Chapped lips are dry, cracked lips. Although it is widely believed that chapped lips occur only during the winter, the lips can get dry at any time of the year if it is not taken care of. Here’s a guide on how to cure chapped lips.
Do your lips feel dry and cracked? Do your lips burn? Do your lips sting or feel uncomfortable? then this article is for you.
You need your lips in the articulation of speech; to talk, make sounds, and even to kiss loved ones and that is why dry lips are not just painful but can be embarrassing too. However, there is no need to worry. This article outlines the causes and cure of chapped lips.
First, we have to examine the cause of chapped lips as this will help you take preventive measures, after which, we will look into simple, yet effective solutions.
Common Causes of Chapped Lips
Unlike other parts of the skin, lips are more likely to dry out and become chapped. This is because they have the thinnest skin layer and they do not contain oil glands. This, therefore, causes a lack of moisture on the lips.
The lips need to be protected from everything that can cause dryness. Some of these causes are:
This is the major cause of dryness to the lips. Dehydration happens when the body is lacking adequate fluid to keep it moisturized. This causes the skin to become dry and that includes the lips as well.
Harsh Climate Condition
This is another factor that causes the lips to get dry. The cold temperature during winter causes dry air, and this dry air is responsible for drying out the skin’s natural moisture — leaving the lips chapped and dry.
Exposure of the skin to the sun can cause skin damage. One of these damages is the dryness of the skin which can lead to the lips cracking and becoming chapped.
Excessive Licking of Lips
People commonly lick their lips when it is dry to provide moisture. Although, this moistens the lips but only temporarily.
This habit only worsens the issue because as the saliva evaporates, it pulls and draws out moisture from the lips thereby making your lips dry out even more.
This can cause not just the mouth to be dry but also the lips.
How to Cure Chapped Lips
Here are simple, yet effective remedies that will not only help prevent chapped lips but also help in curing chapped lips:
How to Cure Lips With Essential Oils
Essential oils are natural oils that provide relief for cracked and chapped lips by moisturizing and protecting them from further damage. Some effective essential oils are:
- Coconut oil
- Olive oil
- Almond oil
- Shea butter
Coconut oil especially is known to contain Medium Chain Fatty Acids(MCFAs) which makes absorbing easy for the skin on the lips. It gives instant hydration.
How to Cure Chapped Lips Using Natural Home Remedies
These natural remedies include honey, cucumber, green tea, and aloe vera. They contain antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties that moisturize and soothe your skin whilst also preventing it from infections.
Aloe vera helps in healing chapped lips and also soothes the burning of chapped lips as it contains vitamins, minerals, and anti-inflammatory properties that moisturize and soothe the skin. Apply aloe vera gel on your lips to heal chapped lips.
Cucumber contains antimicrobial properties that help rehydrate the skin. Simply cut out slices from your cucumber and place them on your lips for about 10–15minutes to rehydrate your lips.
Honey contains antioxidants and it is highly moisturizing, this makes it a good treatment for dry lips. It also helps prevent cracked lips from infection.
Green tea contains polyphenols and it is also rich in antioxidants and minerals. Simply soak a bag into warm water and gently rub the liquid over your lips. This will help soften and remove excess dry skin from the lips.
How to Prevent Having Chapped Lips
Identifying the cause of dry lips is important as it can help in solving the problem. If excessive licking of the lips is the cause, you can just easily stop the practice. if it is due to cold, then you can simply find certain brands or products that can help protect the lips.
Drink the adequate amount of water your body needs to stay hydrated, as this generally helps prevent dryness of the skin
Use lip balm regularly
Make use of lip balm to moisturize and protect your lips. It is best to opt for lip balms and products that contain SPF(sunscreen) for protecting your lips from sun damage.
Wear your nose mask
Make use of your nose mask to prevent your lips from the hot sun and dry air: everyone owns a nose mask, courtesy of COVID-19. Why not use it to your advantage, not only will you protect yourself from the deadly virus, you’d be protecting your lips as well.
Other useful preventive measures:
- Avoid scented or flavored lip products that contain camphor, phenol, or menthol.
- Stop licking your lips.
- Avoid exposing your lips to the sun and dry air.
How long does it take for chapped lips to heal?
It takes about 2 to three weeks to heal chapped lips using the recommended self-care remedies.
If it doesn’t, it’s advised to see or speak to a dermatologist about it to know if your chapped lips are a result of an underlying condition such as yeast infection, allergic reaction, or so on.
Can lips get chapped from kissing?
Yes, it can. Kissing can cause your lips to get dry. This is because the saliva that gets on the lips as you kiss is acidic and this can cause irritation and dryness of your lips.
Kissing when you already have chapped lips can also worsen it. Therefore, avoid kissing too much or at all when you are still trying to treat your chapped lips.
You have tried all these remedies and still, end up with even worse chapped lips. Why is that happening?
You might need to consult a dermatologist to get a diagnosis of what might be wrong. Chapped lips may be a symptom of an underlying disease or infection.
Having chapped lips is very common during winter/harmattan due to the effect of dry air that occurs during the period. It is important to moisturize our lips to avoid getting dry and cracked lips.
A popular saying goes, “prevention is better than cure.” It is best to try as much as possible to avoid getting your lips chapped in the first place. Take the necessary preventive tips mentioned in the article to help you achieve that.
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