Monday, December 9, 2013

Product Worth the Price: Givenchy Hydra Sparkling Magic Lip & Cheek Balm

image from Sephora
The first time I swam in the Mediterranean Sea I was astounded by how clear the water was. Rocks that looked like tiny pebbles from the surface of the water surprised me at their actual, much larger, size. I'll never forget watching a family friend dive down for one and get so much smaller than I expected him to -- I had no idea the pebble-rock was so far away. And the water is so blue! Having grown up swimming in the freezing New England waters, I know how beautiful the landscapes can be to look at while swimming, but I had no idea how beautiful the water could be to look at while swimming.

Of course, that beautiful, clear blue water also has a drawback: Acting as a mirror for the sun. My pale skin has never before, and never after, turned such a bright hot pink shade of sunburn. I quite nearly matched my red bathing suit.

Swimming in the Mediterranean or not, there's a certain shade of blue that embodies dream-like perfect water, and Givenchy's Hydra Sparkling Magic Lip & Cheek Balm is encased in it.

I love the way Benetint gives a stain that can be built up from a natural-looking blush to a darker red on both lips and cheeks, and the long lasting bottle's price cannot be beat. But while it's great in the morning on the way out the door, I'm not wild about carrying around a red liquid in my bag. Not only is it a little heavier than other types of make-up, but even though the bottle is a thick glass, I still worry about it breaking. And when traveling, I worry even more.

Because of this, I usually use Benetint in the morning at home, and toss a non-liquid lip and cheek product into my bag for use during the rest of the day. I like the intuitive lip and cheek stains because they're so easy -- foolproof, really. One can layer a bit on without a mirror, and know that the color is warming up to a perfect shade just for her. No guesswork required.

I've tried several intuitive balms, glosses and sticks, and some are sticky, some need to be re-applied often, and some are too faint a pink for my taste. The one I think is perfect is Givenchy Hydra Sparkling Magic Lip & Cheek Balm. It's a great shade of hot pink in the pot, but when it goes on, it's not a daring color -- just the right shade of bright pink. It also feels nice when it's on -- not sticky, just smooth and hydrating-feeling.
image from Givenchy

Although the price may seem high at $31, mine lasted for over six months even with somewhat obsessive re-applying. I've had many other intuitive lip and cheek products that did not last two months, and I think Givenchy's lasted in part due to its bright color and great ingredients, as it seems to take a little longer to fade and therefore needs less re-applying than I've experienced with other brands.

And besides the practical side, it's just a really pretty product to see in my bag. How can that shade of blue not remind one of swimming in the Mediterranean Sea? It also has a pretty and reflective silver top, and the balm itself is a cheery hot pink. In a way, having the clear blue, the reflection, and the hot pink in my handbag is like being back at the beach on the Mediterranean... But without the pain the sunburn caused.

(I test a lot of products. In order for it to be a Products Worth the Price, it must be an item I've lived with for a while and absolutely will purchase again.)

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