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Vaseline Lip Therapy Crème Brulee Mini is my go-to dry lip fixer

This mini-salve keeps my lips soft and scented for hours. When it’s cold, you'll find it ​tucked into my North Face or ready on my kitchen table.
Vasline’s Lip Therapy is simple to apply with your finger — and, like magic, the tiny tub doesn’t seem to end.
Vasline’s Lip Therapy is simple to apply with your finger — and, like magic, the tiny tub doesn’t seem to end.Amazon

You have your Supergoop!, your Glossier, your Burt’s Bees: Whether you squeeze their bodies or twist their caps, they’re all great, cult-favorite choices in the fight for your lips against the cold. I have a different, seemingly unconventional recommendation that’s served me well these past two months: a tiny tub of Vaseline’s Lip Therapy Crème Brulee Mini. And yes, I would be willing to start a cult in its name.

Vaseline — founded in the late 1800s, according to its website — does its job so well because it’s a simple product, and its Lip Therapy Crème Brulee Mini is no different. It’s made from a short list of reliable ingredients: petrolatum (or mineral oil jelly), flavoring, cocoa seed butter and an FDA-approved dye, FD&C Yellow #5.

Vaseline Lip Therapy Crème Brulee Lip Balm Mini

I keep using the term “tiny” or “mini” to describe the balm — it’s even in its name — and I want you to know it is very small. Vaseline’s Lip Therapy is only around 0.25 ounces (I use lots of chapstick, and they’re typically packaged in 0.5-ounce capsules instead) but, like magic, the tiny tub doesn’t seem to end. I apply my Vaseline Lip Therapy around three times a day because its thick consistency requires less reapplication than other lip balms I’ve tried. It’s lasted two months so far — I expect to get another month from it before tossing this tub out for a new one, despite how much I use it and how tiny it is.

Vaseline’s Lip Therapy comes in a few different flavors:

I encourage you to take your pick, as its fragrance (or lack thereof) is part of what makes Lip Therapy such a personalized joy to use. The Crème Brulee version, my personal preference, is particularly rich. “Crème brulee,” of course, is a pudding-like custard with a brittle sugar surface. Vaseline does a surprisingly good job at delivering on that original premise here, and I often find myself rubbing my lips together in subconscious appreciation after applying the balm. (While all of the flavors come packaged with different taglines on their label, Crème Brulee’s says: “For deliciously kissable lips,” and I have to thank it for that, too. Though perhaps I should do some scientific polling first.)

While lots of lip balms are applied via stick or tube, Vaseline’s Lip Therapy Mini is a tiny tub that goes onto your lips thickly and smoothly with your finger. That could make it more difficult to apply than a stick of chapstick: Sometimes I’ll look in the mirror and notice it mushed a tad beyond my lips. Luckily and happily, I’ll simply push the extra balm back onto my lips to re-coat them.

Vaseline — like other petrolatum, oils and silicones — is an occlusive, which means the Lip Therapy Mini attracts moisture to the skin and creates a protective barrier. Vaseline doesn’t provide sun protection, either — if that’s on your mind, here’s how to shop for lip balms with SPF.

Other lip balms to consider

If you’re looking for a moisturizing lip balm to repair damaged lips, or you find yourself outside and interested in a lip balm that provides SPF, here are highly-rated alternatives to Vaseline’s Lip Therapy that should do the trick.

Vanicream Lip Protectant

We previously interviewed four dermatologists who suggested using Vanicream Lip Protectant, a mineral SPF lip balm that’s free of allergens like fragrances and dyes, which makes it a solid alternative to Vaseline’s Lip Therapy Crème Brulee Mini. Its lack of allergens means it’s especially useful for sensitive skins, too. Vanicream is unscented and offers SPF 30 protection from the sun, the brand says. It has a 4.4-star average rating from more than 5,920 reviews on Amazon.

Jack Black Intense Therapy Lip Balm SPF 25

Jack Black, like Vanicream, professes to be colorless and odorless in its original tube, though you can opt to buy it in a few different flavors: Black Tea & Blackberry, Lemon & Shea Butter, Shea Butter & Vitamin E and Grapefruit & Ginger. It provides a matte finish, in my experience with it. It contains vitamin E, shea butter and antioxidants. On Amazon, Jack Black’s Intense Therapy Lip Balm has a 4.7-star average rating from 15,617 reviews.

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