Lip balm seems to be a never ending requirement in my beauty stash. So long as I refuse to drink water I shall never quit collecting lip balms.

One lip balm I tried many years ago, and never again since, is Carmex. If we are talking about icons in the lip balm category than surely Carmex is right up there. I always find really famous beauty products to be the most interesting. Sometimes they deserve their place in history, but others make no sense at all. When I first tried Carmex about 8 years ago, I hated it. There is no sugar coating it …. I just didn’t like it. Except I couldn’t exactly remember why.

When this little white pot with yellow lid came across my desk the other week, I looked at and pondered. Should I try it again? I didn’t like it the first time so why would I like it now? What was it that I didn’t like? I decided to put the past behind me and give it another go.

What I Say ….

  • As soon as I opened the pot memories came flooding back. That menthol smell is unmistakable, and even with my dodgy sense of smell. Menthol falls under the ‘Mint’ category in my mind so I am not a fan of the smell.
  • The formula looks waxy but feels quite thick. It really resembles Vaseline to me but with a distinct yellow colour.
  • Once I start applying it to my lips it feels really silky and not waxy at all. It melts easily so spreading is not difficult, even in ice cold temperatures.
  • There is a tingling feeling that instantly comes over my lips. It is a similar feeling to most lip plumpers (DuWop anyone?) and lasts for about 20-30 seconds for me. I personally do not like this feeling at all.
  • On days when my lips are really chapped and already have a burning sensation, applying this lip balm feels like added torture. 
  • Once the stinging/tingling/whatever has subsided, my lips are left feeling cool and sort of numb, and can last about 5 minutes after application. The best way I can explain it is if you hold an ice cube between your lips for about 60 seconds, it is like that.
  • It does provide a great level of moisture. While it is on my lips they feel hydrated and it smoothes over any dry bits that stick up. It is fabulous if you want your lips to look healthy even though you know they aren’t.
  • The hydrated feeling can sometimes last up to an hour for me, and the shiny look of the balm lasts about 20-30 minutes. After this time I find my dry flaky bits are back and sometimes even more. I understand this product has some ‘exfoliating’ benefits but as I usually wear my lip balm under lipstick or lipgloss, I don’t want those dry bits coming off in the middle of the day.

I really like the feel of this product after all the ‘sensations’ are over and it is just doing it’s normal thing. The exfoliating factor makes me want to limit its use to night times or days I KNOW I am not seeing anyone. It is a gentle exfoliator but if you have super dry lips like me than you know how flaky they are already.

If you like a little burn in your balm than Carmex could be your perfect match!

What Carmex Say ….

The Carmex® lip balm jar is best known as a daily lip balm suitable for all seasons. Packaged in a handy pot, it can be used under or over lipstick for a gloss finish that helps to add moisture and relive pain from rough, chapped lips. When first applied, Carmex provides the lips with a tingling sensation. Enriched with camphor & menthol in a base of cocoa butter and waxes, the formula also includes salicylic acid to assist in the mild exfoliation and refinement of the delicate lip area.

“Before applying lipstick or gloss, I always prime with Carmex lip balm as it has a mild exfoliant and gently buffs the lips. I have used a baby toothbrush in the past to exfoliate the lips but Carmex works better for gentle exfoliating.”

Amanda Redgrave, Make-up Artist

Carmex® lip balm makes a perfect moisturising topcoat for lipstick as well. It’s especially good in winter when some matt lipstick formulas can be a challenge for dry lips, as it creates balance and lends a hint of shine.


AU $5.99 rrp from Terry White Chemists, My Chemist, Pulse Pharmacy, Amcal, pharmacies and selected supermarkets. To view all the stockists visit the Where To Buy page.

US $1.69 at Walgreens and many other retailers. See the full list here

UK £2.54 from Boots

Find out more about Carmex and see their extensive range on their funky website. I must say it is a really cool website for a pot of lip balm!

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This product was provided for consideration, in accordance with our Disclosure Policy. All opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are my own and remain 100% uninfluenced.

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