Why I’m Ditching my $40 Lip Stain for a $4 Stick of Maybelline

As someone who is always on the hunt for the best new skincare and beauty products, my Sephora bill has become its own line item on my monthly credit card bill. It’s basically an adult candy store; everything is beautifully packaged, elegantly displayed, and with new brands and products added every quarter, there’s always a new array of things you don’t need to buy to refresh your skincare tray or makeup collection.

However, no matter how expensive the lip gloss or balm I used, my lips were always–and I mean ALWAYS–chapped. I tried everything from LANEIGE’s cult favorite Lip Sleeping Mask, to French Girl’s Roseh Lip Polish, but nothing worked. My one mainstay miracle product was (and still is) Aquaphor with SPF 30, but I wanted something tinted that I could swipe on throughout the day over my base coat of Aquaphor.

For a long time, I used Dior’s Lip Addict Lacquer Plump Lip Stain. However, I soon realized that this was likely the root of my lips’ constant chapping and peeling. So, as a skincare fanatic tired of striking out with expensive lip purchases, I looked at my favorite beauty editors’ holy grail drugstore lip products in hopes of coming across a miracle. I like to think of it as a cost-benefit analysis: if I can get a lip product who is as good or better than the $40 one I was using for under $15, then that’s a keeper.

The entire line of Dior Addict Lacquer Plump Lipsticks.
The entire line of Dior Addict Lacquer Plump Lipsticks. Photo credit: Chic Profile

After much trial and error, I finally found a product that put not only the other drugstore lip balms to shame, but my Dior lip stain as well: Maybelline’s Baby Lips Glow Balm. With packaging suitable for a ten-year-old girl and a name that is only slightly creepy, the Baby Lips stick isn’t the most glamorous to pull out of your bag and touch up your lips, but it gets the job done. The formula in the “My Pink” is designed to give you your perfect shade of pink by adapting to the Ph levels in your lips. Not only does it give you literally the perfect shade of pink, but Baby Lips’s moisturizing properties are unmatched. While I continuously apply it simply because it’s fun, looks great, and makes my lips buttery soft, I could theoretically put it on twice a day and still have perfectly plump, hydrated lips.

Baby Lips Glow Balm, $3.99 at Walgreens and walgreens.com
Baby Lips Glow Balm, $3.99 at Walgreens and walgreens.com Photo credit: Cosmopolitan

Now, the Baby Lips Glow Balm has pride of place in my cosmetics bag next to my Nurse Jamie Derma Roller. I use it constantly, and now have three different sticks spread out between my purses, car, and desk, so I’m never caught without my new favorite product.

If you want better-than-designer results for $4, head to Walgreens and try this miracle product for yourself.

Carolyn Hammond

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