Chapped lips are a common winter annoyance. Exposure to cold temperature and intense winds is a recipe for your skin drying out, especially your most sensitive areas like your lips. Dry lips can be irritating and even painful. Avail Dermatology’s experts explain our top tips for dealing with constantly chapped lips.
Use The Right Lip Balm
While this tip may seem like a no-brainer, there’s a certain way to use lip balm that is more helpful than just reaching for it when you need it the most. Plan to apply it right when you wake up, apply every two hours throughout the day, and finally right before you go to bed.
Also, make sure the lip balm you use is actually helpful. Avoid lip products containing the following ingredients: camphor, menthol, eucalyptus, fragrance, and flavoring. These can burn, sting, and further irritate the lips.
Look for ingredients such as petrolatum, petroleum jelly, shea butter, mineral oil, hemp seed oil, ceramides, and dimethicone. Ensure it also has SPF 30, especially if you go outside, to protect your lips from the sun.
Avoid Excessive Picking, Licking, and Touching Your Lips
If your lips are dry already, picking at the dead skin and irritating them further can worsen your condition. Try your best to avoid touching and picking at your lips. Also, do not lick your lips. While you may think you’re adding extra moisture, saliva exaporates quickly and can leave your lips even more starved for moisture.
When your body is dehydrated, your lips are more prone to dryness so be sure to drink plenty of water.
Improve Your Home Environment
If you spend most of your time indoors, it’s a good idea to work on the air quality in your house. Use a humidifier to add extra moisture to your environment.
When To See Your Dermatology Provider
If your dry lips do not improve with these helpful tips, it may be time to see a professional. Chapped, dry lips that do not heal can be a sign of a skin infection, an allergic reaction, or even a precancerous condition.