A couple weeks ago I polled my Instagram friends for lip products that contained SPF. The only other qualification was that they couldn’t taste like it. Certain SPF chaptsticks have the ability to infiltrate your mouth, and settle in the back of your throat for hours. IFYKYK. If you know, you know.
So, I took the top 10 most suggested products and clicked “add to cart.” Ordered them all, and took the next week or so trying them out. No more than two per day, not wanting to taint my results. Very serious business. My lips have been freckling and it’s starting to look like brown lip liner, so yeah, it’s serious.
So without further ado — the results. Most expensive first, on down to least costly.
- Coming in at a whopping $18.00 — COOLA Mineral Liplux Organic Tinted Lip Balm Sunscreen. Tinted (I had shade “Coral Reef”) and the consistency of lipstick with twist up packaging to boot. Mine came broken. Literally detached from its base so that’s a bummer and apparent to me that it’s too delicate for my life. But I tried it anyway and it had a nice peachy nude color, needed quite a bit for a decent color payoff (and otherwise felt very drying if not.) TLDR: TINTED, MINTY, NO AFTERTASTE, PRETTY. WHO’S IT FOR: The type of girl doesn’t spill on herself, or have rowdy rummaging kids and loves a one and done product.
- ELTA MD UV Lip Balm $11.50 — The skin professionals that follow me all said the same thing, Elta MD. This is one of two Zinc formulas that made this list and Zinc is a cleaner option, doesn’t trap heat to your skin and won’t further age it. This does leave a white cast, but is water resistant for 80 minutes (one of two products to even tout water resistance on their packaging.) I scrubbed my lip with water and a finger and it didn’t budge. The white cast never absorbed so I’ll take that as the signal that the product is still working. Layer a color on top to hide it maybe? TLDR: WHITE CAST, FLAVORLESS, DOESN’T BUDGE. WHO’S IT FOR: Beach, pool, lake lovers, snow sportspeople who spend any amount of time in the water/wind/cold/heat.
- SUPERGOOP Mint Lip Balm. $10.00 — Sad to say because I love all their other products, has an unpleasant aftertaste. Aquaphor like consistency and a lot of product for the price, but I’m returning it.
- PAULA’S CHOICE LipScreen SPF 50, $10.00 — You have to buy this directly from their site (enter your email for free shipping, otherwise you got shipping costs, too) and it is TINY. 0.15 ounces. Yes. Compared to Supergoop for the same price at 0.5 ounces. Otherwise, no complaints. CLEAN, TASTELESS, FLAVORLESS, SILKY, MOISTURIZING.
- DUKE CANNON Cannon Balm $8.50 — This has to be marketed for dudes because it is as a big as a face sunscreen stick (0.56 ounces), and the packaging is *shudders* black and orange with a firefighter motif. Clean as a whistle with every ingredient something you’d find in your cupboard (if you’re a DoTerra Rep.) It’s a balm and has a tingly sensation, I’d guess from the Tea Tree Oil, that could potentially burn if your lips are compromised. Says it works in up to 140 degrees. TLDR: BEST VALUE, MINTY, TINGLY, CLEAN. WHO’S IT FOR: An employee of the Subsaharan Fire Department? JK, I’m keeping this in our boat because for the cost, I am happy to share and it will probably last all Summer.
- JACK BLACK Intense Lip Therapy $8.00 — Spoiler alert this one wins. It ticks all the boxes for me and is my overall winner. I’ll happily wear this everyday in most every situation. TLDR: MINTY, TASTES GREAT, BEST TEXTURE, CUTE. WHO’S IT FOR: Everyone.
- NEUTROGENA Moisture Shine Lip Soother with Cooling Hydragel $5.99 — A solid contender, but limited in its situational use. Its got a pretty pink tint and a great glossy texture. Because of said gloss, I wouldn’t wear it to the lake or anywhere wind is at play, so it’s more of a girl on the town, brunch al fresco, day at the outdoor mall option. Also if you hate shimmer as I do, I can only vouch for “Shine 30” others I saw had glitter in them. TLDR: GLOSS, TINT, MELON-Y. WHO’S IT FOR: The indoor type.
- SUNBUM Mineral Sunscreen Lip Balm $3.99 — I was shocked to see this product as the far and away #1 most suggested. Because I tried it a few years ago and remembered it tasting like S-P-F slash A-S-S, you can’t fool me overpowering coconut flavoring. So I gaslit myself into believing I must’ve remembered wrong. I did not. The Zinc option is really the only way to go from the SunBum line (does white cast, but doesn’t stay SO long like the Elta MD) unless you want to taste SPF for all of your days. TLDR: ZINC, WHITE CAST, ODD FLAVOR, MINOR AFTERTASTE, GREAT TEXTURE, GREAT VALUE, EASY TO ACCESS. WHO’S IT FOR: Everyone, a good option to keep in the car and you won’t be so mad if you lose it.
- BLISTEX 5 Star Lip Protection $2.99 — Honestly for the price point, can’t fault it. It did have a slight aftertaste, but slight. A nice creamy vanilla flavor and a wonderful consistency that felt amazing on my lips also touts water resistance for 80 minutes. TLDR: BUDGET OPTION, VANILLA, SLIGHT AFTERTASTE, NOT CLEAN. WHO’S IT FOR: No access to the internet or forethought, but you are in a gas station and it’s there.
- AQUAPHOR Lip Repair + Protect $2.99 — You want it to work because Aquaphor consistency is so ideal for lips, but I am sorry, gross. Unshakable aftertaste that coats your mouth. TLDR: Just say no. WHO’S IT FOR: A lifelong cigar smoker with a titch of the Long Haulers and lingering Parosmia.
SUMMARY: Stock up on Jack Black for daily use. Grab an Elta MD for you for day trips to the beach or lake. SunBum with Zinc for the kids for water days. Toss a Neutrogena in your purse for actual days you’re in actual clothes and a Duke Cannon for the guy in your life.