When it comes to bundling up during the winter, our lips are the last part of our body we’re thinking of protecting. Yet, given their tendency to dry out ten times faster than the rest of our skin, it’s time we show them a little TLC. The thin, delicate skin on our lips can be easily agitated, and dry chapped lips are no fun. So, I’ve put together a few tips to help treat, or prevent, them from flaking and cracking this winter.
Always use a lip balm.
Licking your lips when they’re feeling dry–or ever, is a huge no! Unless you’re LL Cool J, and even then I’m side-eyeing you, this shouldn’t be a solution. When we lick our lips it may seem like a quick fix, but actually makes the dryness worse. Not to mention, due to the enzymes found in saliva–that are meant for breaking down food, you can experience irritation.
Use lip balms with nourishing and healing ingredients.
Not all lip balms are created equal. Some require constant application and can leave your lips feeling dryer than before. When looking for a lip balm that actually works, make sure it contains ointment-like ingredients such as petrolatum or glycerin. Also, ingredients such as shea butter, moringa oil, beeswax, dimethicone, or essential oils are great for boosting your lip’s hydration.
Drink lots of water.
Hydrating your body with water isn’t only for the summer months. Making sure to stay consistent in your water intake year-round is key in maintaining moisturized skin.
Don’t peel or bite off the cracked skin on your lips.
This only makes things worse, and much more painful. This also isn’t the best time to scrub them either. It’s important to first coat heavily dry lips with a thick layer of ointment-based balm to help soothe and soften the area. Once they are, then you can..
Use a gentle lip exfoliator.
Using a gentle all-natural scrub can help get rid of dead skin cells and improve the effectiveness of hydrating lip products.
Switch to cream or satin lipstick.
I love a good matte lip just like anyone else, but when you’re experiencing dryness it’s time to take a break. During the winter months or when your lips are feeling chapped, swap them out for a creamier more hydrating lipstick.
If you have a cold sore or blister, use a medicated balm.
Sometimes the problem is worse than simply dry chapped lips. In the event that you see a cold sore or blister, it’s time to consult a medical professional. They’ll be able to guide you through next steps and prescribe a medicated balm to help treat the area.
Here are some top-rated products that’ll help keep your lips in order this winter:
Sara Happ The Lip Scrub ($24)
Kiehl’s Lip Balm #1 ($10)