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Lip Balm Anonymous Presents the Industry of Addiction


When we contacted Blistex Inc. for information on their company, they sent several items, including recent press releases, and two pamphlets: "The Sun & Your Lips" and "Your Guide to Healthy Lips." Blistex, started in 1947, is now pushing the stuff in over 70 countries around the world, and has been introducing higher-grade lip balm with products such as Blistex Ultra Protection with SPF 30. Their propaganda included all sorts of scare-literature on why you should be using Blistex. They have a self-test to determine if you are at risk from too much sun.

  1. Do you enjoy spending time outdoors? (gardening, walking, biking, etc...)
  2. Do you burn easily when you first go into the sun, and later tan?
  3. Are you fair skinned and/or freckled?
  4. Do you live in a sunny climate or vacation in sunny places?
  5. Do you ski or vacation at high altitudes?
  6. Do you ever get cold sores?

Who doesn't fit into one or more of the categories above? Who doesn't vacation in sunny climates or go skiing at high altitudes? (Duh!) I guess agoraphobics and shut-ins aren't a big market, or the company would try to sell to these people too as they are about the only people who don't qualify.

Blistex Says Ignore the Directions

Packages of Blistex Lip Medex (their Carmex clone) have the instructions "Apply up to 4 times daily." We called Blistex about this and they said that it was because of a Government regulation which says than topical analgesics must have this instruction. But the person at Blistex (who shall remain nameless) said that we shouldn't worry about it as the product is completely safe and that we could use it "as many times a day as we wanted." Can you believe it? The company is explicitly ignoring Federal regulations! Tell your friends and loved ones now to stop using this product more than four times daily (in fact, tell them to quit altogether!). The evil Industry of Addiction must be stopped!

Blistex World's Most Beautiful Lips

Blistex is also turning on teens and other impressionable people by producing their 18th annual list of the World's Most Beautiful Lips.
NEW!! Look! 1998 Winners are Here! NEW!!

Full Version (75K)

Blistex Winners (lip version)

  • Most Mary-able Lips: Cameron Diaz
  • Quickest Lips: David Spade
  • Spiciest Lips: Chef Emeril Lagasse
  • Most ER-resistable Lips: Eric LaSalle
  • Most Screaming Lips: Neve Campbell
  • Most Smashing Lips: Sammy Sosa/Mark McGwire
  • Most Hunted Lips: Matt Damon
  • Most Mask-uline Lips: Antonio Banderas
  • Most Melodiest Lips: Brandy
  • Most Masterful Lips: Mark O'Meara (won Masters)
  • Fairest Lips: Sarah McLachlan (Lillith Fair)
  • Cleanest Lips: Rudolph Giuliani (New York Mayor, tried to clean up city)

Full Version (90K)

Blistex Winners (full version)

The 1998 results are continue the Blistex' tradition. There was an emphasis on actors this year, as movie or television stars took seven out of the twelve spots. Celebrities from the world of sport (Sosa, McGwire, O'Meara) were chosen again; Blistex wants you to think Blistex helped these people to achieve greatness in their sports. This is the same thing Chap Stick did in the 70's with Suzy Chaffee.

Blistex couldn't resist appealing to teens with their choice of Brandy, Damon, Diaz, and Campbell. Truly sad.

The one person missing from Blistex's list is Tiger Woods. What else does he need to do to get the fame and notoriety that Blistex looks for. If I was Tiger I'm not sure I would be happy or sad about missing out on the Blistex list.

Do you see how Blistex is taking some of our most popular celebrities and using their good names to sell this junk to our kids? This is especially tragic since these stars are not being compensated for their names being used, but still giving the impression that it is cool to use lip balm. It is an obvious ploy to capitalize on today's famous stars, since more appropriate choices such as Steven Tyler (of Aerosmith) or Barbara Hershey haven't ever made the list!

Agents of LBA have obtained a complete list of award winners going back to 1980. We used the terminology that Blistex uses for most of the entries, although did provide some annotations. The list is available in two formats (your browser must support tables):

  1. Winners Alphabetically
  2. Winners by Year

The list is an interesting study of popular culture. For example, several couples (or former couples) have made the list: Daryl Hannah and John F. Kennedy Jr., Maria Shriver and Arnold Schwarzenegger, Demi Moore and Bruce Willis, Liz Taylor and Richard Burton, and Lady Diana and Prince Charles. The last three Presidential couples have also all made the list.

There are quite a few athletes on the list. In fact, Michael Jordan has been named to the list a record three times! Interestingly, tennis seems to be the most popular sport. There are very few pertinent choices on the list. Nancy Kerrigan looks like someone who might have chapped lips due to exposure to cold climates, but where are the skiers or other winter athletes?

Most shocking, however, is the lip balm drug connection! Stars such as John Belushi, Boy George, Don Johnson, Jennifer Capriati, John DeLorean, and Dwight Gooden all made the Blistex list and had then subsequent drug problems. Did lip balm serve as a "gateway" to hard drugs for these stars? What about Belushi's untimely death? Was it a heroin-cocaine speedball or an overdose of Carmex? Unfortunately, we may never know!

Last updated on January 15, 1999
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