Save, Spend, or Splurge: Lip balms that deliver moisture + color

The intense heat we’re experiencing this summer has made my lips drier than usual. Although I love wearing matte lip products, it’s just too uncomfortable to wear now because even with a balm underneath, my lips still dry out like a raisin. I’ve been reaching for tinted lip balms more instead, as the fuss-free application gives me juicy moisture and a hint of color at the same time! Whether you want just a sheer tint or full-on pigmentation, we’ve got great recos for every kind of budget.

Under P500

We’ve been long-time fans of the Lip Ice Sheer Color Tint (P145 from Watsons) and Nivea Fruity Lip Balm (P102 from Watsons), and we still love these drugstore finds even now. The Lip Ice Sheer Color Tint looks solid white in the tube but applies as bright pink (Strawberry variant). The warmer your body temperature is, the deeper the color shows! If you want a hint of shimmer, the Nivea Fruity Balm gives a natural-looking, rosy pink tint that offers subtle color and shine.  

Want some serious color? Generation Happy Skin Active Love your Lips Intense Color Butter Balm (P349 each, P698 for set of 2) is a legit lipstick-like balm. The color is amazingly opaque in one swipe, while retaining that smooth glide and moisture of a lip balm. It also comes in four shades so you can perfectly match any FOTD!

Under P1,000

Burt’s Bees Tinted Lip Balm (P545 from Beauty Bar) gives the classic Burts Bees Lip balm a dash of color. Unlike the hard waxy texture of the other lip balms, this formula feels lush and super smooth, so it glides on lips like butter. The Rose shade we swatched gives a healthy pink sheen, and there are a total of 6 shades to choose from.

K-Palette Lasting Lip Tint Stick (P795 from Beauty Bar) offers sheer, slightly buildable color that feels more creamy than balmy. Since this is a tint, some of the color stays put even after the balm fades. The hydration lasts though, so you don’t need to reapply this as often.

Instead of heavy coverage, the Canmake Stay on Balm Rouge (P560 from CanmakePH) has a glossy, wet finish with watercolor-like translucency. The color is vibrant but the texture is lightweight, and you can immediately feel how well it moisturizes your lips. I wouldn’t recommend layering this because of how glossy one swipe already is.

Revlon Balm Stain (P575 from Watsons) is a classic staple that we just can’t get enough of, having followed every variation since they first came out 7 years ago! The richness of the pigmentation varies with each shade but the colors are generally buildable so you can control the opacity you want to achieve. There are so many shades and even matte finishes to choose from, plus they often go on sale. I did notice that my lips feel dry again when the balm fades so reapplication is a must.

P1,000 and above

For a truly pampered pout, the Bobbi Brown Extra Lip Tint (P1,600 from Bobbi Brown) is an ultra-moisturizing balm that also smoothens your lips, making it look (and feel) plush. It wears beautifully under lipstick, but gives a pretty sheer color when worn alone - perfect for those days when you want to look put together without much effort.

Not quite a lip balm but the Makeup Forever Artist Rouge Light (P1,250 from Makeup Forever) feels as light and comfortable as one! The formula is incredibly hydrating, and the pigment builds opacity in one or two swipes (depending on the shade). It also does not highlight chapped or flaky lips so pick this up if you want to wear color while your lips recover hydration.

Are tinted lip balms part of your summer kikay kit? What are your favorites?

Photography by Nicole Quindara, with backgrounds by ohmeed and LEEMO