Sunday, August 26, 2012

Ignite the Imagination!: Black Widow Balms

As much as I love nail polish, I love makeup, too. So every now and then I veer off into the less familiar territory of makeup reviewing. Today is one of those days. Now, I'm not a lipstick girl. I probably only own three real lipsticks. While I love the idea, and there are some out there I would die to own, I haven't found many good ones. They tend to be either too drying, or they don't last. Enter tinted lip balm! Lip balm, I probably have about 100 of! 

Enter Black Widow Balm. First of all: LOVE the packaging! Typical lip balm tube size and shape, but in black with an adorable sugar-skull looking guy on it. Black Widow Balm's website states: "We have a healthy obsession with healthy lips. We've created a moisturizing line of tinted lip balm butter to smooth your pout. All our lip balms contain rich shea butter, mango butter and coconut oil with mood soothing essential oils to gently lift your spirits."
 On to the pretty!

Okay, so this one is not so pretty. This is my bare lip, after abstaining from any balm use for at least an hour. You know, for comparison purposes. I have a very sensitive nose, but I can be very bad at identifying smells, so I'll give my guesses as to smell, then the shop description. 

Our first balm is Gossip, a sheer bright red balm with a very cinnamon-y smell. 

Black Widow calls it "The scandal maker." A sheer, cherry pop of color. "Smells like just baked cinnamon rolls with a sprig of mint." This is easily one of my favorites- the color builds, so with a few applications, you get a nice red lip look. I'm not sure how to quantify it, but I applied all balms just as I would a regular, non tinted balm. 

Next up is Holly, a sheer, juicy orange with a very fruity- but not cirtusy, smell.

"Never Go Lightly" This is my first experience with orange lips, and I kind of like it. Especially since it's sheer, and not too in-your-face. Don't get me wrong, I love bright colors, but since I don't wear lip color often, this is a great way to experiment a bit.  "Tantalizing tangerine tint. Raspberry fragrance."

Kiss of Death is an orange-y, brick red tint with a spicy scent.

"XXXOOO" This one is darker and less subtle than Holly. Still sheer, still appropriate for a day look, but would definitely punch up and evening look as well. "Kiss of Death is a knock-out red. Essential extracts on cinnamon, clove and basil oils softens your lip and is scented to spicy perfection."

Orb is a sheer, coral pink with a fruity, berry fragrance.

"Celestial shine. Orb lip balm colors your lips to a shimmering light pink. . . . lavendar, spicy black pepper and sweet raspberry." I put this color to the "work test" and it passed with flying colors. This is easily my favorite of the bunch, as it's very soft and neutral. 

Ursula looks a bit scary in the tube, but applies as a sheer, dark purple. Scented, but I couldn't identify it.

Dramatic, but not overbearing. "Ursula is the first in our tinted lip balm line. It tints to a bold black-violet color while soothing lips with clove, lavender and vanilla." 

Voodoo also looks frighteningly dark in the tube, but goes on a sheer brownish. Another scent I couldn't quite place.

I have incredibly pale skin, but this would be a lovely "neutral" shade if you are have a darker complexion. "Voodoo lip balm colors your lips to a ripe plum tint. Essential extracts of cinnamon, black pepper and lavendar oils" I would call this color more of a cocoa than a plum, but there are definite purple undertones.

Last up is Spell. This one was more opaque than the rest- a creamy, dusty violet color with a fruit scent.

"Spell's charm is found in its lilac bloom color. . . . vanilla, black pepper and lavender oil starts with a sweet scent and finishes clean." Guess I was wrong about fruity? Spell is definitely the boldest of the bunch.

As I stated up-post, Black Widow Balms definitely passed the "work-test". I kept Orb in my pocket at work all day, and used it exclusively. They go on smoothly- light and oily (in a good way), not at all sticky. It feels like it sits on top of the lip, but is very moisturizing. Slightly sweet, but not flavored. Great color payoff and very shiny. I noticed- with Orb at least, and to some extent Gossip- that the color builds. When the shine/moisture wears off and it's time to reapply, the color is still there. Not really a stain, because you can get the color off, but it does become more intense with repeated application. Black Widow recommends layering these over your favorite lip color, but it certainly isn't necessary.

Bottom line: these balms are amazing. Feels just like a standard lip balm, with a pop of color and great scent. Orb has become my go-to lip color, and I reach for it far more often than I ever have with my lipsticks. Holly and Gossip are definitely close seconds. Black Widow Balms run $8 a piece, and can be purchased on Etsy or directly from their website. Be sure to stop by and like them on Facebook as well!

Support your indies, ladies!

* These products were provided to me for an honest review.

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