It is no exaggeration to say I've had a tube of Glossier's Balm Dotcom in my left pocket every day for six years. This product has reached the same level of importance as my phone, wallet, and keys. It's that good. However, even though I love the flavors, it's easy to go blind to them throughout the day. That is until someone points them out.
I've kissed a lot of dudes over the years, and the remnants of flavored Balm Dotcom always catch them by surprise. They always have to say something about it. It's a cute, disarming moment for both of us. This Valentine's Day, I'm taking a walk down memory lane and highlighting all of the endearing (and sometimes dumb) things boys have said to me while I was wearing each Balm Dotcom flavor. Keep scrolling to read them all.
Birthday Balm Dotcom
Riley would come into the bar I was working at with his friends about once a week. He was about 6'4" and always wore a baseball cap low over his eyes. All I could see was his strong chin covered in scruff and his big, goofy grin. His friends would always leave earlier than him, and he'd stay and have one more beer while we chatted.
I don't know how it happened, but it went from him walking me home from the bar at three in the morning to him ending up in my bed at three in the afternoon. I had applied the Birthday Balm Dotcom this night, which smells like confetti cake and sugary vanilla frosting. We were in the middle of my apartment, with sunlight pouring through the windows on every side.
I was standing on my toes and still barely reaching his lips. His long, gangly arms slung around my waist to stop me from rocking back and forth. When he looked at me, he said, "You always smell like candy, and you taste like cake. Everything about you is so sweet—except your attitude."
This didn't come as a huge surprise to me because, after all, he was right. We never saw eye to eye (not just because of the height difference). I learned someone could like kissing you without actually liking you as a person. This should be avoided at all costs for everyone's sanity. Riley and I never stood a chance, but I always thought what we had was sweet.
Coconut Balm Dotcom
Zeke and I always saw the same thing in two different ways. However, there was a strong magnetism between us. Once we started something, we couldn't stop it. We were like two sticks of dynamite just looking for a match.
One afternoon, I absentmindedly applied the Coconut Balm Dotcom. A while later, we were all over each other in his bedroom. He kissed me and said, "You taste like truffles."
I snapped back in shock and yelled, "The fungus?"
His eyes rolled back in his head, "No, Tynan. Like the chocolate."
I could see where he got that. To me, Coconut Balm Dotcom tastes sweet, milky, warm, and almost salty. But to Zeke, it was rich, creamy, and dark. See what I mean? We always saw the same thing completely differently.
Rose Balm Dotcom
I always date guys that drink gin and too much of it. I served Carter gin and tonics for months on end, all the while thinking he wasn't very attractive. Until one day, I realized I was very attracted to him. Then, I asked for his number.
When I was getting ready for our date, I grabbed Rose Balm Dotcom. It's not my favorite flavor, but I slathered it onto my lips. I thought: Gin is floral. This is floral, and it'll be perfect.
It was one of those dates you tell yourself went well, but deep down, you know it was bad. I walked him home, kissed him goodnight, and when we pulled away, he said, "You sort of taste like perfume."
I asked, "In a good way?"
He stuttered, "I'm not sure."
Obviously, if someone isn't "sure" about you, you shouldn't wait around for them to make up their mind. It was a hard pill to swallow at the time because everything is complicated when you have a crush. But, it's a lesson I've forced myself to learn over and over again since. I should have known from the minute I grabbed the Rose flavor this was all wrong.
Mint Balm Dotcom
I met Royce late one evening. And let's just say it was never supposed to be more than a one-night thing. He was in town for a night and had this important job, so he flew around the country a lot. We somehow happen to end up in the same city more often than makes sense. Sometimes he comes to visit me in New York.
The first time we met, he pulled back and looked at me quizzically.
"You taste familiar," he said.
We didn't give it much thought at the moment as we were distracted. But as I was washing my hands in his hotel bathroom later that night, I saw a Mint Balm Dotcom laying on his sink. I called out to him, nodded to his balm, and whipped a tube of my own out of my pocket.
"Oh wow, look at that. We're so alike," he joked. "It must be meant to be."
I see Royce every once in a while—sometimes when I'm expecting to, but mostly it's last minute. I don't know if it's on purpose, but every time I see him, he's got a tube of Mint Balm Dotcom in his pocket, on his sink, or the nightstand in his hotel. It always feels familiar, and sometimes that's enough.
Cherry Balm Dotcom
Andy was this elusive hot stoner that was constantly slipping through my fingers. He had this youthful quality, which didn't match his physique. He had broad shoulders, big arms, and overall muscular stature. He was a baker, throwing trays of dough around all day, and always had a little flour on his nose after work.
As we were wobbling home from having one too many whiskeys on a freezing Wisconsin night, we stumbled into a doorway alcove and found ourselves making out. It was so cold our breath turned to fog as our mouths were crashing together, but we didn't care.
The Cherry Balm Dotcom had just come out, and I had thrown it in my pocket before leaving my place. I knew I'd be drinking whiskey all night and thought the Cherry might feel like a garnish against the burn of the alcohol.
He pulled away just far enough to move his lips. "You taste like the cherry chapstick I used to wear when I was a kid," he whispered.
This was both endearing and irritating, as men who are too in touch with their inner child usually are. I should have known I would never get more than this out of him. Granted, I wasn't looking for anything more at the moment, but I wouldn't have hated to have been more than his childhood chapstick.
Berry Balm Dotcom
The Berry Balm Dotcom is intense—and so was John. He and I were one of those too much, too fast, and too soon sort of things. However, there's a passionate romance that's always wrapped up in relationships like that.
One summer afternoon, we were walking out of my place, and I was carelessly smearing Berry all over my lips when he asked for a little. Of all the flavors, Berry is the most pigmented.
Many boys apply beauty products like it's their first day on Earth with hands. John cautiously used it like it could burn him at any second.
"Are my lips purple now?" he asked.
"No, John, it's lip balm. You can't even tell you're wearing it," I replied.
"Are you sure?" he questioned, squinting at me suspiciously.
John was always suspicious. And I guess I had given him reason to be, so it's not like I'm infallible here. If your relationship has you second-guessing a lip balm, it's probably time to put the whole thing on ice.
Mango Balm Dotcom
When Mango Balm Dotcom came out, I was in New York City for a job interview. I eventually got the job and moved here.
I stopped at Glossier's store in SoHo to pick it up in person because I had a little extra time on my hands before the interview. With pre-interview jitters and the prospect of the potential move on my plate, I was very anxious.
The interview went well, and afterward, I went to a bar to grab a beer. I don't often go to bars alone, but it was close to the weekend, and I was alone in New York City, so I figured why not.
I met Charlie at the now-defunct Boxers, and we hit it off. It was the kind of electricity you only feel at a late-spring happy hour when the weather is just starting to warm up. Long story short, we were in the elevator back up to my hotel room, and he pulled away from me, saying, "You taste like oranges."
"Mango," I replied.
"Whatever," he said, getting right back to where we were.
It was cute and casual. Honestly, it was what I needed at the time. Sometimes, you just need to go to the bar and make out with a cute guy. Don't tell my therapist I said that.
Cookie Butter Balm Dotcom
I had been on a handful of dates with Elliot. We had dinner at this hole-in-the-wall French restaurant in the East Village one night. This was followed by some stolen kisses in the falling snow on the way to a burlesque show. By the time we were seated, my lips were dry.
As I returned from the restroom, I slathered on a bit of the newest Balm Dotcom flavor, Cookie Butter. I was excited about Cookie Butter when it launched because it was the type of flavor I liked: sweet and spicy. It was great, but not what I was expecting.
When I got back to my seat, Elliot planted one on me before the next act started.
"Did you put on chapstick in the bathroom?" he asked through a hazy grin.
"Something like that," I replied.
"You taste like gingerbread. I like it," Elliot said.
I never really decided if I liked the scent (I think it's too close to Coconut). But because I now attach it to him, I have a soft spot for it. The scent and the guy are new to me, and I'm still trying to figure both of them out.
Wild Fig Balm Dotcom
I was taking off my makeup as Aaron went through my perfume collection. It was three in the morning, and he accompanied me home from a bar.
I'm pretty strict about only dating people around my age, and Aaron was much younger than I'd go for. But this certainly wasn't a date. We both knew it wasn't anything serious, and he had this confidence about him that I thought was hot.
I put my nighttime skincare product on and took my clothes off. Before we knew it, we were in my bed beneath the light of my cloud light fixture.
He pulled his mouth away from mine for a second. He said, "Are you wearing lip gloss in bed?"
"It's lip balm. Chill out," I laughed.
He squinted at me and said, "You taste like strawberries."
"It's fig, but close enough," I replied.
There's something so fun about having chemistry with someone who you're not trying to pursue. Aaron and I always had a great time because there were no expectations, and we could always be honest with each other.
Through this, I've learned love comes in all forms. Some relationships last a while, and some last for a lifetime. And some are just for a night (okay, this was a few nights, but you get what I mean.) And some relationships, some of the best, aren't romantic at all.