For years, I hated roses, and I mean really truly detested the scent. I even started calling rose scents ‘old lady’ and ‘bleurgh,’ both of which are completely unfair and untrue.
Then out of the blue, I managed to fall in like with Crabtree & Evelyn’s Rosewater Hand Therapy, and had to relax my rose-hating philosophy. Want to know what I said in that review?
Yes, it still smells like roses, but for some reason, it doesn’t smell as cloying as some other rose fragrances do. It reminds me of individual rose petals, rather than the whole rose, which for me is quite nice.
What does that even mean?! Clearly, it was my way of saying I have no idea what I’m talking about, so I’m just going to say whatever. Also, I actually do like rose scents.
The rose obsession slowly bloomed (as floral obsessions are wont to do) in the garden…of my mind. By the time Smith’s Rosebud Salve came creeping into my life, I was head over heels for anything rose-related, and this is where our story begins.
Smith’s Rosebud Salve needs no introduction, as it’s one of those items that has a cult following and has been around for ages. I heard the hype all the way back in my rose-hating days, and wasn’t tempted to try it (because I hated roses, you see). But even when I started warming up to the scent, I was still undecided. Too many times, products that generate mountains of hype end up being complete disappointments, and I could easily see Smith’s Rosebud Salve heading down that path. After all, isn’t it basically glorified Vaseline in a tin?
In a sense, it is. Which is why I gobsmacked when it became a handbag staple, so gobsmacked that I had to continue using it until I’d finished over half the tin just to make sure I wasn’t hallucinating. I really like this stuff, you guys.
Why? Because it’s pink? And smells like roses? And comes in cute packaging? (You’ll judge me if I say yes, won’t you?) Alright, it’s partly because of that. But this is a decent lipbalm too. Longtime readers will know that I dislike Vaseline and Aquaphor for my lips. They work in a pinch, but I find that my lips become far too dependent after a few weeks of regular use, and start to dry out. Plus, they feel unpleasant, all thick and goopy.
Smith’s Rosebud Salve is essentially petroleum (with a few oils added in*), but somehow the texture is much more pleasant, as long as I take care not to overapply. The tin packaging doesn’t particularly bother me, as I either apply it with clean fingers first thing in the morning, or like a very-wide-very-flat lipbalm (see Figure 1-a). For those of you who are unwilling to do this, the formula comes in a tube as well. It adds the barest hint of color to my lips, and hasn’t caused any type of petroleum dependency as far as I can tell, although I will add that I alternate this with my sesame oil lipbalm.
*Update: interesting backstory from the lovely peeps at Rosebud Perfume Co:
The essential oils and botanicals are the healing part of the salve and what smells so wonderful. Great Grandfather Smith ordered these oils from Grasse France in 1802 and he mixed and blended them into a Trade Secret formula that has withstood the test of time. Many of the botanicals in the salve are now just being used by companies like Estee Lauder.
The salve comes in a variety of scents and tints, but the classic rosebud flavor is by far my favorite. Go figure.
You can procure Rosebud Perfume Co.’s products from a number of retailers. Both tube and tin cost $6 from Sephora.
Very cute packaging, flexibility of buying either the tin or tube, availability, effectiveness.
I’m not sure whether or not I should complain about the price. On one hand, this is fairly similar to Vaseline. On the other hand, I actually use this on my lips, whereas Vaseline has been relegated to nail art cleanup duty. Plus, I have definitely paid more for HG lipbalms in the past.
Also, this is a petroleum-based product, which I know some people tend to avoid. I used to, until I discovered that one of my favorite balms is petroleum-based. Now I’m wondering if it’s just pure petroleum that wreaks havoc on my lips.
Hasn’t knocked Therapino off it’s HG perch, but I do use this on a regular basis. I will say that I’m still slightly bemused by it’s cult status (it’s a lipbalm, not a pot of magic), but it’s worth a look. Particularly if you like roses. Or if you think you hate roses, but actually love them.
Full Disclosure: The products in this post were submitted for review and consideration. For more information, please see my disclaimer.