Kosasport LipFuel Hyaluronic Lip Balm
Kosas claims their Kosasport LipFuel Hyaluronic Lip Balm’s “earthy mint scent soothes and energizes,” but in reality, the Mentha Arvensis (spearmint) leaf oil that creates that aroma is an irritant that ultimately makes chapped lips worse. In fact, it’s potent enough to make lips sting/tingle, which is a warning sign that inflammation is taking place.
That’s disappointing considering this balm otherwise contains a beneficial mix of ingredients. The namesake hyaluronic acid comes in the form of sodium hyaluronate, which effectively draws moisture in, while the generous mix of emollients create a protective seal to keep drying elements outs.
Several antioxidant-rich plant oils and butters complement those benefits with protection against environmental stressors. Altogether this provides a plush, comfortably smooth coat for lips, without feeling heavy or greasy, and comes in berry-tinted colors as well as a clear shade.
We do have to mention that this balm’s thin oblong shape makes it a bit trickier to swipe on if you don’t have a mirror handy. Also, the twist-up mechanism of the component doesn’t retract—or at least in our case, it didn’t (it could have been a one-off faulty product).
It boils down to this: Despite Kosas’ attempt to make this a lip product that goes above and beyond, it fails to compete with the best balms out there. Get a more in-depth explanation of the irritating effects via the More Info section below.
- Forms a protective-feeling, comfortably plush barrier.
- Contains some beneficial ingredients to soften and hydrate lips.
- Formulated with an irritating mint-derived oil that ultimately makes chapped lips worse.
- Potent enough to make lips sting or tingle, which is a sign inflammation is taking place.
- Design/packaging issues.
Irritating Ingredients: We cannot stress this enough: Sensitizing, harsh, abrasive, and/or fragrant ingredients are bad for all skin types. Daily application of skincare products that contain these irritating ingredients is a major way we unwittingly do our skin a disservice.
Irritating ingredients are a problem because they can lead to visible problems, such as redness, rough skin, dull skin, dryness, increased oil production, and clogged pores, and they contribute to making signs of aging worse.
Switching to non-irritating, gentle skincare products can make all the difference in the world. Non-irritating products are those packed with beneficial ingredients that also replenish and soothe skin, without any volatile ingredients, such as those present in fragrance ingredients, whether natural or synthetic.
A surprising fact: Research has demonstrated that you do not need to see or feel the effects of irritants on your skin for it to be suffering, and visible damage may not become apparent for a long time. Don’t get lulled into thinking that if you don’t see or feel signs of irritation, everything is OK.
Generally, it’s best to eliminate, or minimize as much as possible, your exposure to ingredients that are known to irritate skin. There are many completely non-irritating products that contain effective ingredients, so there’s no reason to put your skin at risk with products that include ingredients research has shown can be a problem.
References for this information:
Annals of the Brazilian Journal of Dermatology, July-August 2017, pages 521-525
Journal of Dermatological Sciences, January 2015, pages 28–36
International Journal of Cosmetic Science, August 2014, pages 379–385
Clinical Dermatology, May-June 2012, pages 257–262
Aging, March 2012, pages 166–175
Chemical Immunology and Allergy, March 2012, pages 77–80
Skin Pharmacology and Physiology, June 2008, pages 124–135
Food and Chemical Toxicology, February 2008, pages 446–475
American Journal of Clinical Dermatology, 2003, pages 789–798
LipFuel uses an ultra-hydrating, gel-like network of konjac root to anchor spheres of hyaluronic acid on the lips where they get to work sealing in moisture, protecting against environmental damage, and coaching lips to harness their own healing powers. Other natural oils and vitamins join this nourishing treatment team while the earthy mint scent soothes and energizes you into a sport state of mind.
Launched in 2015, Kosas prides itself as a no-fuss makeup line infused with beneficial ingredients. The brand’s founder, Sheena Yaites, says the name Kosas was inspired by the philosophy of the five “kosas” of self: “A physical layer, a vitalizing layer of energy, a sensory mental layer, a discerning intellectual layer, and a layer of truthful bliss.” As she puts it, “Beauty lives in each of these layers, not just in the physical.”
The brand leans heavily into a clean beauty focus, which as they claim utilizes, “the best of molecular biology to create better products that are not only safe and non-toxic, but truly effective and beneficial too.”
While we applaud the concepting behind producing safe, effective products, Kosas tends to veer off course by formulating with fragrant botanicals that haven been proven to irritate skin. On the other hand, they also use some great antioxidants and replenishing ingredients, so it’s truly a mix of good and bad.
While some formulas fare better than others, the actual aesthetics and performance of the makeup tends to live up to the hype, and Kosas’ ethos of “effortlessly applied, flattering across skin tones” products reigns true for the most part.
All in all, Kosas is one of those lines that leaves us with mixed feelings. Judging simply by looks, it’s great. But a deeper dive into the formulas can be disappointing at times.
Check out the individual reviews for the full scoop on each product, and visit kosas.com to learn more about brand.
About the Experts
The Beautypedia team consists of skin care and makeup experts personally trained by the original Cosmetics Cop and best-selling beauty author, Paula Begoun. We’re fascinated by skin care and makeup products and thrilled when they meet or exceed our expectations, but we’re also disappointed when they fail to perform as claimed, are wildly overpriced, or contain ingredients scientific research has proven can hurt skin.
Our mission has always been to help you find the best products for your skin, no matter your budget or preferences. Beautypedia’s thorough and insightful reviews cut through the hype and provide reliable recommendations for all ages, skin types, and skin tones.