Cold weather is your lips’ worst enemy–cold, wind, and dry air create chapped, peeling, and dehydrated lips that can easily become a casualty of the season. However, with proper care, your lips will stay hydrated and render chapped lips so last year!
The key to healthy lips is proper care. Simply rubbing any balm or ChapStick on your lips may create more of a problem than a solution. Kat James, author of The Truth About Beauty (Beyond Words Publishing, 2003), warns that “phenols in medicated lip balms will dry out the lips. Other ingredients in these lip balms may still form a physical barrier from moisture loss–but they aren’t really moisturizing. Furthermore, standard lip products contain such ingredients as petrolatum, which research has shown to cause acne. Petrolatum (and other petroleum derivatives, like mineral oil) may also increase photosensitivity and interfere with your body’s own moisturizing abilities, creating even drier lips than if you had left them alone. If you look further down the ingredient list of some conventional lip balms, you’ll likely find such additives as parabens, which are used to extend the shelf life of beauty products but are generally considered toxic and have also been linked to allergic reactions.
“Consider this,” says Tara Grodjesk, president of Tara Spa Therapy and certified ayurvedic practitioner, “we end up eating most of our lip balm. Do you want to eat petroleum?” While we don’t set out to eat our lip balm, we inevitably do. By choosing organic and non-toxic lip products, you’ll not only moisturize your lips, but you’ll also eliminate any chance of consuming toxic ingredients when you lick them.
“Look for natural, plant-derived oils,” advises James. “Avocado oil, shea butter, and cocoa butter are good oils to look for, while essential fatty acids from oils like hemp and cranberry seed can truly nourish the lips.” John Masters Organics Lip Calm, made from organic avocado and olive oil is downright tasty, while protecting lips from dry conditions; Eco Lips Gold, made with organic jojoba, beeswax, and marigold, is an excellent blend for healing dry, chapped lips. To protect your kisser from the sun’s damaging rays, try Tara Spa’s Cool Mint Lip Balm, featuring hemp and olive oils, calendula, mint, St. John’s wort, comfrey, and vitamin E. Juice Beauty also makes a delicious tinted lip moisturizer, providing a just-kissed look with a tint derived from minerals instead of synthetics.
Finally, adds Grodjesk, “Dry chapped lips are a response to dry conditions, both internally and externally. In the body it is a response to internal dehydration; externally it [is] exposure to a dry climate.” So, to keep your lips silky smooth, be sure to stay hydrated–both internally and externally–and soothe your lips with natural lip products.
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By Melissa B. Williams, Natural Solutions
Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may
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