Epically Epic is known for unusual and savory balms. In the past, the store has offered Thai Lemongrass balm, as well as Passionfruit Rose. These combinations don't always work, but when they do, they're (dare I say) epic. EESC balms are soft and moisturizing. They coat the lips and sink into the natural folds. These tend to last on me, which is why I wear the shimmer balms at work (12-13 hour shifts). EESC balms are on the heavier side, but light enough to wear lipstick over.

So who do I recommend? I suppose it depends on what you look for in a balm. I tend to buy based on flavor/smell first, and once I like a formula, I'll go back to that company. The lightest balm in this group is the Haunt formula, which is noticeably slick. The heaviest balms are the OrangeThyme balms. Epically Epic balms lie on the heavier side, but are more wearable during the day. OrangeThyme and Epically Epic make the most interesting flavors, while Haunt makes fewer balms with more unusual flavors. I would buy from each company again, but Epically Epic Soap Company has the balms I keep going back for.

**all products purchased by me**


  1. I've been looking for a good indie lip balm.. I was thinking about trying some from Haus of Gloi, but I might check out Epically Epic! Awesome review :) Posts like this are my favourite haha

    1. I think you'll be happy with anything from Epically Epic, but I've heard good things about Haus of Gloi's balms, too. If it's still available, the Mimosa Honey balm from Epically Epic is lovely. And thanks for reading!

  2. Oh dear, this could be dangerous. I just bought my first Blushie lip balm and now I'm going through all my old balms and trying them again. The Blushie one is the only indie I own at present but I may have to try Haunt and MSC one's now.

  3. Haus of Gloi makes my favorite ones. I liked Epically Epic for feel but the scents were so overpowering that I didn't wear them often. OrangeThyme is on my list to try though.