Winter is round the corner and you need to take care of your lips just like you take care of your skin. Winter brings a lot of dryness in the air, causing your skin to become even drier. Your lips need care regardless of the weather, but they need special care to avoid becoming dry and chapped during winter. The best way to keep your lips soft and moist is not to let them become dry. Here are 8 ways to protect your lips and prevent chapping during the cold winter months:
- Hydrate from within: What goes inside plays a great role in what is reflected outside. Hydrate your lips from within by drinking lots of water. You may not drink required amount of water in winter since your body doesn’t sweat as much. This is one of the reasons why the skin and lips tend to look dry and dull in winter. Drink 8 to 10 glasses of water every day. Maintain a proper diet and eat foods that are rich in Vitamin A and vitamin C, which will help repair skin tissue, increase collagen production and keep your lips soft.
- Avoid licking your lips: When your lips are dry, you will have a tendency to lick them to make them moist. This should be avoided as when you lick your lips, the air causes the saliva to evaporate quickly and this actually leaves them feeling drier. This happens because the enzymes in your saliva that are meant to digest food make your lips dry and can leave your lips feeling irritated as well. So, if you feel your lips are dry, apply a lip balm to hydrate them.
- Exfoliate once a week: Like your skin, your lips need exfoliation. Exfoliating helps eliminate dull and flaky skin, and can result in soft, pink lips. Exfoliate your lips at least once or twice a week. Keep in mind that doing this too frequently can cause irritation, redness, and soreness. Choose an exfoliator with no harsh ingredients, apply it in small circles, and remember not to rub too hard. Once you’re done, wipe or wash it off and apply lip moisturizer or lip balm.
- Avoid peeling or pluck off skin: Avoid the tendency to peel or pick the skin off chapped lips. Doing this can result in cracks and blisters which would be not only unsightly but also very painful. Treat chapped lips with a lip oil or heavy ointment-based balm right away.
- Apply lip balm frequently: Apply lip balm every couple of hours to keep your lips moisturized throughout the day. Also apply it before going to bed. When you buy lip balm, consider the following:
- Buy one that is infused with a good amount of SPF, because even if it is winter, you need protection from the sun’s UV rays.
- Use an ointment-based lip balm because it locks in moisture and helps to heal cracks and splits in the skin.
- Invest in a lip balm that contains petrolatum, essential oils, or glycerine to help with healing.
- Breathe through your nose: When you are out in the cold weather, breathing through your mouth creates airflow around your lips and releases moisture. This is the reason why you see your breath in cold temperatures. Try to breathe through your nose to avoid lip chapping.
- Stay indoors as much as possible: Stay indoors if it is windy or bitterly cold. Exposing your lips to the harsh winter weather can affect the skin and cause chapped lips. Replace walking and other outdoor exercises with indoor workouts.
- Use a humidifier: During winter, the air inside your home can become dry and cause chapped lips. Using a humidifier can help. Maintain the humidity levels in your home between 30 to 50%. Air that is too humid lead to growth of bacteria and other microorganisms.
Don’t ignore lips that become chapped and painful and don’t heal. Consult your doctor or a dermatologist and get treatment before the symptoms become worse.