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Which lip gloss set is best?

When you want a fresh-faced, glistening look, nothing is as flexible and flattering as a great lip gloss. Since different shades go with different moods and occasions, it’s best to have a selection on hand. A great gloss set gives you options for day and night, with a bit of shimmer thrown in for good measure.

If you’re looking for a high-quality lip gloss set, Babo Botanicals Nutri-Shine Hydrating Luminizer Vegan Lip Gloss 4-Piece Set is the top choice.

What to know before you buy a lip gloss set

Your lip gloss can do a lot of heavy lifting

Gone are the days of goopy, messy hot-pink lip gloss. Today’s lip glosses can serve as hydration, color, plumping and definition for your lips. Day-friendly glosses come in sheer shades that give a hint of color while allowing your natural look to show; shimmery and more color-saturated glosses are the perfect companions for your evening look.  

Simple gloss vs. shimmer

Traditionally, lip gloss just added shine to your lips. You may want to look for a set of glosses that also add a bit of shimmer. It gives you more options when you want your lips to stand out, and works well with summery nighttime vibes. 

What to look for in a quality lip gloss set

Level of pigmentation

Lip glosses come in barely-there clear shades, as well as fully saturated deep colors. For evenings, look for a gloss with a lot of pigment in it in an eye-catching hue. For daily wear, more sheer, light glosses give you a breezy, clean put-together look without making you seem heavily made up. 

Plumping gloss 

Look for a set of lip glosses that includes at least one with a plumping ingredient. Lip plumping glosses don’t just add shine or color, but also contain ingredients that can cause the lips to appear fuller. Some achieve this through a deep moisturizer such as hyaluronic acid, while others contain a mild irritant like capsicum or peppermint, which causes increased blood flow to the area, temporarily making lips fuller.


Lip gloss used to be made with mostly sticky ingredients that didn’t offer a lot to the health of your lips. Today’s glosses are chock-full of moisturizing ingredients that make your skin kissably soft, even after you’ve removed them for the night. If you are plagued by chapped, flaky lips, be sure your lip gloss set includes highly moisturizing ingredients such as beeswax, shea butter or ceramides. 

Flattering to your skin tone

Lip glosses can run the gamut from cool tones to warm, sunny ones. Being aware of your skin’s undertones gives you the tools to buy a lip gloss set whose colors will look awesome on you. If you tend to burn easily in the sun, the chances are good that your skin tone is cool, and will look best in pinks and mauves. If you tan and don’t burn easily, you’re most likely warm-toned, and peaches and rose colored glosses will be the most flattering.

How much you can expect to spend on a lip gloss set

For a good drugstore lip gloss set, expect to pay in the $10-$15 range. A department store brand, particularly one with a plumping ingredient, will range from $20-$40.

Lip gloss set FAQ

Do lip gloss sets expire?

A.  The liquid consistency of lip glosses makes them expire more quickly than other lip care products, such as lipsticks or balms. While you’ll want to check your lip gloss to know for sure, the average life of one is about a year to 18 months.

You’ll know a lip gloss is beginning to reach the end of its usefulness when it clumps or changes color, or its scent changes. Label it with the date you bought it and replace it by the expiration date to prevent applying a gloss that may harbor bacteria or whose ingredients are breaking down.

How do I prep my lips to make lip gloss wear longer?

A. Lip gloss can be a more casual look than lipstick, so if you are going to be on the go all day, expect to have to reapply. But some preliminary work can help it last longer on your lips.

The first order of business is to exfoliate your lips well, gently but thoroughly. You may benefit from a weekly lip mask or a homemade treatment such as a raw sugar and olive oil scrub. Moisturize your lips, unless your gloss has specific emollients or other hydrating ingredients. Then apply your gloss. Finally, a bit of clear lip liner applied to the edge of your lips will keep the gloss from running or feathering.

Is it true that you shouldn’t wear lip gloss after a certain age?

A. You’ve probably heard the rule that mature lips should not wear gloss. This is out-of-date advice that no longer holds, if it ever did. 

The thinking behind this rule was that the fine lines that can form around lips as they age will make lip gloss look feathery and messy as it makes its way in. Good prep will prevent this, as will a clear lip liner, a trick lips of any age will benefit from. In fact, the moisturizing qualities of today’s lip glosses make them a great choice for any age.

What’s the best lip gloss set to buy?

Top lip gloss set

Babo Botanicals Nutri-Shine Hydrating Luminizer Vegan Lip Gloss 4-Piece Set

Babo Botanicals Nutri-Shine Hydrating Luminizer Vegan Lip Gloss 4-Piece Set

What you need to know: This up-and-coming brand takes its ingredients seriously, making sure to source only the purest, all-natural ingredients

What you’ll love: Not only are these colors pretty, they also offer the moisturizing effects of coconut oil, as well as all-natural sun protection to protect your lips.

What you should consider: There’s no plumping option in this set, so if you want a big pout for a night out, this isn’t the set to achieve that.

Where to buy: Sold by Ulta Beauty

Top lip gloss set for the money

Morphe X Avani Gregg Lil Beb Mini Lip Gloss Kit

Morphe X Avani Gregg Lil Beb Mini Lip Gloss Kit

What you need to know: Morphe makes great glosses, and this little kit will give you an option for every mood. 

What you’ll love: This versatile set gives you clear, creamy and shimmery options in buttery, glide-on glosses that aren’t at all sticky.

What you should consider: If you’re sensitive to smells, note that the glosses in this set have pronounced scents. Many users find them pleasant, but you may want to sample one before buying. 

Where to buy: Sold by Ulta Beauty

Worth checking out

Lancome Mini Juicy Tubes Lip Gloss Set

Lancome Mini Juicy Tubes Lip Gloss Set

What you need to know: This premium brand creates glosses that feel light and are highly hydrating. 

What you’ll love: The five tiny glosses in this set range from clear to creamy to shimmery, all with a glassy shine. 

What you should consider: The tubes are designed for direct application onto your lips and don’t provide an applicator. If you’re a stickler for an applicator or don’t like the idea of pressing your lips to the tube, use a swab or buy a pack of disposable applicators. 

Where to buy: Sold by Sephora or Ulta Beauty


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Maria Andreu writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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