Monday, May 12, 2008

Pick Your Lipbalm


I can't live without lipbalm - I think I'm not alone... Right now I'm using a zesty Sugar balm by Fresh; this is a Boston brand and it reminds of my days in Cambridge, when I'd cross the Charles River to wander happily on Newbury Street, where Fresh has its lovely, original store.
Vaseline and Rosebud Salve are classics - don't you love their super retro designs? I've recently finished my Rosebud Salve and recycled the empty vessel: it now holds my favorite rings.


But I must confess Rosebud Salve and Vaseline are not my favorites. Indeed, like many other brands, this concoction is petroleum based; that's right, the same gooey and environment-busting oil used to make gasoline goes straight onto your skin and lips via cosmetics...
Here's my cosmetics ingredient black list:

Petroleum/Paraffin/Mineral Oil/Parrafinium Liquidum

Anything that ends in -paraben, usually towards the end of the list (parabens are known to alter hormonal functions)

Propylene Glycol (used to make anti-freeze, low oral toxicity - can poison children)

Lanolin (useless animal suffering)


If you know of any others ingredients that are best avoided, or if you'd like to recommend some products, please do mention them in the Comments section!

25 comments:

artycho said...

I do love the design! Thank you for your black list on cosmetics I will keep an eye open!

Anonymous said...

thank you for the useful list.

miss cavendish said...

I can't live without lip balm either. My favorite is Burt's Bees, which I hope has all natural ingredients!

And I too was disappointed with the Rosebud salve; I loved the pretty packaging but the texture was unappealing. And now your post has definitely confirmed why I don't like it.

red thread said...

my favorite is aveeno essential moisture lip conditioner with spf 15, because i'm a sunblock fanatic. i love the way fresh's sugar lip balm smells, though.

Kitt said...

Parabens are in so many things: makeup, shampoo, sunscreen, even liquid Maalox (an antacid). It's a preservative.

And, as it turns out, I'm allergic to it. I found this out 30 years ago, and it has always been a challenge to find products that don't contain it. Happily now there are many more preservative-free products like the ones you've mentioned. I usually shop for makeup at places like Whole Foods and Wild Oats. Dr. Hauschka is a good brand for preservative-free.

I also buy my soap and shampoo bars from a local soapmaker (Soap Crone). I love her lavender-mint shampoo bar. (And it's great for traveling, not being in liquid form.)

marie said...

i hate what horrible ingredients are hidden in innocent looking things..i wish companies were more honest..especially products claiming to be organic when they're not!

Kitt said...

Oops, it's lavender MIST shampoo, not lavender mint. Great stuff.

Arlene said...

I remember using the Rose Bud Salve many years ago, and then re-discovering it about five years ago. I was quite disapointed because my lips seemed drier than they had before. I have been using a homemade concoction of shea butter and grape seed oil, which I buy in bulk. Lip balm is my number one beauty item.

pierre said...

RoseBud reminds me of ...Citizen Kane...and Kane makes me think of the.... Cannes Film Festival!
Marie Laure will have her room at the Hotel Martinez on the famous Boulevard de La Croisette, for a few nights and... movies. Let's hope, she wont forget her lipstick!

Mary-Laure said...

Miss Cavensdish - Burt's Bees is an excellent choice. It's all natural and I love that waxy honey smell... I discovered that brand one summer on my way to my dear Middlbury College so it's very sepcial for me.

Red Thread - thanks for the tip; I'm obsessed with SPF too, and I didn't know about the Aveeno lipbalm. It's amazing how few lipbalms feature SPF, isn't it?

Kitt - wow, being allergic to parabens must make your life diffcult, as they sneak them into everything!
It's so cool you have a local sopa maker! I'd love to know more about this - maybe in a post on your blog?

Marie - yes, I too HATE brands that claim to be good and natural when they're packed with ugly stuff... yuck!

Arlene - where do you get that heavenly homemade salve?

Pierre - I knew a film buff like you would think of Citizen Kane... I think that movie is WAY over rated, though.......

karina said...

I like L occitane creamy honey lip balm, I think is petroleum free.

design for mankind. said...

Eek! I didn't even look at the ingredients of my FIVE tins of Rosebud Salve. Dang. Off to throw them out. :(

Thanks for the tip, Mary! :)

Mary-Laure said...

Karina - I'm pretty sure L'Occitane stays clear of petroleum. They use high quality ingredients. I love that brand - everything they carry smells so good!

pierre said...

Am I a buff? You're right Citizen Kane is way over rated. But French critics loved it in the same way that some movies (so creative but so boring)are over rated in the over heat of the Cannes Film festival and then disapear in the depth of some history books.

Imelda Matt said...

I love the packaging but you're right about the petroleum...I find anything with chemicals leaves my lips crying out for more.

Face wash that has lauryl/laureth sulfates is a NO, NO!

Kitt said...

Hi mary-laure. As a matter of fact, I did post about the soap a while back! The post is here.

Sofia Barao said...

Hi Mary-Laure,

Yes it's hard to try to keep petroleum, parabens "clean". I also managed to make my husband use the stone of alun at least it's a beginning :)

chloe van paris said...

http://www.mondebio.com/
have fun with this.
I love the brand inexpensive bio cattier (the shampoos) and sanaflore hiule de drainage for the body not to oily.

littlebird said...

i am a devotee of of lip balm too and find that i have several, hidden around my house, work space and bagss : )
have you thought about buy ing hand made lip balms on etsy?
http://www.etsy.com/search_results.php?search_type=tag_title&search_query=natural+lip+balm

Mary-Laure said...

IMELDA MATT - I'm with you! I avoid SLS's at all costs. Which is very difficult.

SOFIA - ha ha ha, I tried to train my partner too! He's a good boy and deciphers the tiny lists of ingredients now every time he buys shampoo...

CHLOE - thanks for the tips, ma chérie!

LITTLEBIRD - wow, no I had not heard of those handmade balms! I can't wait to check it out, thanks for calling it to my attention...

Mary-Laure said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ace said...

I had no idea fresh was from Boston. That's by far my favourite cosmetics brand. I'm addicted to there lip glosses and at $24 a pop it's a pretty pricey addiction. My favourite lip balm is still burts bees original, I can't get enough of it's tingly goodness. There new pomagranite one is nice as well and has a good sheer color. I tried the rosebud salve cause I have a friend who swears by it but it just feels greasy to me.

Kwana said...

Rosebud is for me. I pick it up at Sephora at my local mall. I just love and feel and the little tin.

Kwana said...

So sad about the horrible ingredients though. Sigh. Must lobby for a better way.

JuliaB said...

Hello. Thank you for your lovely comments on my blog today! I am reading through your blog - there is so much of interest. I love your female icons sidebar, and I too would add the designer Elsa Schiaparelli some of whose dresses I have seen in exhibitions. Beautiful. There are lots of animal ingredients in cosmetics, and a good book is "cosmetic watch" by Charelwood and Robinson which lists all sorts of things which aren't obvious - unfortunately French perfume houses are quite instrumental in the destruction of rare animal populations like the Musk Deer. Also I wont use a thing which has been tested on animals. Including the Body Shop stuff because it's owned by L'oreal. Oh dear. Cosmetics are close to my heart. I am half french so was brought up with all these things!! Miss Cavendish is right about Burts Bees, Lush do some nice salves, or you can make your own from a mixture of waxes and butters. I think Angry Chicken (you can find the link on my page) has a recipie. xx