Seven Of The Best Lip Products The Viva Team Swears By

By Lucy Slight
Photo / Babiche Martens, 2019

When it comes to experimenting with beauty, there’s no more fun category than the lips. The options are endless — balms, serums, oils, stains, pencils, gloss and sticks — and whether you’re a product junkie or you like to keep a tight edit, chances are you’ve got a firm favourite

With that in mind, beauty editor Lucy Slight asked the Viva team to share their personal lip-product picks — and there really is something in the line-up for everyone.

I have gone back to basics recently after spying my sister’s Vaseline pot lying around, and a little bird also told me it’s a makeup artist’s go-to. It is the original hero and still to this day doesn’t miss a beat; it’s glossy, not too sticky, and easy on the bank account. — Annabel Dickson, fashion assistant

This was, I think, my first lippy — a sheer wash of colour and simple casing made it good for a teenager — and I still use it nearly every day. I like it over a lip liner, or on its own, and it’s good for my fair skin (lipstick can often look too intense on me). Every time I pull that skinny silver tube out of my bag I feel a rush of nostalgia — that soul-soothing hit we all keep seeking — and swipe it on sans mirror because you truly don’t need one for this. Though it looks very dark, don’t panic, because it really isn’t. And it has this magical, mysterious quality of looking incredible on many different skin tones, enhancing your natural lip colour, and making you look like you’ve just had a hot pash.

Rightly a classic, this lipstick was flying under the radar until it went viral last year, as a new generation discovered its remarkably versatile nature (the user-generated videos are quite mesmerising). It’s a good thing that TikTok moves on to the next thing quickly, so Black Honey isn’t sold out anymore. — Emma Gleason, commercial editor

I don’t always remember to, but when I do feel like my lips are feeling crusty, the Lip Aid balm from Sans does the trick. It says it does everything it needs to do for lush lips — hydrates, stimulates cell renewal and “puts dry lips into recovery mode”. Because I’m no beauty expert, I’ll believe anything, and all I can say from my experience is that this product actually works. — Dan Ahwa, creative and fashion director

When I was breastfeeding my daughter, I discovered the magical soothing properties of Medela nipple cream. It’s made from lanolin (the greasy substance you get from sheep’s wool), and man, does it make a great lip balm. I guess I figured, if a teeny amount is going in my baby’s mouth, then why shouldn’t it go on mine? My chapped, sorry lips have stayed abreast of the dry weather ever since. — Rebecca Barry Hill, writer

I’ll admit, this is a bit of a splurge for a lip balm, but there’s something so nice about having a really indulgent product like this on your bedside table. I always try to remember to apply lip balm at night before I go to sleep, and this thick balm really stays put, keeping my lips hydrated all night and leaving them feeling super-soft come morning. It rubs on clear and doesn’t have a noticeable scent so it’s a great all-rounder, and in fact, it’s perfect for prepping your lips before applying lipstick too. — Lucy Slight, beauty editor

I’ve never been a big wearer of lipsticks, mainly because they can be a bit drying for me, so to give my pout some added colour I always reach for Benefit’s Benetint Lip and Cheek Tint. It lasts practically all day, through kisses and lunch, and gives a lovely rosy hue to your cheeks, too. I often wear it with a little bit of Maybelline Lifter Gloss in Topaz brushed over the top. — Julia Gessler, digital editor

As a tried-and-true lipstick lover, I’ve only recently gotten back into lipgloss. A couple of years of mask-wearing and intermittent working from home took me out of the habit of wearing bright lipsticks (some favourites are M.A.C Retro Matte, Nars Matte Velvet Lip Pencil, Kester Black and Sisley Phyto Rouge) and now it feels like quite a big deal to don a bold lip. My go-to lip colour right now is Ilia Balmy Gloss in Only You, a tinted lip oil packed with hydrating hyaluronic acid and Salicornia herbacea (an extract said to make your lips 6000 per cent smoother!). The colour is the ideal pinky-nude and stays on surprisingly long for a lip oil. — Johanna Thornton, deputy editor

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