As we begin to see the cold chill of winter in the near future, it’s time to get ahead of one of the more common skin ailments of the season: dry, chapped lips. From ingredients that do more harm than good, to those which will help heal you in even the driest conditions, here are our dermatologist tips for taking care of your lips when winter sets in.
HOW TO PREVENT CHAPPED LIPS
By following these 6 simple tips, you can prevent your lips from getting chapped this season and throughout the year.
1. Avoid Licking Your Lips
This is a tough one, but licking only makes matters worse. Believe it or not, your saliva evaporates quickly, drying your lips out.
2. Use an SPF
Find a lip balm that has sunscreen in it to protect lips from drying under the hot sun, or worse, getting sunburned. You don’t want peeling lips.
3. Say ‘No’ to Flavored Lip Product
Sure, these are fun but you’re way more likely to keep licking your lips when they taste good.
4. Stay Hydrated
This prevention tip is two-fold: For one, drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration. Secondly, use a humidifier at home to keep the air inside moist.
5. Use a Scarf When Outside
If you are planning to brave the elements and it’s a cold, windy day, keep your mouth covered and protected.
6. Be Careful of Allergens
Depending on your skin, you might be more sensitive to certain dyes, fragrances, or perfumes which can irritate your lips. Try and avoid cosmetics with these ingredients: menthol, lanolin, phenol, salicylic acid, propyl gallate, eucalyptus, or camphor. Flavorings including cinnamon, citrus, and mint can also irritate your lips.
HOW TO TREAT CHAPPED LIPS
Your lips are chapped. Now what? First, follow our prevention tips above to avoid making matters worse. Then, use these dermatologist tips to get your lips back to soft and smooth.
Use the Right Ingredients Often
Try applying a lip product that contains one of these lip-healing ingredients: Ceremides, dimethicone, shea butter, white petroleum jelly, beeswax, hemp seed, mineral, coconut, or castor seed oils, or petrolatum. Remember to keep it fragrance-free and hypoallergenic. Don’t forget to apply several times a day and right before bed. These products will keep moisture in to help speed up your recovery.
WHEN TO SEE A DERMATOLOGIST ABOUT CHAPPED LIPS
If within 3 weeks your lips don’t seem to be getting better, it might be time to call your board-certified dermatologist. There could be an underlying condition.