If there is one thing we can all agree on it is that having sore, chapped lips is one of the most uncomfortable things and as it can be so persistent, it just never seems to get any easier. When we let our lips get into a bit of a state, it can be hard to recover from and we end up in a vicious cycle trying to ignore the annoying pain until it goes away for a little while, only to return if we don’t take the right steps to keep them in a good healthy state for good.
Wouldn’t it be nice if we gave ourselves one less thing to worry about and took a little time to give our lips some well-deserved TLC, so they not only feel good, but look good too!
So, take some of these tips away from all this and start practicing great lip care so that chapped lips can once and for all be a thing of the past.
A Clean Slate
Cleansing is one of the most important parts of any beauty routine in order to have healthy lips. You wouldn’t cake your face in moisturisers and makeup without making sure it has been cleaned first as it causes build up of oil and debris which can cause blemishes and unwanted outbreaks. Lips follow the same principle although they don’t get oily, they get dry and chapped from leaving makeup on them for too long.
Lipstick is great and it can elevate any look instantly, but with advances in formulas that allow it to stay put for longer, it can prevent lips from getting the all-important hydration that they need to stay healthy. Make sure you clean your makeup off each night to start your journey to healthy lips with ease, even if it looks like your lipstick has already vanished throughout the day, there may still be residue that can hold your lips back and make them feel dry.
So, give them a good wash with the rest of your face and use a gentle cloth and some warm water to eliminate unnecessary damage and you are good to go.
A Good Scrub
Exfoliating lips is also something you may want to do especially if you are prone to dry skin on them and want to get on the road to permanently healthy lips. Lips have a different hue to the rest of our face and tend to be more pink or darker than your natural skin tone. This is because the epidermis layers are thinner, and your blood vessels naturally shine through. When you exfoliate your lips, it serves two purposes: to rid your lips of dead skin and to massage them and wake up the blood vessels so that your lips can return to a healthy glow.
The key with exfoliating your lips is to not go overboard and overdo it so that your lips end up sore, remember the layers are so thin and can be easily damaged as they lack the protective barrier that the skin on the rest of your face has. Try exfoliating them once a week to begin with, and then at most do it only two times a week for a great result and less harmful damage.
Ingredients are really of your choosing, but to really be useful, an exfoliator for your lips requires something slightly abrasive to get to work on those dead skin cells that cause dryness. Sugar or coffee grounds are great ingredients for your own homemade lip scrub, combined with honey or shea butter to allow you to rub it onto the lips with ease.
You can also use a cotton facecloth or towel to scrub your lips as it will have enough texture to rub away the dead skin. Start by wetting your lips slightly with warm water to allow the dryness to come away easily as you are not trying to create too much friction, and gently rub in small circular motions until your lips feel smooth. Don’t do this for too long though or you can end up rubbing off the top layer of skin on your lips and it will leave them feeling quite raw.
Use a soft damp cloth to wipe off excess exfoliator and your lips should already start to feel nice and smooth and ready for the next step.
Care and Repair
Now that your lips have a clean slate and are rid of dry skin, it’s time to start a repair treatment that will keep them moisturised. You can just use a lip balm to keep them hydrated however you might find that you need to apply it often or it doesn’t hold the moisture that your lips need to remain healthy around the clock.
A great product for repairing lips and restoring them to their full health is XLips EGF Intensive Care Lip Balm. This little gem packs a punch in the moisture department and only needs to be applied once a day to get the desired effect all day long. The innovative formula is designed to repair damaged lips from deep down and lock in moisture, so you don’t need to keep applying lip balm all the time.
It also helps to protect the skin from environmental factors that can spur on dryness and cause your lips to chap and it stimulates the growth of epidermal cells that help skin to regenerate in instances where it has become quite raw.
The best way to apply Xlips EGF Lip Balm is to wait until you have finished your cleansing routine and coat your lips before you go to bed. The formula is non-sticky and soaks into your lips easily so you don’t have that any discomfort from going to sleep with something on your lips that could rub off on your pillow.
You can apply it during the day too and it provides the perfect base to coat your lips before applying makeup and lipstick, meaning they stay hydrated while you carry on with your day as normal.
When your lips are in need of some TLC, an intensive care lip balm will put them well on the way to recovery and you should start to feel the relief almost instantly. Just remember to upkeep your routine so that they stay in shape and don’t go back to that dry and damaged state. It is unwanted soreness that you and your lips could really do without.
Do’s and Don’ts of Lip Care
Now that you have the tools and advice to get your lips in great condition, you need to make sure that they stay that way and there are a plenty of things that you could be doing right or wrong already. So, lets clear up a few of those myths that could be causing damage and discover a few new things that you may not have known were good for your lips.
DO – Protect your lips from the sun! They are even more delicate than the rest of your face, but because you don’t see the effects of sunburn on them straight away, they tend to be forgotten when it comes to sun protection.
Even on a cooler day, if you are outside the sun’s harmful rays will penetrate the skin on your lips and it can cause them to dry out and become very sore. Sun burnt lips are actually really painful and it will take longer than anywhere else to heal fully. After all your hard work in repairing them, it would be a shame to let the sun damage them again. For your general daily use, find a lip balm that has an SPF of 30 or higher and remember to keep applying it throughout the day as it can come off easily when eating, drinking or even talking.
DON’T – Go out in the sun wearing a cosmetic lip balm with too many ingredients. These are usually designed to give you extra shine and many have different flavours. They aren’t actually designed to protect your lips from the sun or other elements and can actually cause more dryness in the long run.
As fun and as tasty as it can be to have strawberry flavoured lips, the formulas have a dehydrating effect on your lips, so it’s best to look for a lip balm for daily use with high moisture content and soothing properties such as aloe vera.
DO – Drink Plenty of water! One of the first physical signs of dehydration is the drying of your lips. It can be a very clear-cut sign that you need to drink more water quickly. They also lose their colour and can start to look very pale with creased layers of dry skin.
Drinking plenty of water daily anyway is good for your overall bodily health so you should be keeping on top of this, but try to keep a flask of water nearby, especially during long workdays and hot summer days where boredom and fidgeting can cause you to unknowingly try and bite or pick at the dead skin. Water will help alleviate the dryness and keep you going until you can get to your favourite lip balm to soothe any cracks.
DON’T – Be tempted to lick your lips. It seems like it should help, and it might assist with dryness for a few seconds, but after this you could be heading to Sore-ville for a long time. Saliva actually rids your lips of moisture and causes them to dry out, chap and crack, leaving you with the task of repairing them yet again.
Keep a moisturising lip balm with you at all times so that you don’t feel the temptation to lick your lips when out and about.
DO – Visit a Dermatologist if your lip problems are persistent. It could be that you have an allergy to your lip balm or a condition that means your lips require extra hydration. If they have been severely sun-damaged they will also need a bit of professional help to restore them back to good health.
DON’T – Over-moisturise. While it may seem that lips need all the hydration they can get, there is such thing as too much. You can start to become reliant on lip balm and feel like your lips can’t go an hour without it as they start drying out. Practice good health when it comes to your lips and apply an intensive care lip balm at the end of the day to work on their repair and top up a couple of times a day with your favourite unscented lip balm to lock the moisture in.
A Little Bit Extra
We talk about lip health like it is a very clinical task so it’s understandable that it may not seem like the most pleasing way of getting healthy lips. But this doesn’t mean you can’t have lips that feel good and look good at the same time!
When you practice good cleansing, exfoliating and moisturising your lips will start to naturally look their best in colour and texture anyway, but for that little bit extra, you can always rely on your favourite lipstick to really drive those healthy looking lips home.
Xlips EGF Intensive Care Lip Balm soaks in just perfectly to allow you to put your favourite shade over the top without the risk of it sliding off halfway through your evening. While your lipstick does all the looking good, the balm does all the feeling good underneath and keeps them feeling soft and moist all at the same time.
Just remember to cleanse your makeup at the end of the day, being extra careful to remove lipstick from your lips gently and then repeat your nightly moisturising routine. Once you have the hang of what works for your lips and what doesn’t, you can easily restore your own lips back to their full health and keep on top of it day to day. As I always say, a healthy lip is a happy lip!