Never leave the house without one
If there’s one beauty product we always reach for in winter it’s the best lip balm. The harsh weather can wreak havoc on our skin, and as soon as the temperature drops our lips are at best a bit tight and uncomfortable, at worst cracked and sore.
As well not feeling great, lipstick doesn’t look particularly great on dry and flaky lips – and only the best lip balm will fix it and protect against the elements in future. So whether you’re after a shiny finish, a hint of colour or deep moisturisation, we’ve picked out the cream of the crop of lip balms for you to choose from.
Read on for our guide to the best lip balms money can buy, from drugstore to designer, and upgrade that past-its-sell-by-date tin of Vaseline. And when you're done here, shop these lip balms for dry lips on our Fabled store. Because chapped lips ain’t the one, folks.
Best lip balm for dry lips
Much to the delight of British beauty junkies everywhere, Drunk Elephant launched in the UK this year in Space NK and Cult Beauty. The lip balm glides on easily and is a shiny formula that's packed with moisturising mongongo, marula and avocado oils. Bravo, Drunk Elephant.
Best lip balm for chapped lips
For me, this is the dream lip balm. It's not sticky, is thick and nourishing and you can barely see that you're wearing anything, but most importantly it does its job of leaving your lips soft and moisturised once it has soaked in. If you need a nice lip balm but don't want a big old shiny, glossy lip then this is the way to go.
Best lip balm with tint
Elizabeth Arden's Eight Hour Cream – and its signature scent – is without a doubt one of the most famous beauty products on the planet. That formula has extended into a whole line of products including a hand cream, a face mist and these lip balms. They're quite shiny in terms of finish and the tint is just the right hint of colour (although there is an untinted version if you're so inclined). Pop one in your coat pocket to top up throughout the day.
Best lip balm with SPF
Famous for the 101 Ointment, Lanolips also happen to make really good lip balms. Available in four different shades (Rose, Rhubarb, Perfect Nude and Red Apple) these tinted balms also have the added bonus of SPF 30, which is essential if you're heading to sunnier climes.
Best drugstore lip balm
You'd recognise the bright yellow pot a mile off. Carmex is one of the most famous lip balms out there, with a distinct medicinal feel. It's loaded with Vitamin E, beeswax and a number of oils and it's pretty affordable too. As well as the classic, there are a number of different flavours to choose from, including cherry, peach and mango and even sugar plum.
Best natural lip balm
Everybody has seen these round lip balms about, but what you might not be aware of is that all of eos's fun-flavoured balms are 100% natural. Not bad, hey? Fun fact: Eos actually stands for 'evolution of smooth', which is exactly what you'll experience when you try one of their lip balms.
Best lip scrub
Somebody once described lip scrub to me as being 'powerful stuff', and I couldn't agree more. This one by KIKO is seriously great; the handy stick formula makes it super easy to apply, like you would a stick of lip balm, then wipe off the residue with tissue. Follow up with lip balm for the softest pout of your life.
Still not convinced you've found the best lip balm in the world? Keep scrolling for more recommendations from team Marie Claire and shop five of the best for dry lips on our Fabled store.
This cult Japanese beauty brand is well known for its skincare and this lip cream is a definite highlight.
When it comes to lip balm, few products are as iconic as a yellow tube of Burt's Bees. They come in a range of different flavours, including original Beeswax, but Coconut and Pear is a personal favourite at MC.
As well as the sticks, your favourite heal-all beauty balm also comes in an intense repair version, all packed in a pocket-sized pot.
This beautifully packaged lip balm packs a seriously powerful moisture punch. Containing a high concentration of the brand's miracle broth, it banishes dryness in one application and leaves lips looking and feeling softer. A little goes a long way so it's worth the high price point, and has a subtle, sweet mint flavour. Delicious.
Perfecting by name, perfecting by reputation. This pinky unction glides onto lips and blurs out any imperfections, like dry bits.
This is a clever lip balm. It's got a special anti-inflammatory lip complex with liquorice root, which weakened the cause of cold sores. So if you suffer from those blighters, then what are you waiting for? And it has an SPF30. Double whammy.
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Lucy is a freelance beauty editor and contributor at Marie Claire, and has written for titles including Glamour, Refinery29, Popsugar, woman&home and more. She was previously Marie Claire’s junior beauty editor. During her career, she’s covered everything from backstage beauty at fashion week to interviews with famous faces like Drag Race royalty and Little Mix. As for her beauty ethos, she’s a big advocate for not having to spend a fortune on beauty products to get good results, and when she’s not got beauty on the brain you’ll find her reading or hanging out with dogs.
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