Burt’s Bees Lipstick Swatches and Review

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How to cite: Wong M. Burt’s Bees Lipstick Swatches and Review. Lab Muffin Beauty Science. April 20, 2016. Accessed June 21, 2024. https://labmuffin.com/burts-bees-lipstick-swatches-and-review/

Burt’s Bees have launched a new line of lipsticks. I’ve never had much luck with “natural” lipsticks – the ones I’ve tried don’t glide on well and end up patchy, or have poor pigmentation, or some other issue – but these are surprisingly nice!

Burt's Bees Lipstick Swatches and Review

Burt’s Bees Lipstick Swatches

There are 14 shades available – I tried 7 of them:

Burt's Bees Lipstick Swatches and Review

  • Nile Nude – pale caramel nude
  • Blush Basin – light dusty rose
  • Tulip Tide – pastel lilac
  • Fuchsia Flood – rose pink
  • Scarlet Soaked – deep bright red
  • Juniper Water – plum
  • Russet River – maroon

There’s also Sunset Cruise (orange-rose), Iced Iris (pale warm pink), Suede Splash (caramel brown), Lily Lake (purple-toned pink), Magenta Rush (magenta pink), Brimming Berry (berry pink) and Ruby Ripple (dark red).

They all have a glossy lip balm-like finish.

Ingredients: Diheptyl Succinate, Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil, Capryloyl Glycerin/Sebacic Acid Copolymer, Cera Alba (Beeswax), Candelilla Cera (Euphorbia Cerifera (Candelilla) Wax), Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Behenyl Alcohol, Oleic/Linoleic/Linolenic Polyglycerides, C12-18 Acid Triglyceride, Lanolin, Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil, Cera Carnauba (Copernicia Cerifera (Carnauba) Wax), Moringa Oleifera Seed Oil, Rubus Idaeus (Raspberry) Seed Oil, Sorbitan Tristearate, Glyceryl Caprylate, Aroma (Flavor), Tocopherol, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Oil, Lauroyl Lysine, Citric Acid, Linalool. May Contain [+/-]: Mica, CI 77891 (Titanium Dioxide), CI 75470 (Carmine), CI 77491/CI 77492/CI 77499 (Iron Oxides)

What I liked about Burt’s Bees Lipsticks

Moisturising – These lipsticks are super moisturising. I’ve seen some reviews call them lip balms with more colour, which is exactly how they feel. Even after a few hours of wear, my lips still feel hydrated.

Apply smoothly – Unlike a lot of other natural lipsticks I’ve tried, these glide on smoothly with even colour after a few swipes. More natural brands should try to rip off this formula, because it’s the best natural formula I’ve tried!

Deep colour – The pigmentation is surprisingly good. Both the light and dark shades go on opaque without much difficulty.

What I didn’t like about Burt’s Bees Lipsticks

Fades unevenly – Unfortunately, the colour wears off unevenly, probably due to how hydrating they are. Even pressing my lips together is enough to make it start going patchy.

No lasting power – These come off super quick – an hour or two max, less if you’re eating or drinking anything. Combined with the uneven fading, you’ll want to carry around a mirror and lipstick for touchups.

Unwieldy packaging – I’m not a huge fan of the packaging. It’s lightweight plastic which feels a bit flimsy, and the tube feels a bit too long, especially when the actual lipstick bullet is the standard 3 cm long (the 9 cm tube is 3 times the length of the actual lipstick!). The hexagon honeycomb motif is cute though, and there are handy almost-true-to-colour plastic embellishments and a shade sticker on the outside of the container.

Scaremongering marketing – Burt’s Bees have this little factoid on their site:

Your skin is a sponge. Plain and simple, your skin is your largest organ, and what you put on it gets absorbed into your body. In fact, studies show that 60% of the ingredients get absorbed into your body.

Which is BS. Any introductory physiology textbook (or even Wikipedia) will tell you that skin’s main function is as a barrier, very little can get through it unless it’s compromised, and there are zero studies backing up this 60% absorption claim – no one ever has links to these so-called “studies”! I’ve seen this claim from many “natural” companies, and it honestly kind of worries me. If these companies don’t understand really fundamental skin physiology (or won’t Google for 5 minutes), how can we trust them to understand skin enough to make products that work…?


I liked these lipsticks more than I expected. I particularly liked the deeper colours – my favourites are Scarlet Soaked, Juniper Water and Blush Basin. The need for reapplication is a bit of a pain though. I’ve been wearing these on days when my lips need a bit of a break from drying lipsticks, but I still want to wear colour.

Burt’s Bees Lipsticks retail in Australia at $19.95 for 3.4 g. You can find it in David Jones, or online on the Burt’s Bees website or Amazon.

These products were provided for editorial consideration, which did not affect my opinion. This post also contains affiliate links – if you decide to click through and support Lab Muffin financially, thank you! For more information, see Disclosure Policy.

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22 thoughts on “Burt’s Bees Lipstick Swatches and Review”

  1. I think the deep colours look very lovely.
    I can’t believe they put that statement out. Unfortunately, it does work to convince some buyers. I still read things like ‘use this brands because it contains no chemicals!’ and I shake my head. I think it was like Epsom salts lol.

  2. I love the brand! It’s true the colors don’t hold for that long, but that’s usually a thing with more natural formulas.

    I’ve also been looking for the exact source that backs up the 60% quote. The World Health Organization has labeled the skin as a major entry route for chemicals, but that’s the only quote I’ve been able to find…

  3. Ahh, thank you so much for an honest review. I was expecting the pigmentation to be better because judging from the swatches, they are sheerer than I expected. I’ll be giving these a miss because I hate having to reapply my lipsticks again and again. Shame though, I had high hopes for these.

  4. I did not know Burts Bee’s has that statement on their website! My respect for them was just downgraded to ‘another quasi scientific cosmetic joke of a company’. I agree, if they create their products based on/or alluding to garbage like that, how good can their products even be?!

    • While I appreciate the thoughorness of this review I do not know what science background this person has. As a registered nurse for over 15 years, I can tell you that your skin absolutely is much more than a barrier. Google what medications can be given topically. Blood pressure and pain meds are the first that come to my mind. I also have a progesterone cream that I swear by. Why does skin sweat if it’s merely a barrier? Since your body truly is you largest organ perhaps it would be beneficial to learn all the amazing things it can do, from a legitimate source.

      • I have a PhD in chemistry, and my PhD was on drug discovery… only a tiny tiny fraction of the drug market is in topical and transdermal medications, because skin is a pain to get through. It sweats because it’s the interface between your insides and the environment, and sweat is excreted, it doesn’t come from holes that open to your insides. Read any recent review on transdermal drug delivery and they’ll mention how hard it is to get substances through skin.


        “Despite the large surface area of the skin, it is challenging for compounds including drugs and vaccines to cross the skin in therapeutically relevant amounts.” Source

        “Currently, transdermal drugs are limited in scope to fewer than 20 clinical indications…As the field moves towards more complex drug–device combinations to overcome the natural barrier function of the skin….” Source

        “…research activity is focused on novel approaches that strive to subvert skin’s excellent barrier function, and broaden the range of active species amenable to percutaneous administration.” Source

  5. Just so agree on the scaremongering. Tried Burt’s bees lip balm original with mint and it stung so much I had to wipe off quickly and throw away. Same on the man’s lips.

  6. Your skin actually does absorb lots of of things, chemicals and unnatural ingredients alike. Search on EBSCOE or Pubmed if you don’t believe me. “Skin as an absorption route” Why do you think the lotion doesn’t just SIT on your skin? Perhaps it’s not the “60%” of ingredients. True. That’s vague. But your skin does absorb Volatile Organic Compounds from water every day. The amount of harsh chemicals in MAC makeup and all other sorts of things you put on your skin.

    • If you search “skin as an absorption route”, you’ll be biasing your search towards studies on compounds that *do* penetrate. VOCs are very rare in products because, well, they’re volatile. Essentially if something is over 500 Da it won’t penetrate the skin, and most ingredients in skincare are greater. Look up any dermatology textbook – one of the first things they’ll tell you is that the skin is an extremely effective barrier and it’s difficult to convince most things to pass through.

      “Why do you think the lotion doesn’t just SIT on your skin?” Because most lotions are largely water, which absorbs or evaporates, and most of the remainder either sits on the skin or sinks into the cracks in the dead layer (the stratum corneum), but goes no further.

    • Hahaha! Fair enough! I used to think the same and go for minimalist stuff, but when I empty out my handbag at the end of the week I always find 10 lipsticks in there so I don’t think I’m allowed to use that criteria anymore.

  7. For the first 6 months that I’ve had the Sunset Cruise and Iced Iris lipsticks, I loved them. The colors were great and felt great to wear, although they didn’t last very long. However, now both lipsticks have developed tiny grains of material in the lipsticks. They show when I use the lipsticks and now I have stopped using them. They have never been anywhere except in a room temperature location. I am disappointed in these products. I’d like to know what happened to them. It was a waste of money to buy 2 lipsticks that only lasted 6 months.

      • Mine have done this too, and they’ve never gotten too warm. I live in a house with central air conditioning, and they’ve never been in a room of more than 23 degrees celcius.

        I think whats happening (just my personal hypothesis) is that the oils that are in the lipsticks are not stablized quite as well, and some of them separate into like ingredients. It doesn’t affect the quality of application though, you can still apply them just as well. I just make sure I rub my lips together a little bit more after application to make sure there’s no separation on the lips.

  8. I have a tube of the Russet River color– love the color, but nothing else about this lipstick. The lipstick in the tube always feels clumpy rather than smooth and goes on accordingly. I could only wear it if I applied some Vaseline over it. I finally gave up on it and ordered a Lancôme lipstick that feels creamier and has more staying power.

  9. I have been using these lipsticks for a long time and I never experienced the clumpiness people are talking about. I have many colours too. Nowadays it is so hard to find satin creamy lipsticks that sit so comfortably on your lips like a classic lipstick. Now all the stores are filled with gel-like almost like gloss fruity smelling lipsticks which I could never ever get used to wearing even when I was in my late teens. I hate that they were discontinued in Canada. I love the mat plastic square tube covers. They never come off and don’t feel greasy.


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