By now, you’ve probably heard something of the lip plumping trend – From Angelina Jolie to Jessica Simpson, the sexiest women are the ones with the poofy pouts. You may even have sought out one of the dozens of products designed to help you achieve similar results sans surgery.
Unfortunately, many of the premiere plumping products cost upwards of $30 a tube (Lip Fusion, anyone?). Those glosses are great if you have the spare change lying around, but most of us don’t. For those of you who can relate, I’ve created a list of the best lip plumping glosses under $12.
For a glossy finish, try Sephora’s own plumping gloss, with a cool $10 price tag and handy gloss wand style packaging. It comes in 8 different colors, including a barely there pink and an au natural clear. With natural pepper and mint extracts to do the plumping, it’s as tasty as it is effective. They’re the old standbys of my plumping arsenal, and I always find myself returning when new colors become available. Since they layer well, I’ve also used them to stretch my budget by creating totally new colors instead of buying tubes I may wear just once or twice.
Pop Beauty is another brand that offers plumping solutions for girls who are both beauty and budget conscious. At $12, their “Bee Stung” gloss offers a bright alternative to Sephora’s more toned-down approach. The packaging is cute and short, reminiscent of the pretend makeup kits that toy companies make for children. Their gloss, though, is anything but child’s play. Cinnamon essential oil brings on a pleasant burning sensation that leaves your lips full, moist, and extremely kissable. With five vibrant shades of pink and orange, it’s an excellent choice for warm weather plumping.
My only complaint with Bee Stung is that it seemed to wear off a little quicker than others. I didn’t feel bad for too long, though, because the cute packaging makes me happy every time I see it. Women I don’t even know have asked where I bought my gloss. $12 for big lips and new friends is quite the bargain.
If you miss those fun rollerball applicators from your childhood lip glosses, you shouldn’t pass up “Pump ‘Em Up”, the latest plumping offering from Sugar Cosmetics. In addition to their super secret circulation enhancing ingredients, they also include camphor and menthol to cool you down while you wait for your amazing new lips to emerge. Despite its glossy feel, Pump Em Up offers amazing staying power. Four hours later, my lips were still enormous, and at just $12, you have nothing to lose.
For the truly cheap, I’ve saved the best for last. Physicians Formula has answered your prayers, offering a cinnamon and ginger based plumping pack with four different shades for less than $10. At the miraculously low price of just $7, it’s the cheapest plumper I’ve encountered, save for Jessica Simpson’s Dessert Beauty line in the clearance bins. Physicians Formula does it again, supplying eager cheapskates like myself with several different 4-color compacts, including Nudes, Wines, and Mauves.
Because the Physicians Formula glosses are thicker than regular gloss, they also seem to stay on just a little longer, leaving me with plump lips that didn’t need to be touched up at lunch. The handy palette and built-in mirror make it great for on-the-go application, too, since you don’t need to seek out a bathroom to apply it.
Even if you’re not a cheapskate at heart, you may find yourself joining our ranks. With lip plumping glosses this good, this cheap, there’s really no reason to pay more.