When we think of health care and beauty, many of us overlook our lips. In fact, 70% of beach goers who slather on sunscreen products will overlook their lips. However, in a study conducted at the University Of Texas Medical Branch Department Of Dermatology, researchers evaluated the knowledge of ultraviolet light as a risk for lip cancer and found that many beach goers were unaware of these risks. Read on to find out what sun damage can do to your lips and how you can keep your lips moist and healthy.
When it comes to skin cancer, ultraviolet rays are the most pertinent risk factor. Because lips don’t have melanin, they are highly vulnerable to sun damage caused by exposure to UV. The Mayo Clinic warns that the sun’s UV rays can affect the production of collagen on your lips leading to the formation of wrinkles on or around the mouth as an early aging sign.
The American Academy of Dermatology recommends applying an SPF lip balm every day, even on cloudy days, and reapply every two hours. Drinking water often will also help in protecting lips from sun damage as well as keeping them soft, smooth and hydrated. Here are some other tips for you in finding a lip balm product that will protect your lips:
- Stay away from shiny lipsticks that have high gloss with little or no color as they will attract UV rays. You’re better off with a matte product.
- Buy lip products that have a base of paraffin, petroleum jelly or beeswax. Beeswax. These will stay on your lips longer and seal moisture longer than thinner glosses and balms.
- If your lips become dry and start to peel, use sugar and olive oil to exfoliate lips and remove accumulated dead skin cells.
Here are some other tips on how to keep lips looking healthy:
- Stop Licking Your Lips: Robert Brodell, M.D., a dermatologist from Warren, OH, warns that licking your lips can damage the protective barrier and dry out the lips. The saliva’s digestive enzymes break down this barrier. Opt for a lip balm instead.
- Use A Humidifier: It can replace moisture in dry indoor air and keep lips and skin hydrated.
- Limit Your Use of Matte Lipsticks: They can dry your lips extremely, which is why they should be used sparingly when lips are chapped. Try alternating them with hydrating lipsticks or add a moisturizing lip balm layer underneath.
Here is a guide to treating common problems associated with your lips:
- Cut in the Corner of the Mouth: Keep lips hydrated and apply hydrocortisone cream to affected area.
- Wrinkles Around Lips: Apply creams with anti-aging ingredients like retinol. Chemical peels can be helpful as well.
- Thin lips: The best option for thin lips is a collagen injection, which costs about $300 and can last up to six months. Consumers should be aware of possible side effects including excessive swelling and temporary redness of the lips.
What do you do to keep your lips looking luscious? Let us know in the comments section below.