So, as for the lip balm.
Honey Pie Hives & Herbals ~ Chai
This spicy treat was purchased on a vacation to Sand Banks and Prince Edward County, Ontario. I'm pretty sure it was from the Bean Counter Café but it has been a while and I forget. So this isn't really a new favourite, but rather a tried-and-true old favourite. It's light, fragrant, spicy and smooth. I've had my little pot for a while now (I hardly ever use up a lip balm, since I have so much of the stuff... which is sort of wasteful of me) and it still smells and feels great. Not that I recommend holding onto it for a long time. I recommend using it up and then trying other flavours like Fennel, Cinnamon Hearts, or Rosemary! Maybe I will have to go on another vacation. Actually I don't have to go that far, their wares are sold right here in Montreal, and I plan to go scout out that café very soon. Not just for lip balm either, I wouldn't mind some beeswax candles or trying out their loose leaf teas. But I still think I should go on vacation.
I got these at the Jean-Coutu so I am betting that they are more widely available than the others I'm mentioning. The Vanilla Fig one is pretty good, but it does have a kind of shimmery white-lip thing going on, which I don't always (ever?) want. It is subtle though. I wouldn't classify this as lip gloss or anything. Still, the Honey version is a lot nicer. It really is a lip balm, no other secret sparkly agendas. The smell reminds me of the Burt's Bees Honey Lip Balm (not their original pepperminty one, which is what started my whole thing with lip balm in the first place, but this one). They both smell good, almost floral (like you can smell the flowers that made the honey or something) but the Burt's Bees one has a rough, crumbly texture that I've never really liked. This one has a perfectly smooth texture, so it is the winner. In the honey-flavoured lip balm contest. Incidentally I also tried the Vanilla Fig hand lotion, which feels nice, but is a little perfumy for me. Even though it's all NATURAL! and paraben-free etc, I still wouldn't use it around my (asthma-prone) mother.