As one of the most prominent features on your face, your lips are supposed to stand out. Unfortunately, standing out without a shield for protection against harsh or very cold weather can lead to seriously chapped lips.
That’s why regularly adding moisture to lips as part of a daily ritual is the best defense against lips that appear dull, cracked, flakes, and wind burned.
“Periodic, consistent application of a moisturizing lip balm will help seal in lips’ natural moisture and form a protective barrier to the cold and wind that frequently exasperate the problem of dry, cracked lips this time of year,” says Dr. Charles Zugerman, associate professor of clinical dermatology at Northwestern University Medical School in Chicago.
Zugerman added that because lip skin is very thin and contains few oil glands to keep it lubricated, moisture is critical to maintaining a healthy balance.
He recommends a moisturizing lip balm such as Blistex Lip Infusion, which is the first-ever liquid lip balm. Its formula also includes lanolin to help store and maintain the skin’s moisture balance.
If lips become severely chapped, Zugerman says, a medicated lip product can help alleviate itching while lips heal. A product such as Blistex Lip Medex is ideal because it provides very immediate and noticeable relief from hot, itching sensations while helping to restore a healthy moisture balance to lips.
In addition to moisturizing and protecting lips, Zugerman suggests the following actions for keeping lips healthy through the cold weather season:
• Choose a moisturizing balm that contains SPF, even though many people don’t necessarily think about protecting their lips from the sun during short days and cold temperatures.
• Apply lip balm at bedtime to help keep lips hydrated while you sleep.
• Avoid the urge to lick dry lips. Bacteria and enzymes in saliva can damage lips and evaporated moisture dries out lips even more.
• Drink water regularly, which helps hydrate the entire body.
• Use a humidifier where indoor air is particularly dry.
• Limit the use of medicated products-such as benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, Retin A, and Renova–that may intensify chapped lips during cold weather.
• Exfoliate skin once a week to keep skin refreshed and vibrant.
• Limit hot baths and showers, which can irritate dry skin and lips.
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