Battle of the Balms: Glossier Balm Dotcom

I recently upped my Accutane dose and my lips are pisssssed. So I thought, “Hey, finally time to review one of my favorite heavy-duty all-purpose lip balms that I’ve been meaning to review for forever.”

Glossier Balm Dotcom ($12/0.5oz) is marketed as “a hydrating, long-lasting, multipurpose lip and skin salve that’s packed with antioxidants and natural emollients to nourish and repair dry, chafed skin. The dense, waxy texture stays in place to seal in moisture wherever it goes.”

That’s … fairly accurate, actually.

Speed in relieving dryness:

This one provides pretty quick relief — ten or fifteen minutes until my lips relax a little.

Depth of hydration:

This one is weird; though it provides quick short-term relief, and penetrates deeply over time, I feel like the middle range is where it’s weakest — it takes a long time to penetrate to the deepest layers. And no matter how long I wear it, I never get to the point where I can simply wipe my lips with a tissue and all the dead skin comes off. It’s good, but it’s not Bag Balm/Bite Agave good.


This has a pleasant lip feel — a little waxy, but softly so. It’s not as greasy as Vaseline, not gritty like the Nuxe, not oily like Smith’s Rosebud. It definitely feels like a petrolatum+ formula (by which I mean an improved-upon petrolatum, which it basically is — it’s got petrolatum, castor oil, beeswax, AND lanolin). I think this blend of superstar ingredients gives it a great all-around performance and good all-around lip feel, but that also means it doesn’t seem to be a standout in any particular category — not as long-wearing as Bite (but also more comfortable), not as lightweight as Smith’s (but longer-lasting), not as deeply hydrating as Bag Balm (but also doesn’t taste like a hospital). I reach for this one over Jack Black (unless I’m really in the mood for a particular flavor, which definitely happens!), but if my lips are in a lot of pain I’ll grab the Elizabeth Arden (for day) or Bite Beauty (for night).


I find that if I’m talking/eating/drinking/chewing my lips — normal life stuff — it takes about three hours before I feel like I need to reapply. (Please note that this is the subjective “feel like I need to reapply,” not “there is not a speck of this product left on my lips”–though some product is definitely still hanging out on my lips at the three-hour mark, it’s not enough to keep my lips feeling hydrated.) If applied as an overnight treatment, there is no product left on my lips eight hours later, but my lips are not yet dry and tight (much less dry and cracking).

Ease of Use:

On the one hand, tube packaging! Yay! On the other — no slant-tipped applicator. You still have to squeeze a bit out of the top and manually apply to your lips. While I appreciate that I’m not putting dirty fingers into a pot of lip balm, it’s annoying to know that I need to disinfect my hands before applying a lip balm.


It comes in five flavors: original (unscented), Coconut, Cherry, Rose, and Mint. I’ve only tried the original, and it’s an inoffensive petrolatum castor oil scent. It’s fine. (The castor oil isn’t as strong as in the Elizabeth Arden balm.)

Tint: Both the Cherry and Rose options are tinted (sheer red/sheer pink, respectively).

SPF: No.


This product gets a lot of hype, and I think it’s deserved — though other products outperform it in every category, it’s a well-rounded product. I’m looking forward to trying some of the flavored options when I finish this tube!


Petrolatum, Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil, Beeswax/Cera Alba/Cire D’Abeille, Lanolin, Dipalmithoyl Hydroxyproline, Theobroma Grandiflorum Seed Butter, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Bran Extract, Tocopheryl Acetate, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Extract, Tocopherol, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Extract


Glossier Balm Dotcom 4 4 4 3 3 Scent: 1; Tint: 1 20
TokyoMilk Dark 4 5 4 4 1 Scent: 2 20
Vaseline Rosy Lips 4 5 4 3 2 Scent: 1; Tint: 1 20
Nuxe Reve de Miel 4 4 4 2 2 Scent: 1 17
Elizabeth Arden 4 5 5 3 5 SPF: 1 23
Lancôme Juicy Shaker 2 1 2 1 3 Scent: 1; Tint: 1 11
Smith's Rosebud Smith’s Rosebud 5 4 5 2 5 Scent: 1 22
Bite Beauty Agave Lip Mask Bite Agave 5 5 4 5 3 Scent: 1;  Tint: 1 24
Bag Balm Bag Balm 5 5 5 4 4 — — 22
Jack Black Jack Black 4 4 4 3 5 Scent: 1; SPF: 1 22
Tried this one? Love it / hate it / on your shopping list / hell no? Talk about it!