Who does not love baby soft, supple and pink lips? But with constant exposure to pollution, UV rays and harsh chemicals from lipsticks, not to mention smoking, your lips end up looking anything but perfect. They look dry, become darker and begin to chap. This is why it is really important to dedicate to a proper lip care routine, just like you do for your skin and hair.

This is because the skin on our lips is a lot thinner than the rest of the face, and is therefore, very easily prone to damage. Simply wearing a lip balm does not solve the issue of chapped lips; you need to also care for your lips in other ways. And this is exactly what we are going to help you with today with the help of Dr. Ameesha Mahajan.

Read on to find out everything you need to know about lip care, so your pout looks absolutely perfect, with or without lipstick!

But before we begin with the lip care tips, it is important to understand what some common problems when it comes to your lips are.

Common lip problems

Now that you know about these common lip problems, the only way to really care for these issues is to indulge in some regular lip care. But if you don’t know where to start, then we are going to talk about eight basic lip care methods that will help you get the best pout ever!

 

1. Lip care tips

Lip care tips

 

- Use a lip scrub

Use a lip scrub

This is one piece of advice that we skip time and time again, but all good lip care regimes always emphasize the importance of exfoliating your lips regularly. Lip scrubs help to slough away dead skin cells, promote blood circulation, reduce discoloration and keep your lips super soft, healthy and nourished. Additionally, using a lip scrub also means that your lipstick will go on a lot smoother. Dr. Ameesha Mahajan adds, “Lip scrubs are important to exfoliate the lips, but don’t use them more than once or twice a week. Make sure to use a gentle scrub and do not over exfoliate. You can use a lip scrub which has very gentle rounded beads, alternatively, you can use sugar mixed with olive oil or coconut oil as a DIY lip scrub. Make sure to apply a lip balm right after you scrub your lips”

 

- Drink enough water

Drink enough water

For your lips to be healthy and supple on the outside, it is important to ensure that your body is hydrated from the inside. Not drinking enough water is touted as one of the top causes of dehydrated skin and chapped lips. Therefore, make it a point to consume at least eight glasses or about two and a half litres of water every single day. This will not only help heal dry and chapped lips but will also improve your overall bodily functions.

 

- Keep a lip balm handy

Keep a lip balm handy

One of the most basic ways to heal as well as prevent chapped lips to use a hydrating lip balm. This is because a lip balm is enriched with nourishing butters, oils and waxes, all of which help penetrate the skin on your lips to give it a good dose of moisture. Lip balms also form a layer on your lips to protect them from harmful environmental aggressors. Ensure that you reapply a lip balm several times a day, and under lipstick for better protection.

 

- Protect from sun exposure

Protect from sun exposure

Just like the skin on your face or the rest of your body, your lips are equally susceptible to the damage caused by UV exposure. This leads to various issues such as darkening of the lips, thinning and ageing to name a few. Therefore, just like you apply sunscreen all over your face and body, it is important to do the same for your lips as well. Get SPF-infused lip balms and lipsticks as they protect you from sun damage and keep your lips looking soft and youthful.

 

- Eat a healthy diet

Eat a healthy diet

Since the skin on your lips is so thin, a little change in your body ends up reflecting on your lips immediately. Consuming a diet which is not rich in essential vitamins and nutrients will end up affecting your lips and make them dry, parched and flaky. Dr. Ameesha says, “Since UV exposure and the free radical image has a role in the darkening of the lips, adding antioxidant-rich food helps in countering the negative effects. Drinking eight to12 glasses of water and keeping yourself well hydrated also has a definitive role for healthy lips. Some people get cracks on the corner of their lips which can occur due to vitamin B12 deficiency or an early sign of diabetes, so it’s best to consult your doctor if you see these symptoms. Therefore, an essential part of lip care is to consume a healthy, wholesome and nutrient-rich diet. This will nourish and condition your lips from the inside to ensure that your pout looks super healthy and soft on the outside.”

 

- Clean your lips everyday

Clean your lips everyday

Cleansing your face and removing makeup before bed is extremely crucial for having clear and blemish-free skin. In the same way, cleaning your lips every single night, whether or not you wear lip makeup, is really important. This little step helps get rid of dirt, oil and any other impurities and protects your delicate lips from damage.

BB pro tip: Simply saturate a cotton pad with some cleanser or micellar water and wipe it across your lips to make them squeaky clean. Follow it up with a generous amount of lip balm to wake up to soft and supple lips.

 

- Avoid licking your lips

Avoid licking your lips

Do you have the habit of licking your lips each time they feel dry? Although this provides momentary respite, it is, in fact, very damaging to your lips in the long run. This is because once the saliva evaporates from the surface of your lips, it ends up drying them out further, which leads to parched and flaky lips. An easy way to avoid this issue is to apply lip balm every night as the last step in your skincare routine. This will ensure that you wake up to baby soft lips that feel hydrated all day long.

 

- Prep your lips before makeup

Prep your lips before makeup

Lipsticks, especially matte and liquid lipsticks, tend to contain a lot of ingredients that prove to be drying on the lips. Hence, if you already have dry lips, then it is best to scrub and moisturise your lips before wearing such lipsticks. This will eliminate the appearance of lip lines, and keep your lips looking soft and supple.

 

2. FAQs about lip care

FAQs about lip care

Q. What should one do to lighten pigmented and discoloured lips?

A. Dr. Mahajan says, “If you have discoloured lips, it is important to identify the cause. It can be because of smoking, dryness and dehydration, UV exposure, allergy to lipstick or even toothpaste, the habit of licking your lips and even genetics. But a general rule of thumb to eliminate pigmented lips is to moisturise and use an SPF-infused lip balm. If you are in the habit of licking your lips, make sure to consciously avoid doing it as that can cause further dryness of lips and also form a ring of pigmentation around the lips. If you are allergic to a lip product or toothpaste, make sure to contact a dermatologist to help you with alternatives and treat your allergy. Apart from this, certain mild peels and lasers can also help in lip lightening.”

Q. What are the ingredients one must look for when buying lip balms?

A. The ingredients in your lip balm help to really protect and nourish and your lips, therefore one must pay attention to what their lip balm consists of. Dr. Mahajan elaborates on this by saying, “Vitamin E, aloe vera, coconut oil, bees wax and avocado oil are some helpful ingredients. Apart from that, make sure that your lip balm that you put in the morning has an SPF to protect your lips.”

Q. What is the best way to heal cracked lips?

A. In order to heal cracked lips, it is first important to find out what is causing it. The doctor explains, “Extreme temperatures, matte lipsticks and lip licking can cause cracked lips. Therefore, you can use a thick moisturising lip balm or even some coconut oil, homemade butter and ghee as a lip mask to heal cracked lips. Make sure that you add a lip balm every night to your skincare routine as air conditioning also causes dryness of lips. While using a matte lipstick, you must always apply a lip balm under it and do not forget to remove your lipstick before going to bed.”