Burt’s Bees: Lip Balm

Upclose photo of lips with lip balm being applied.

Upclose photo of lips with lip balm being applied.This company sent me an e-mail with a link to their website where I could research on my own. Of course, my method is to research first and then contact when I cannot find any useful information, so this was aggravating.

The link they sent was not helpful either, as the FAQ doesn’t mention gluten at all. I have noticed some grocery stores (ex: Kroger) putting gluten free stickers in front of some Burt’s Bees products, but I don’t know how they are sure they are safe, unless the labels have since been updated to specify they are gluten free.

I did try one of their lip balms that had been marked with a gluten free sticker, and it made my lips burn for hours – something I’ve never had happen from gluten. It turned out to be lanolin, which I’m allergic to, but wasn’t listed on the little tube. They make it super difficult and time consuming to determine full ingredient lists. They only want to tell you “key” ingredients. Not all of them. This alone is a red flag — especially now that I’m more experienced in living gluten free.

As of 13 March 2020, their website states:

I am gluten-restricted. What products are appropriate for my use?

We cannot provide a list of Burt’s Bees products that are safe for use with your allergy because our products may have been manufactured on a shared line with products containing gluten, or raw materials used in our products may have been processed in a facility that also processes products containing gluten.

Therefore, we are unable to state that any Burt’s Bees products are “gluten-free.” Several of our products are known to contain certain allergens, because raw materials that contain or are made from the allergen are intentional ingredients in those products.

Please carefully review the ingredient list of any product prior to use, particularly because the listed ingredients for a product may change. If you have a known allergy to gluten, you should always consult with your physician if you have questions regarding whether it is safe for you to use a particular product.

Basically: Nothing is safe, but we don’t want to come out and say that because then you’ll shop elsewhere. And the CYA statement about going to your physician gets old super fast. Except for the super rich, who can afford to see their doctor (many of whom are ignorant about gluten and Celiac Disease anyway) about each new product they want to try?!

I cannot recommend any of Burt’s Bees – lip balms or otherwise. 


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