Dry lips can affect young and old and it's actually quite common. You see, lips need moisture too! Without this, you will experience problems every time.
Lips have very tiny pores and hair follicles, although they're virtually invisible. Most of the moisture your lips receive comes directly from the water you take in as well as the products you apply. Licking your lips does moisten them for a while, but, ultimately, it can dry them out and leave your lips chapped.
There are many reasons why lips can become dry and cracked. It can be due to: *weather conditions *illness *dehydration *constant licking (this is very common with children) *food or drink reaction *chemicals and dyes in lipsticks and lip balms.....to name a few.
One of the things I continue to bring up is: "Remember the basics to overall health!"
Proper skin care can help prevent and treat dry lips, as well as the cracking and bleeding often associated with it.
Water, taken internally, is important in keeping the skin (this includes lips) smooth and flexible. Also, a proper diet filled with fresh and wholesome foods is equally important.
I tell people, "Be very particular with what you put on....all lip balms ARE NOT EQUAL".
From lipstick to lip balm, so many products today claim to defend against wind and chapping, sunburn and aging. But which ingredients offer optimal protection? Do any have adverse effects, such as actually causing dry lips or skin irritation or exposing you to toxins? Plus, are any addictive?
I have seen certain types of lip balms with so many chemicals and preservatives in them, including low levels of lead, that they actually ate away the top layer of skin. How horrible!
Some chemicals found in lip balms can so irritate the skin to the point of causing allergic reactions. If you keep buying lip balms that leave you with dry lips that get itchy or red, try avoiding parabens, fragrance, glycolic or salicylic acid, and lanolin. Menthol and camphor can cause a tingling sensation that could also be an irritant to your lips and the effect is quite drying. What's more, contact dermatitis can be caused by cosmetic pigments such as artificial colours and dyes.
Learn to read the ingredients on the labels of the products you intend to use. And certainly, stay away from products containing MINERAL OIL and PETROLEUM as these will only suffocate your skin.
Here's an interesting little story:
Lip balm has been around for over 100 years. The inventor, Dr. C. D. Fleet, started an unfortunate trend by using petroleum jelly in his Chap Stick, and it's only become clear in recent years just how ineffective petroleum jelly is. Since petroleum jelly isn't absorbed by the skin, it keeps the skin from breathing and over time -- actually makes your lips more chapped.
You see, just like your body needs nutrients, your lip balm should be filled with natural and moisturizing ingredients. However, most products fail on this end!
A proper lip balm must contain nourishing oils, shea butter and vitamin E. This will produce a healthy effect that is completely different from that of petroleum jelly and chemical filled products.
Instead of lying inert on the surface, a truly moisturizing lip balm will absorb into the 7 layers of skin . Then, because it improves moisture retention capacity, your lips will stay healthy and moist even in the driest conditions.
Letter to Nanette:I kept licking my lips repeatedly until they became so chapped and swollen they hurt to even eat anything. I followed your advice and now my lips are so much better now and in a short amount of time. It's so amazing how the skin on my lips just soak in the moisturizing ingredients in those wonderful lip balms! Thank you so much. S.B., Brooklyn, N.Y.
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