A product review of Inika lip balm
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Organic Lip Balm UK
What is the best organic lip balm in the UK? I have been asked this on quite a few occasions by people who know about my obsession with natural makeup and skincare products.
There are quite a few organic lip balms available in the UK now and certainly a few that stand out for me - and one of these is Inika lip balm.
Petroleum in lip balms
If you have read Part I of A Guide to Clean Beauty you will be familiar with the concept behind clean beauty and some of the issues in the clean beauty v mainstream products argument. If you have also read Part II of a Guide to Clean Beauty you will have seen the list of the ingredients that I recommend you try and avoid in your makeup and skincare products. One of these is ingredients derived from petroleum and they will show up on an ingredient list as mineral oil, petrolatum or paraffinium liquidum. Basically as ingredients they are tasteless, colourless and odourless. Cosmetic grade mineral oil is supposed to be a pure form without any contaminants but even so it is not something that I want to be putting on my lips all the time.
Are petroleum and mineral oil bad for lips?
Yes. The more you use a lip product containing petroleum or mineral oil, the drier your lips will become.
This is because the mineral oil coats the lips in an air tight seal and although they feel better upon application, the lips don't have the ability to manage their own moisture balance and start to dry out. The more you use a lip balm containing mineral oil or petroleum the drier you lips will become.
Many years ago I noticed this when I used petroleum based lip balms and after some research I changed to a natural product and after a couple of weeks had no more issues, just smooth, soft lips!
Many people use mainstream lip balms containing mineral oils and have no problems, however petrolatum based ingredients can also cause allergic reactions in those with sensitive skin.
Eating lip balm
No, I don't recommend that you eat it! However, whatever you put on your lips, whether it be lip balm, lipstick or lip gloss, you can't help but ingest some of it. It makes sense therefore to be putting something as natural as possible on your lips but you also want something that actually works too. Products containing natural butters and waxes are nourishing as well as protective.
I started using Inika Organic lip balm some months ago as I found wearing a mask made my lips dry out and was on the look out for more organic beauty products to try. Inika is an Australian based company but has a UK office and website too. They have won over 40 awards for innovation and excellence and also won the Best Skincare Brand in the Organic Beauty Awards' 2020. Their products are certified vegan and cruelty free.
The lip balm is 3.5g in size and costs £16.50, which is certainly at the top end in price for a lip balm, but after reading the ingredient list I was very happy to go ahead and give it a try, and I wasn't disappointed.
I have listed the ingredients of the Inika lip balm in a format that most people will understand, without the legal INCI name. Congratulations to Inika however as they are one of a few companies who put more information on their ingredient lists to help customers identify what is in their products.
The ingredients are (without INCI names): sunflower oil*, candelilla wax, castor oil*, coconut oil*, carnauba wax*, shea butter*, peppermint oil*, natural flavours* and vitamin e.
A great natural lip balm
The Inika lip balm comes in a lovely black slim case, longer (approx 9cm) and slimmer (approx 1.2cm) than your average lip balm or lipstick. It looks luxurious with an internal gold casing and winds up as with conventional lip balms. I'd be very happy to whip it out of my bag on any social occasion. The end of the product is already angled which makes it easy to start to wear and it goes on beautifully smoothly. Soft but not mushy (a pet hate of mine) and applies evenly without distorting the actual shape of the end of the balm.
The actual size and shape of the end of the lip balm is perfect for applying to lips in that I can put it on without a mirror and know that I have not got it all outside my lip area. It is completely clear upon application with a satin look, not as much as a full on gloss but an attractive satiny sheen which makes the lips look moisturised and soft.
It has a mild peppermint taste. I have to say peppermint is not my favourite flavour but I don't find this overpowering and there is an extremely mild tingle on the lips, but this may just be me! It lasts well and I have found it good for protecting my lips on the many dog walks that I do in all weathers. I have also tried wearing it as a base under some organic lipsticks and it has performed very well for this too.
It does not contain a sunscreen but at this time of year this is not a problem for me. All in all a great product with a luxury feel and look, will definitely be buying this one again.
Inika lip balm £3.5g for £16.50.
You might also be interested in my review on face tanning drops.
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