Happy 2019, everybody!

If you thought standing under the Christmas mistletoe wreaked havoc on your lips, that’s nothing compared to what the freezing winter weather can do. Let’s face it, the falling temperatures can hit most parts of our body hard but our lips dry out ten times faster than the rest of our skin which makes them especially vulnerable if we don’t look after them properly. Luckily, here’s a quick guide to help you keep your kisser in luscious condition no matter how cold it gets!

Stay hydrated

Drink plenty of water, but don’t overdo coffee and tea because too much caffeine can dehydrate you. The general recommendation is that you should drink eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day. However, some health experts believe that you should sip on water constantly throughout the day, even when you’re not thirsty.

The bottom line is – it’s important to stay hydrated. Our entire body needs water to function properly, and our lips are one of the first areas to dry out and suffer if we’re not taking in as much water as our body needs.

Never think you’ve got your lip health licked!

If your lips are dry, you’ll lick them to make them moist – that’s hardly rocket science, right? Well, believe it or not, licking your lips isn’t a good idea. There are enzymes in your saliva that can irritate your lips and dry them out even more. So, forget about licking your lips and invest in a good ointment-based lip balm instead. A healing lip balm (look for one that contains glycerine or essential oils) will lock in moisture and help to repair cracks and splits. Also, don’t forget that even though the sun doesn’t seem to be shining we’ve always got to protect our skin from harmful UV light and our lips are no exception. Try to find a lip balm that includes sunscreen among its ingredients.

And while we’re giving lip balms lip service…

Avoid lip balms that contain eucalyptus, camphor or menthol because those substances will dry out your lips even further. If that wasn’t bad enough, you’ll probably find yourself applying more of the lip balm to compensate which will make the situation even worse.

Don’t crack up!

If cracks, splits or peels do appear: a) don’t leave them untreated and b) once you’ve treated them, leave them alone! Use a lip balm or, if your lips are especially painful and sensitive, gently rub a small amount of smoothing oil on your lips to provide greater relief and protect them from further damage. Natural oils like coconut oil, olive oil, almond oil or jojoba oil are particularly good.

Afterwards, don’t scrub your lips or pick the peeling skin off with your teeth or fingers because that can cause bleeding, increase irritation and create an even bigger problem (not to mention that it looks pretty gross as well!)

Avoid eating food or using products that may irritate your chapped lips before they’ve properly healed. For many people that can include giving spicy food and certain cosmetics and skincare items a temporary swerve. Do we need to add that giving lipstick a miss is probably a good idea too?!

Don’t forget bedtime

Breathing in and out through your mouth can cause your lips to dry out, so make sure you apply a lip balm before you go to bed. Also, your central heating may have left the air in your house extremely dry so you might want to use a humidifier to add moisture to the atmosphere and replenish your skin while you’re asleep. Humidifers have also been shown to add warmth, relieve allergies and prevent snoring – not that we’re suggesting you snore, of course!

And there you have it. Follow this simple advice and your pucker will stay perfect all winter long.

See you in February!

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