Lip crayons are now most definitely ‘A Thing’: bigger and fatter than Crayolas, and a really viable alternative to lipstick. Like Crayolas, however, they’re incredibly easy to use – in most cases, they can be applied without even looking in a mirror. The one caveat? As with any kind of lip pencil, if they’re not the twist-up type they must be sharpened before the tip becomes so blunt that it’s down to the wood – otherwise this can really scratch the lip area. So: if your lip crayon isn’t a twist-up, and doesn’t come with a sharpener, buy one – and keep it somewhere handy. (Ideally not in your make-up bag, because stray crayon shavings left on the blade can really mess up your kit.) With quite a few lip crayons to choose from today, we dispatched a selection to our testers – and these put the biggest smile on their faces.


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GOLD AWARD – Bobbi Brown Art Stick

Boy, this is chunky. You probably can’t tell from the photo, but it’s really pretty mahoosive – and whatever you do, don’t lose the sharpener for this one because you’ll never find another to fit. (And as the website points out, these sharpeners are not sold separately.) It’s formulated with shea butter, among other emollients, to nourish lips; with a creamy, quite thick but matte formula, Art Stick – which also previously won a Woman & Home Best in Beauty Award for Best Lip Crayon – comes in eight shades. The particular one we sent to testers was Rose Brown, which is a true neutral that would suit anyone, but other shades span brightish pink to Harlow Red (a siren-like scarlet). It really is a lipstick in big, fat pencil form, this one. Bobbi Brown advise that you can use the point of the pencil to line lips (so you’ll want to keep it relatively sharp), and hold the angled edge of the pencil flat against the lips to fill in with colour.


'I really enjoyed using this lip crayon.  I’ve never used a pencil before but it’s so easy to use, simply line with the point bit then fill in, or else just swipe over the lips if you’re in a hurry. The pencil format also made it easy to transport' • 'I loved this colour and found the crayon more precise in terms of application than lipstick or lip gloss (which I normally use). It came without its own sharpener, which is a very nice feature as I wouldn't have had a chunky-sized sharpener of my own. I liked that you can use it as lip liner as well as colour' • 'I really liked this and it could persuade me away from my usual lip gloss (I don't wear lipstick as it's often too greasy and doesn't stay put, or stays put and dries my mouth). This is a lovely texture, smooth but not greasy or drying. It’s easy to apply and feels nice on. A couple of people did comment on how much it suited me even thought is not a colour I would usually wear' • 'Love this product, which glided on with no pulling. The colour suited my skin tone and the stick was just so easy to use. It provided a matte colour that lasted far longer than my usual lipstick, and wasn’t tacky or shiny. I loved the look of it on' • 'It looks thick and luxurious and really made my lips look fuller and more defined. It promises gorgeous creamy colour that lines and fills in lips – and I certainly think it delivers this, albeit it isn’t quite as long-lasting as I would like – I had to reapply every couple of hours to keep up the coverage. (I would say this isn’t really a surprise, as nothing lasts that well on my lips)' • 'I absolutely loved using this wonderful richly pigmented product. It has a number of conditioning agents but it doesn't feel greasy – just leaves my lips feeling plumped and hydrated. I loved that it did that but that the finish was matte velvet – how does she do that??!  It's the best lip crayon I have ever used.'

£21.50 - click to buy


SILVER AWARD – Bagsy Wow Lip Chubby Stick

One of several wins for British make-up brand Bagsy in these Awards, this is a more sheer product than the Bobbi Brown winner, with a sheen-y finish – a more akin to a gloss, in a pencil form. The high comfort factor is down to a ‘nylon and spherical powder formula’, so we’re told – meaning it hugs the lips and moves with them, for a can’t-tell-it’s-there feel. The high impact, moisturising colour is available in four shades (including a bright red), but the shade we sent out to 10 testers for our trials was 02 Happy Days. 


'Love this three-in-one – liner, lipstick and blusher for the price of one lip product. I would definitely buy again. – and the funky packaging would make it a nice present, too. It's much more creamy and moisturising than my usual very high-end lipstick and stays put after a cup of coffee. I use it on my cheeks and it lasts for half a day. I’m very impressed' • 'A really pretty, chubby stick which is easy to apply. I liked the motto on box: "I lnow I’m not perfect by my lips look fabulous". I particularly liked the twist- up pencil. It applies smoothly, gives good coverage and has a nice creamy texture and good pigment' • 'A perfect, lovely, chunky pencil, which is so easy and quick to use – no precision needed. Felt more like a lip balm, moisturising, soft and rich. It promises a hit of moisturising colour and completely lives up to that – long-lasting too. Great product overall, doesn't bleed, feels light-to-wear – exactly like a lip balm – and I love the packaging. Because it's a fat pencil, you can put it on without a mirror, too' • 'I like the light fruity fragrance and the soft, silky texture, which made my lips feel moisturised.  The semi-gloss finish looked quite subtle and natural looking. It lasted about three hours, which is average for me, and I loved the colour' • 'This wouldn't usually be my colour – but it worked when I was tarted up to the nines (and the boy liked it, so all good). Softer lips than with traditional lippy and it lasted brilliantlyt.  I’m a smoker/drinker so that's really positive. I’m now using it on my cheeks too, as its better than my blusher.'

£12 - click to buy

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BRONZE and BEST NATURAL AWARDS – Burt’s Bees Lip Crayon

If you’re looking for a natural lip crayon, this twist-up option is your baby – and we’re already fans at Beauty Bible. The good-enough-to-eat (or at least, good-enough-to-lick-off-your-lips) formula features shea butter, jojoba and kendi oils, and feels nourishing, while the finish is ‘creamy-matte’ – neither matte, nor glossy – and supremely comfortable. This is a previous award-winner, having impressed beauty industry insiders and scooped Best New Makeup Product for Lips in 2016’s CEW Awards. There are six shades; our lot got Hawaiian Smoulder – a suits-all-skintones deep rose – and here are their thoughts.


'I really enjoyed using this. The long crayon and solid nature of the product made it easy to apply and it went on really smoothly. The moisturising texture felt light on my lips, but gave strong colour. I liked the fact I was putting on lip balm as the same time as colour. My lips look great with it on, shiny, nourished and moisturised and it lasted well' • 'I really really liked this versatile lip crayon, which is very good value, looked great on and is moisturising enough for me not to need to put lip balm on beforehand, which I usually do. I wore it on a night out recently and got lots of compliments – so a few friends are now trying it too. Big thumbs up to this product!' • 'Love this! The colour was perfect; it was easy to apply to look natural and most importantly didn't dry out my lips as so many lip products do. It’s not as thick as normal lipstick and although it’s quite creamy, it’s not sticky or gloopy like a gloss – maybe a bit more waxy...?  It gave a natural colour and definition without looking I’m trying too hard.  It lasted a few hours, which to be honest is better than most lipsticks for me.' • 'Top marks. I really loved this product and can’t wait to buy it in other colours too. It was so rich and soft, also very smooth; ,y lips felt soft and I loved the look. It lasted all day; I did top up at lunchtime but it didn't actually need it. You could sharpen it although it doesn't come with its own sharpener.  My lips felt more cared-for' • 'This delivers a sheer, hydrating coat of colour that looks very pretty and is perfect for a no-make-up day. I liked the formula very much; it feels as though my lips are being nourished.  It is like using a “posh” lip balm.'

£6.03-£6.69 - click to buy