Lip Smacker lip balms are a surefire way for me to transport myself to my youth without ever leaving the here and now. When I was first allowed to wear makeup, my mom said yes to Revlon's black eyeliner, Apricot Fantasy lipstick, and to wearing Lip Smacker lip balms when I was 12 or 13. I'm not sure why Revlon liner and lipstick were allowed. Maybe my mom was progressive? The Lip Smackers, however, would have just been cruel to deprive me of.
Since I wanted to hurl myself into the past, but not with Apricot Fantasy, and since I am without any sort of access to a time machine, I decided to taste my nostalgia for a simpler time, when nothing mattered as much as I thought it did, by wearing Lip Smackers delish flavored lip balms and glosses for a week. I didn't make use of any other balms, glosses, or lipsticks. Just the Smackers.
To my delighted surprise, there were still so, so many options when I hit the Rite Aid down the street to select my flavors and shades. It was almost overwhelming. I went with the soft drink flavors, since those were thehip balm flavor to throw in your tiny little purse in the '90s.
I admit it was hard to skip the Skittles-branded assortment but I did... for now.
Here's what happened when I wrote Lip Smacker balms, a signpost of youth, for seven days straight.
Sensory. Overload. I wanted to taste and smell every flavor, so I did. I uncapped them all and I swiped on Vanilla Coke and went down the line through the grape and orange Fanta flavors. I kept applying and reapplying the Dr. Pepper and classic Coke varietals. When I woke up the next morning, well, my lips felt a bit chapped. In May. I probably overdid it, but, oh my gosh, it was worth it.
The flavors started to mess with my head and appetite a little at this point. A Coke-flavored Lip Smacker tastes a lot like Coke. Totally like Coke. It was making me want to head over to Burger King to grab a cola-flavored frozen slushie. I was left wondering what a Diet Coke-flavored Lip Smacker might taste like. And would Taylor Swift, Diet Coke spokesmodel, use it? Give it as party favors for her next big hang with Haim, Lorde, and Selena Gomez?
I kept applying and reapplying the Dr. Pepper roller ball gloss, which I also bought mostly because it was cute. It made my lips way shiny for a minute, but it didn't last. I wanted super wet shine and I got it, but proceeded to lick it off too quickly. So I reverted to the balms the following day.
I am not a big soda drinker by any means, but when I do, I go for Sprite. By day four, I was still completely baffled by how the magicians at Bonne Bell managed to mimic the effect of drinking a Sprite almost exactly in a tiny tube of balm. I swear I think my lips felt some effervescence when I applied it.
I wore the Vanilla Coke Lip Smacker outside at a music festival in Asbury Park and found myself repeat applying in the muggy weather. I was even topping it off with the Dr. Pepper gloss because the taste was a sweetness explosion. It was all colorless, but smelled divine. As I suspected, someone I work with in my day job as a music publicist planted a hello smooch on the side of my lips and said, "What's that sweet smell?" I told him that it was Vanilla Coke lip balm and he was like, "I gotta get some for my girl!" Lip Smackers, feel free to hire me as a marketing guru whenever.
I was sitting on the floor of my bedroom, cleaning out my Alexander Wang Rockie bag, when Higgins, my bulldog, came charging into the room to see what I was doing. As is customary, he sniffed through the contents that were spilled on the floor and zoned in on the three Lip Smackers balms and gloss I was toting. Yes, he licked the tube — and appeared to approve. Meanwhile, my lips were soft and I found myself so aware of them because of the taste and smell. I used the Barq's Root Beer flavor so much I nearly wore it down to a mushy nub.
And on the seventh day, she rested. I was feeling a bit addicted to the flavor and the scent. My lips felt super softened and I wasn't licking as much so I was no longer creating a chapped situation. I rocked Cherry Coke for the final day of Lip Smacker Week and then decided to take a break from wearing Lip Smackers for a few days, for no other reason than I like to switch it up. I'm sure I'll be back to my faux soda-y habits in no time at all.
Images: Amy Sciarretto (7); roadsidepictures/Flickr