janet @ the taste space

The Best Vegan Lip Balms

In Beauty, Favourites on March 2, 2013 at 7:37 AM

I should probably call this “My Favourite Vegan Lip Balms”. This isn’t an exhaustive review of all vegan balms, but I definitely feel like I have some winners I wanted to share. With this cold weather, I have been evaluating my lip balm stash.

As I investigated vegan beauty products while making my bathbomb cupcakes, I became interested in vegan lip balms. A recovering long-time lip balm lover, I thought about making my own. Then I reasoned there are such great products out there, why experiment with expensive ingredients when others have already made the perfect formulation? So I broadened my lip balm search beyond my long-time favourites.

First of all, why bother with vegan balms? As something you place on your lips, you are bound to ingest it, too. 7 lbs worth according to Dr. Oz. When you look at it that way, maybe all those chemicals aren’t the best option.

What makes balms NOT vegan? PETA has a good list of animals ingredients, but the worse culprits are lanolin (sheep oil), tallow (beef fat), and casein (milk protein). Honey and beeswax are controversial topics for vegans. I don’t eat honey because it is a high-glycemic sweetener but less antsy about using beeswax. However, in my research, I found I preferred the balms without beeswax. And the more I looked at the ingredient lists of my balms, I thought the same methodology I employed for my cooking (unprocessed whole foods) would be better than balms filled with wacky ingredients as preservatives and dyes.

Without further ado, here are my favourite vegan lip balms (pics courtesy of originating websites).

1. Orange Thymeorange thyme  vegan lip balm

Rachel makes possibly my favourite lips balms. They are homemade in small batches with natural ingredients. The balms literally melt into your lips and moisturize them for hours. I love these. She has a wide variety of flavours but so far my favourites are pomegranate chocolate, marshmallow hot cocoa and Meyer lemon cupcake (yes it smells like a cupcake). As a small, independent retailer, my only problem was receiving a balm that had melted into the cap, likely knocked over during productive, which was not replaced. Quality control beforehand would make this a fool-proof item.

Ingredients: avocado oil, cocoa butter, candelilla wax, shea butter, natural and essential oils.

2. Hurrawhurraw vegan raw lip balms

Raw and vegan lip balms. I picked up my first Hurraw balm at the Veg Fest after a stranger whispered they were the best balms ever. I agree, I love these. Luscious and moisturizing. A bit firmer than Orange Thyme balms, but long-lasting. I only put them as #2 since they cost more and difficult to find in Canada. My favourite flavour (so far) is the Moon Balm (extra thick with vanilla and undertones of chamomile).

Ingredients (Moon Balm): Persea gratissima (avocado) oil, Prunus amygdalus dulcis (sweet almond) oil, Euphorbia cerifera (candelilla) wax, Theobroma cacao (cocoa) seed butter, Cocos nucifera (coconut) oil, Ricinus communis (castor) seed oil, Olea europaea (olive) fruit oil, Argania spinosa (argan) kernel oil, Rosa rubiginosa (rosehip) seed oil, Limnanthes alba (meadowfoam) seed oil, Tocopherols (vitamin e), Vanilla planifolia (vanilla) bean, Myroxylon balsamum (peru balsam) oil, Matricaria recutita (blue chamomile) flower extract

3. C.O. Bigelow (from Bath & Body Works)mentha vegan lip balm

While not all my (previous) favourite balms are vegan (the Lemon Balm has beeswax but still awesome), others are vegan like the mentha lip shine and the mentha ultra lip shine. I don’t always like all the goop, but these tend to be very smooth and moisturizing without being tacky. I find I go through them pretty fast, though, which sucks because they can be pricy. Check to see if each balm is vegan, YMMV.

Ingredients (Mentha Lip Shine): Polybutene, Petrolatum, Hydrogenated Polyisobutene, Mentha Piperita (Peppermint) Oil, Menthyl Lactate, Octyldodecanol, Quaternium-18 Hectorite, Saccharin Propylene Carbonate.

4. Crazy Rumorspeppermint crazy rumors vegan lip balm

Another all-vegan line-up of lip balms. They are a bit more solid than the other balms but slide on smooth. They have lots of flavours (which don’t particularly enthuse me) but some flavours are more mellow like peppermint twist.

Ingredients (peppermint twist): Certified Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Macadamia Seed Oil, Certified Organic Shea Butter, Candelilla Wax, Soy Wax, Jojoba Oil, Carnauba Wax, Natural & Organic Flavors and/or Pure Essential Oils, Vitamin E, Rosemary Leaf Extract, Natural Stevia

5. Bare Englishbare english vegan lip balms

A brand new entry into the vegan lip balm market, Bare English is local to boot. Meshell has a great review here. These balms are tea-infused and glide on smooth, but firmer than my favourites. I don’t find they last as long as my favourites, either.  The best part (other than this being a Toronto company) is that they are reasonably priced and definitely easier to find in Toronto (also in NYC) and they will ship for free anywhere in Canada. They only have 3 flavours for now: coco-mint, vanilla coconut and raspberry pear.

Ingredients (coco-mint): Candelilla wax, cocoa Seed butter, Peppermint leaf infused olive oil, castor seed oil, coconut oil, shea butter, mint flavour oil, sweet almond oil, jojoba seed oil, vitamin E

6. Aqua Blossomaqua blossom vegan lip balm

Another etsy shop with nice vegan balms. Again, all-natural, homemade in small batches, Ashley doesn’t make balms, though, she makes butters. They are very luscious, thick and glossy. I thought they would last longer but they seem to get absorbed fairly quickly. I am loving the vanilla mint and pumpkin cheesecake butters, though.

Ingredients: Shea butter, sweet almond oil, apricot kernel oil, avocado oil, candelilla wax, coconut oil, kokum butter, soybean oil, essential and/or lip-safe fragrance (flavor) oil, vitamin e oil

Do you have a favourite lip balm? Is it vegan? Have you tried these balms yet?

Here are some others that I have been meaning to try:

Epically Epic Soap


Meow Meow Tweet Vegan Balms

None of Your Beeswax Lip Balm or Ultrabalm from Lush

Vegan Balms by Merry Hempsters

Peppermint Chocolate Balm from Canfield Crafts

Whipped Lip Butters from Live Beautifully Body (the all-natural balms contain beeswax)

Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Lip Balms

Long Winter Farm (all natural but contains beeswax)

Little Batch (all natural but contains beeswax)

Petite Threla (all natural but contains beeswax)

Country Blossom (all natural but contains beeswax)

La Curacio Lip Balm from La Bella Figura (all natural but contains beeswax)

This is my submission to this week’s Healthy Vegan Fridays.

best vegan lip balms

  1. My favorite brand in Meow Meow Tweet. Their Grapefruit Clove flavor is absolutely divine.

  2. I love the Bare English Balms! I have 2 of them on the go right now. I love that they are local as well. If I see the other ones though, I’ll definitely try them!

    • I always have oodles on the go. I stash them everywhere – work, pocket, kitchen, office, etc. I like to play “what flavour am I wearing?” with Rob before we go to bed. 🙂

      If you like Bare English, then you’ll love Hurraw and Orange Thyme. 🙂 Although I don’t know where to buy Hurraw locally. Orange Thyme is online only and it sucks now that shipping to Canada jumped a lot in price lately. 😦

  3. I LOVE Hurraw! I order them online – cheaper and you get to choose your flavor. I, too, love the night time formula.

    I’ve tried Merry Hempster, and I’ve never been impressed. Something about the flavor :-/

    • Awesome! When I move to the US, I hope to try a few more flavours. Have you tried the new Ayurvedic ones? They sound awesome. 🙂

      As well, if you like Hurraw, you will love Orange Thyme. Let me know if you try them. 🙂

  4. Thanks for the mention! Get in touch anytime if you’d like to try one of ours 🙂

  5. This is a fantastic list! I have Hurraw and I’ve tried the Merry Hempsters. I liek them both and I’m glad I have a few more to try now.

  6. I’m on a lip balm hunt atm and i’m surprised you didn’t mention Burt’s bees! They’re vegan and I’m still thinking of buying their vanilla bean lipbalm 😜

  7. Too bad #3 isn’t actually vegan! Looks like a bunch of mixed chemicals to me (Quaternium-18 is a mixture of quaternary ammonium chloride salts made from fatty acids of tallow). Just because they don’t list it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s not there. Companies don’t have to list something if it’s an ingredient of an ingredient. Just be careful & do research. All other’s look fine. 🙂

  8. Love this list of Lip balms to try! I do hope you’ll stop by and try the Chocolate Peppermint, it’s popular all year round! It does have beeswax, so not really considered vegan, but it’s chock full of awesome natural ingredients. 🙂

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