Long-time followers of the blog know we love to talk about lips. Lips are incredible; they’re one of the most sensitive parts of the body, and we use them for everything from eating, to talking, to, of course, kissing. Beautiful lips tend to be an eye-turner, which is one of the many reasons people might come to us looking for fuller lips. One of the reasons we’re so dedicated to lips on the blog is because they can be a bit neglected considering how much they do for us. Using lip balm every day can help your lips resist the environment, from sun to wind; lip balm adds a protective layer around the lips and moisturizes them. Not all lip balms are created equal, though, and there are a few things that you should be aware of when buying lip balms.
The first thing you should know is that some products in lip balm can actually serve to dry out your lips. Ingredients like phenol and menthol will dry your lips, and some color and flavor additives can serve to do the same thing. One tip to keep in mind is that simple tends to work well for lip balm. Petroleum jelly was a very popular ingredient in lip balms for a long time, because it forms an impermeable layer that seals moisture in, and is cheap to manufacture. Over time, it has become less favored, because the layer it forms doesn’t let moisture in; other substances, like beeswax, seem to be better at retaining moisture while still letting new moisture be absorbed.
Another important element to consider when choosing a lip balm is allergies. Seeing minor allergic reactions to lip balm is not uncommon, and when these reactions occur your lips will tend to become dry, cracked or irritated quite quickly, as you can imagine. One possible solution for allergies is to experiment with ingredients yourself. You can try a variety of different commercially available lip balms and attempt to single out which ingredient is causing you problems. That’s why we suggested a simple is better approach; when you have a limited number of ingredients, it’s easier to deduce which are helpful and which are causing irritation. You can also opt to create your own lip balms; the ingredients to do so tend to be affordable, and the processes for making lip balms aren’t overly complex.
A final note on lip balm; you should always opt for SPF protection with your balm, generally SPF 30. Sun protection is all-important when it comes to dermatology; those UV rays are usually what causes your lips to lose their youthful look over time. This applies for basically every part of your body, too; the sun is wonderful, but it’s not your ally if what you’re seeking is a youthful look. Fortunately, most lip balms do come with a degree of SPF protection, so you should be able to find something suitable in most pharmacies or grocery stores. Worth noting: some online lip balm recipes will say they have an SPF of X, but it’s impossible to determine SPF without lab testing, so your mileage may vary.