Just because your mouth is covered by a mask most of the time, that doesn’t mean you should sacrifice your lip care routine. Especially now that it’s spring, your lips may need extra attention to recover from the cold winter months. The chilly air, wind, and heated indoor spaces typically leave our lips dry, tight, or even cracked. Dermatologist Melissa Piliang, MD told the Cleveland Clinic academic medical center that “the cold weather has a significant effect on our body, and that includes our lips. Lips are a special type of skin that is very thin and delicate, which means they really do require some extra TLC.” Swiping on some chapstick might seem like a no-brainer cure-all, but oftentimes (and without our knowing) it is not enough.
With so many products, Instagram at-home remedies, and treatments to choose from it’s easy to get overwhelmed and place lip care on the backburner. But achieving healthy, hydrated, and fuller looking lips doesn’t actually have to be so hard, or expensive. Check out this complete guide of tips and at-home tricks to maximize the maintenance of your mouth.
Fragrances from essential oils, like peppermint (pictured above), add cosemtic appeal to chapsticks, but do more harm than good to your lips. In a paper published by The American Academy of Dermatology, Doctor Walter G. Larson explained that added fragrances are in fact the largest cause of allergic reactions and contact dermatitis (rashes). The Food and Drug Administration even requires that labels on scented cosmetic products read “fragrance,” to hep customers stear clear of potentially irritating ingredients. Peppermit oil, like other scented components may be naturally derived, but the cooling or tingling feeling it provides (which many customers like) is actually a sign of irritation. The chilly sensation creates the illusion that your lips are being hydrated, while actually drying them out.
Use Lip Balm With SPF
The skin on your lips is different from the skin on the rest of your body. Lips are made up of only three to four outer layers of skin, a lot less than the average 15-16 layers that cover most other bodyparts. Skin regeneration is also slower on your mouth because the skin on your lips contain far less melanin, which protects against sun damage. For these reasons and many more, you should be making sure your lip balm includes SPF or is at least accompanied by it throughout the day. You might be thinking this is unnecessary because you’ll be wearing a mask outside this spring and summer, but what about all those outdoor meals? When you go for a run? When it comes to SPF, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Some products to try include MD Solar Sciences Hydrating Sheer Lip Balm with SPF 30 for a touch of sheer color, or for a little more protection Supergoop’s Lipscreen with SPF 40.
Make a DIY Lip Scrub
Fancy exfoliants like Dior’s Lip Sugar Scrub or Naturopathica’s Sweet Cherry Polishing Lip Scrub are perfectly nice, but pricy. An equally effective alternative is rice powder, which can be found in most grocery stores for $15 or less. Try mixing one tablespoon of rice powder with one tablespoon of almond oil for the best mixture. Massage it onto your lips, wipe it off (along with all your dead skin cells) with a wet towel when you’re done, and violá, DIY lip exfoliation accomplished.
For a treatment that’s equal parts hydrating and exfoliating, try a lip scrub made from brown sugar and honey, which you can add coconut oil to as well. Coconut oil mixed with regular sugar and baby oil is another easy DIY lip exfoliator.
Use a Toothbrush
If you’re on a tight budget, don’t wanna get messy in your kitchen, or have allergies to at home remedy ingredients, try exfoliating with your toothbrush. Gently scrubbing your lips with a toothbrush is a few times a week can remove dead skin cells just as well as sugary scrubs or powders. When the dead skin is shed it becomes easier for lips to absorb the hydrating ingredients in your lip balm. For this reason it may also be smart to follow up exfoliation with a hydrating lip mask, to make your soft lips last.
Try a Lip Mask
These days there’s a skincare mask out there for everything, including your mouth. The best part about lip masks in comparison to full face masks though, is that most of them can be done while your sleeping, like Laniege’s Lip Sleeping Mask. Klavuu’s Nourishing Care Lip Sleeping Pack, Henné Organics Lip Mask, and Tatcha’s Kissu Lip Mask are also great choices to add extra plumpness to your pout. So while you take a break from wearing your PPE, consider treating your lips with some TLC and indulge in a lip mask.
From L’Officiel USA