It’s a battle searching for that perfect lip balm to bring out your pout, because let’s be honest: there are so many lip products out there in the market today. So how can you be sure you’re picking out the best one with great ingredients for your lips?

Keep in mind that there are ingredients that work for you and ingredients that don’t work. Not to mention that it’s often the case that it’s a personal preference depending on the scent, brand, and texture you like. To save you some heartache, here are a few common ingredients you’ll find in your lip care products.

Petrolatum / Petroleum Jelly / Mineral Oil

If you thought of Vaseline, you are correct!

Petroleum jelly is also an occlusive that works as a barrier to prevent the skin’s moisture from evaporating into the air while keeping out bacteria and other outside particles from entering the skin. Petroleum, petroleum jelly, and mineral oil are all derived from crude oil. To give another perspective, crude oil is used for multiple purposes, including gas for running your car.

In many cases, it’s the knowledge of crude oil that causes controversy within the beauty industry. But what’s misunderstood is that these ingredients underwent an ultra-refining and purifying process. This process strips away all the impurities present in natural crude oil and leaves behind a clear substance that’s generally safe for using as cosmetics and applying onto the skin.

However, not everyone can tolerate petroleum jelly or mineral oil. While it’s good for some, it can cause irritation and other unpleasant reactions for others.

Products:

Vaseline Lip Therapy 

Aquaphor Lip Repair

Lanolin

Some people swear by lanolin as their holy grail for bringing out soft lips. So what is it? Lanolin is a natural and animal-derived product harvested from sheep’s wool. When refined, the outcome is another occlusive that prevents water from evaporating the skin and keeps it moisturized and soft-feeling. Sounds great right? 

Unfortunately, there is controversy with lanolin. While it’s generally safe to us, it’s also an ingredient that can be potential allergens and irritate the skin. This is especially the case with people who have sensitive skin, broken, or even chapped skin. If you find that you’re in need of some extra moisture and you’re not sensitive to it, lanolin is great for keeping your lips moisturized.

Products:

Lanolips

Go-To Lips

Honey

If you’re all about that honey life, you’re probably aware that raw honey has a variety of healing properties on the skin. It works to hydrate, even out texture, and plump the skin, while destroying acne-causing bacteria with its antibacterial and antifungal properties. The good news is that this ingredient is safe to use for healing your lips. It’s rich in minerals, vitamins, amino acids and antioxidants, which is great for fighting off free radicals. 

Beeswax

It’s another popular ingredient that’s mostly included to help provide structure and texture to the lip balms. A good indicator is to see if your lip balm feels more waxy and less greasy, which shows that the product has a higher content of beeswax. 

Products

Farmacy Honey Butter Beeswax Lip Balm

Burt’s Bees Beeswax Lip Balm

Shea Butter & Cocoa Butter

These two might be comedogenic when slathering onto the skin, but did you know they work wonderfully for your lips? Shea butter is rich in fatty acids and contains key components terpenic alcohols and phytosterols, which heal wounds and sooth inflamed skin. Additionally, cocoa butter is rich in vitamins, from A1, B1, C, D, E, iron, and magnesium. All of these vitamins are nutrients needed to maintain soft and healthy looking lips. 

Products:

Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Lip Balm

Sacred Shea Skincare Organic Lavender Basil Lip Balm

Natural Oils

We’re mostly talking about base oils such as marula, coconut, olive, jojoba, almond, sunflower, and hemp seed oils. Basically, these are all oils you can put on your face and achieve similar and beneficial results in moisturizing the skin.  These oils contain essential fatty acids which are a rich source of antioxidants, and help to deeply moisturize the skin on our lips while forming a protective barrier. 

Products:

Drunk Elephant Lippe Balm  

Mario Badescu Lip Balm

Zinc Oxide & Titanium Dioxide

They’re also known as ingredients for protecting your skin against the sun! SPF is so important to maintaining your skin’s health, so don’t your lips deserve the same treatment? Finding a lip product that contains SPF is great in protecting not just your skin, but your delicate lips.

Products:

Paula’s Choice Lipscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 50

Elta MD UV Lip Balm Broad Spectrum SPF 31

For more detailed information on lip care, check out the full video:

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