Woman applying lip balm to her lips

Photo by Ron Lach on Pexels

Our lips are a prominent part of our face – we use them to communicate, express feelings through expressions, or show affection through kisses. Even if we focus on skincare products for the face, such as anti-aging balms or sunscreens, we tend to neglect our lips, which need just as much attention! Certain lip products can also claim to moisturize or heal lips but end up causing more dryness in the long run. The best lip balms contain natural moisturizers called emollients, as well as occlusives, which seal in moisture and prevent it from escaping the skin.

A study published in the official medical journal of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons finds that participants who were given pictures of natural versus enhanced lips tended to rate the natural lips as more attractive. So, what are the top products on the market for healthy, smooth lips? StudyFinds did the research to find the top seven best lip balms at every price point based on the consensus among 11 beauty experts. Whether you prefer fruity flavors or unscented natural balms, our list has something for everyone. Let us know which one you want to try in the comments below!

Vaseline aloe lip therapy
Vaseline aloe lip therapy (Photo by Geometric Photography on Unsplash)

The List: Best Lip Balms to Soothe Dry Lips

1. Aquaphor Lip Repair

Aquaphor Lip Repair
Aquaphor Lip Repair

Aquaphor is well known for being a budget-friendly cure-all when it comes to healing dry or cracked skin. It contains petrolatum which is one of the best occlusives you can find in any lip balm, locking in moisture and allowing skin to heal.

Dry, cracked lips? Aquaphor to the rescue! Prevention explains why this ointment is a cult favorite. It’s packed with glycerin to hydrate, shea butter and beeswax to create a protective barrier, and calming chamomile to soothe irritation. Plus, castor seed oil adds an extra layer of moisture. The best part? It’s fragrance-free, dye-free, and preservative-free, making it a great choice for even the most sensitive lips.

The Cut backs this up, calling Aquaphor a classic lip soother. Free of frills, fragrance, and flavor, this simple formula gets the job done for even the worst chapping. The lip repair version comes in a bag or purse friendly tube size that dispenses just the right amount.

Glamour reviewers rave about how Aquaphor keeps their lips smooth, soft, and shiny all winter long. They especially love that it skips the stickiness and strong scents that often come with thick lip treatments. Aquaphor just delivers straight-up hydration, no frills attached. No wonder it’s been a drugstore favorite for years!

2. Vaseline Lip Therapy

Vaseline Lip Therapy
Vaseline Lip Therapy

It’s no surprise that the second recommendation on the list is another classic lip product that also contains petrolatum. You can turn to this option in winter when the harsh weather causes cracked, dry skin to heal lips and skin, and maintain smoothness year-round.

Vaseline isn’t just for boo-boos anymore! A reviewer at The Strategist swears by it for healing chapped lips. They say after a bad reaction to another product, Vaseline was the only thing that soothed their cracked and raw lips. Within just five days, their lips were back to normal, and now they use Vaseline all the time! They love how it layers well under lipstick and other lip products, and how it melts in for long-lasting moisture.

The formula comes in the cutest tiny pot that fits in any purse or bag and also comes in a few different flavors like Cocoa or Crème Brûlée. Cosmopolitan calls Vaseline the “OG cult-favorite lip balm” for a reason. If you’re tired of all the fancy lip balms with confusing ingredients and sky-high prices, this is your answer. Vaseline gets straight to the point and keeps your lips moisturized without breaking the bank.

Who What Wear says that this iconic product has been around for over a hundred years! Sure, it’s made with petrolatum, which some folks avoid, but you can’t argue with its effectiveness. Dermatologists love Vaseline for its ability to create a barrier that seals in moisture, making it a great choice for dry, chapped lips.

3. Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask

Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask
Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask

The Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask isn’t exactly a balm; it’s meant to be used overnight as a mask, so you wake up refreshed with beautifully moisturized lips. But there’s nothing wrong with carrying around this cult favorite to use all the time. Vogue says if you’re only going to try one thing from the Korean beauty brand Laneige, make it their cult-favorite Lip Sleeping Mask. And they specifically like the vanilla flavor. Think of it as a nighttime super treatment for your lips! This balm is packed with fruit extracts and nourishing oils that sink in while you sleep, leaving you with baby-soft lips by morning. It even has vitamin C to help repair damage and boost collagen production, so you can kiss dry, chapped lips goodbye.

Though it comes in a variety of flavors, the most popular is Gummy Bear, which smells and tastes just like your favorite candy without being overwhelmingly sweet. Women’s Health is another huge fan. They say this mask is a must-have for anyone who wants to wake up with a healthy, hydrated pout. Simply slather it on before bed and let it work its magic while you catch some zzz’s.

Byrdie put the Lip Sleeping Mask to the test and gives it high marks across the board. They love the ultra-creamy, moisturizing formula that leaves lips feeling soft and cushiony. Plus, the shiny finish temporarily plumps lips and blurs out fine lines for a picture-perfect pout. No wonder it’s a best-seller!

4. Fresh Sugar Lip Balm Hydrating Treatment

Fresh Sugar Lip Balm Hydrating Treatment
Fresh Sugar Lip Balm Hydrating Treatment in Original (Not tinted)

The Fresh lip balm is a great one-step shop for natural looking lips to add to your routine because it’s a tinted balm that lasts for 24 hours and comes in a variety of shades. Wirecutter loves the velvety soft feel and light, pleasant scent (they tested both Untinted and Rosé shades). Plus, it comes in a range of pretty colors if you want a hint of tint. They even say the chic packaging makes it look more like a date-night essential than your average lip balm!

But the Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment isn’t just about looks. People magazine hails it as their top pick for tinted lip balm thanks to its 14 color options and its ability to deliver a natural-looking wash of color. The formula is packed with nourishing ingredients too, including upcycled cranberry seed oil and rapeseed oil, along with sugar for a hit of long-lasting moisture.

Some might find it a bit pricey for a single tube, but the color is buildable, and the nourishing ingredients are worth the splurge. Dermatologists love it too! Prevention cites Dr. Shari Marchbein, an assistant clinical professor of dermatology at NYU School of Medicine, who gives Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment a thumbs-up for its super nourishing blend of plant oils. We’re talking castor seed, grapeseed, avocado, wheat germ, apricot, jojoba, and more! So you can hydrate, protect, and add a touch of color, all with one swipe. Sounds pretty sweet to us!

5. Summer Fridays Lip Butter Balm

Summer Fridays Lip Butter Balm
Summer Fridays Lip Butter Balm

This lip balm is packed with vegan waxes and seed butters and is just as hydrating as non-vegan lip balms. It comes in seven different shades and flavors. If you’re on Tik Tok, Byrdie says you have definitely seen this balm from Summer Fridays. It also contains vitamin E to soften and plump lips, all while leaving them glossy and oh-so kissable.

You can use this balm at night like a lip mask to protect and heal or bring it on the go for daily moisture and a hint of color and shine. The Cut describes it as a buttery smooth balm that glides on.

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

Burt’s Bees 100% Natural Moisturizing Lip Balm
Burt’s Bees Pomegranate 100% Natural Moisturizing Lip Balm

Another classic on the list, Burt’s Bees comes in the classic twist up tube that somehow seems to last for ages. You can buy multi-packs for less than the price of a single balm from other brands and throw one in each of your bags for convenience.

Say goodbye to dry lips! Glamour magazine’s commerce writer swears by this colorless lip balm. It provides long-lasting moisture without feeling sticky and smooths out rough patches on your lips, face, and even hands. Plus, a tube seems to last forever, so you won’t need to ration it.

The balm has options to come in tinted or non-tinted versions and comes with a soothing peppermint sensation. People magazine also loves that it’s easy on your wallet. Packed with beeswax and vitamin E, it soothes and protects your lips, all while keeping them hydrated.

7. Glossier Balm Dotcom

Glossier Balm DotCom
Glossier Balm Dotcom

Glossier’s balm is another vegan formula that includes natural emollients and antioxidants like castor jelly, shea butter, and synthetic beeswax.

Calling all ’90s kids! Remember the fun, fruity Lip Smackers of our childhood? Glossier’s Balm Dotcom brings back that nostalgic feeling with yummy scents like mango, coconut, and even birthday cake! Plus, some of the balms are even tinted with a sheer wash of color, all at an affordable price.

Glossy or natural? You choose! Wirecutter finds this product to be super hydrating and smooth on the lips. It comes in a variety of colors and scents, but what really sets it apart is the lack of super shiny gloss. Instead, the tinted versions give your lips a sheer, natural-looking tint. No sunscreen, though, so keep that in mind!


Note: This article was not paid for nor sponsored. StudyFinds is not connected to nor partnered with any of the brands mentioned and receives no compensation for its recommendations. This article may contain affiliate links in which we receive a commission if you make a purchase.

About Elsa Lee

Elsa is a freelance journalist, copywriter, and marketer based out of the Los Angeles area. She has been writing for 7 years.

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  1. Khushboo Kundaliya says:

    Apply glycerin at night

  2. Hanna Fraser says:

    Where can I buy it?

  3. Gloria Reay says:

    Carmex. I’ve tried them all. And I live in Winnipeg.

  4. Tami Bathgate says:

    Fresh, lip balm is the best .

  5. Michelle says:

    I’ve only tried Burt’s Bees from that, but given you made it number one I am not so convinced of the others either. I had lips that were so dry they were cracked and bleeding and applying Burt’s Bees lip balm many times a day did almost nothing. I got Bee Balm lip balm and lip mask online and I use each once per day and my lips have never been better. I wasn’t paid for this, they don’t know I’m writing it, I’m just saying it was a game changer for me after trying everything I could try my hands on in Australia