Does your lip balm makes your lips dry?
Unless you are blessed with a supernatural membrane, the winter weather is probably causing your lips to become extra dry and flaky . And if your lips are rough, how else should you possibly avoid the temptation to always have a tub/tube/stick of lip balm on and lick? Then lather religiously throughout the day.
But if you find that you're hitting it a little too often, we have some bad news: your precious lip balm may be doing you more harm than good. Contrary to intuition, some lip balms may exacerbate dry lips by contributing to roughness. What can you gain?
Despite the moisturizing promises of lip balms, what you see is not necessarily what you get. "Certain lip balms contain only moisturizers that draw moisture from the air (immediate moisture), such as hyaluronic acid and glycerin." Marnie Walnut, MD, a board-certified dermatologist in New York City. "However, in the absence of occlusive substances such as Vaseline, beeswax, shea butter, coconut oil, and squalene, moisture will not be sealed to protect the moisture barrier. As soon as the moisture evaporates, your lips will feel dry and dehydrated.
In short, moisturizer ingredients need to be offset by occlusive ingredients to avoid the reapplication cycle. Occlusion is necessary to create a physical barrier to prevent water loss. According to Dr. Nussbaum, this is the same reason why licking the lips makes lip irritation worse. The saliva quickly evaporates, leaving the lips even drier, and the lip-licking cycle begins again.
If your lip balm contains both moisturizers and occlusives, and you still experience persistent dryness, you may need to dig deeper into the ingredient list. "Some lip balms also contain allergens such as lanolin, parabens, phenol, and salicylic acid. Some lip balms contain allergens such as lanolin, parabens, phenol and salicylic acid, which often irritate certain people's skin," says Dr. Nussbaum. "Therefore, it may take a little trial and error to find out which lip balm is right for your mouth." You may also be addicted to medicated perfumes, as some active ingredients may actually make your lips more sensitive and prone to chapping.
To be safe, Dr. Nussbaum recommends avoiding parabens, phenols, phthalates, fragrances, and lanolin altogether. Sensitive skin . A good approach is to replace fragrant oils if you feel you must constantly apply what you are already using, or if you feel a stinging sensation when applying. One should also be wary of excessive exfoliation, which can strip the outer layer of the skin and make it more susceptible to environmental elements.
That's not to say that you should avoid lip balm altogether or avoid lip balm moisturizers. And don't worry. The belief that lip balm will cause your body to stop producing natural moisture is just a myth. 'To maintain healthy lip skin, keep your lips well moisturized with a lip balm that soothes and protects the lip barrier with both moisturizers and occlusives, like eos The Hero Extra Dry Lip Treatment," says Dr. Nussbaum. "Also, lips do not contain melanocytes and are very sensitive to the sun, so you should apply SPF at least year-round."
Think of it this way. Applying a bad lip balm is like drinking a soda to quench your thirst. It's great in the short term, but it won't help heal your rough lips. If the dryness does not respond to the change in lip balm and you still have painful dryness after a week, it is advisable to consult a dermatologist. A dermatologist can determine if you have any allergies or underlying medical conditions that cause dry lips and recommend the best lip balm for your specific skin type.