TATCHA GOLD Camellia Nourishing Lip Balm: A Touch of Elegance for Your Lips

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Not every lip balm deserves a dedicated review, but TATCHA GOLD Camellia Nourishing Lip Balm makes you want to write songs about it… or at least a haiku.

“Soft lips, like petals,
shimmer on a snowy day.
Camellias in bloom.”

I hope those of you who are literary majors forgive my lack of experience in this genre [last part has 6 syllables instead of 5], but it just came from the heart, and isn’t that what poetry is all about? Camellias bloom in Winter when most other flowers are dormant, and can survive in pretty harsh conditions. This evergreen shrub grows in some of the most remote locations in Asia, including the Himalayas, so it’s well prepared for whatever hardships Mother Nature throws at it. It is this unique quality to persevere no matter what while producing big, bright, and delicate flowers that made camellia oil one of the most kept secrets of ancient geisha skincare rituals, that were recorded 200 years ago in an ancient manuscript, which remained unseen until very recently. To decipher the rituals and ingredients from this text TATCHA team traveled to Kyoto to work with teams of scientists, scholars and even modern day geisha.

Each full-size skin care purchase from TATCHA will provide one day of school and support to a girl enrolled in Room to Read’s Girls’ Education program.

TATCHA GOLD Camellia Nourishing Lip Balm – packaging reminds me of drawers

TATCHA GOLD Camellia Nourishing Lip Balm – delicate leaflet made of pure 24K gold

TATCHA GOLD Camellia Nourishing Lip Balm – unboxed

TATCHA GOLD Camellia Nourishing Lip Balm – golden flecks

TATCHA GOLD Camellia Nourishing Lip Balm – jar packaging

What is luxury? I would say it’s a “beautiful unnecessary”, and people who buy luxury products don’t mind paying a little extra [or a lot, it depends] for aesthetics and potentially more exclusive formulas and ingredients. For instance, the packaging and presentation of this lip balm is just on a whole other level from anything else I’ve tried. Upon opening the box, you discover a small sliding drawer, containing the actual product, which is wrapped in a lovely sheet of ivory rice paper with written instructions; while the balm itself is housed in a thick glass jar.

When you open the jar, the first thing that stands out is a sheet of pure 24K yellow gold [a real gold leaf, and not one of those edible foils that people decorate cakes with] hand placed there by TATCHA skincare professionals, resting on a solid balmy cushion. It’s not just for decoration though, although I must admit, it definitely adds a certain level of sophistication to such basic product as a lip balm. The trick is to try and mix it together with the balm for a subtle hint of sheen.

The formula is very comfortable on the lips, it’s neither sticky nor tacky, and really feels more like a primer. It also doesn’t make the lips look wet or greasy, so it’s suitable for both men and women. The wear time is great, I get a solid 6 hours of wear before I have to reapply, even after I drink a few cups of tea. Squalane [derived from olive oil] tops the ingredient list making this lip balm a fabulous moisturizer for the lips, which actually heals the skin and improves the condition over time.

Camellia Nourishing Lip Balm is a beautiful product, inside and out. It primes, repairs and moisturizes my lips, while providing lasting comfort and subtle natural sheen. Since it comes in jar packaging, there is a risk of cross-contamination from constant finger-dipping, but I’m hoping to use it up before it gets too “dirty”.

$36 USD for 0.28 oz. Available at Tatcha, Barney’s.

Squalane (Olive Origin), Dimer Dilinoleyl Dimer Dilinoleate, Dextrin Palmitate, Fragrance (Natural), Dextrin Palmitate/Ethylhexanoate, Polyglyceryl-10 Pentaisostearate, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Germ Oil, Camellia Japonica Seed Oil, Water, Stearyl Glycyrrhetinate (Licorice Extract), Oryzanol (Rice Bran Oil Extract), Hydrogenated Lecithin (Soy Origin), Inositol (Rice Extract), Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract, Alcohol, Glycerin, Algae Extract, Gold.

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