The skin of the lips is different from that of other parts of the body and as such requires special care. In fact, the lips do not have sweat or sebaceous glands and have little melanin, which is a pigment that has the function of protecting the skin from damage from UV rays. Therefore, the lips are more exposed to the action of the sun's rays. Not only that, due to the conformation of the skin tissues of the lips, there is also a high loss of water that is not retained. Hence, the lips are a very delicate part of the body that, when exposed to atmospheric events, tends to dry out and crack easily (Gfeller et al, Clin Cosmet Investig Dermatol, 2019). Hence the importance of protecting the lips with specially designed cosmetic products, capable of softening them, making them supple and well nourished. So let's see some little tips to take care of our lips.
Just as there is a face and body scrub, there is also a lip scrub. The lip scrub helps to eliminate dead skin and to restore shine and softness to the lips. Mix whole brown sugar and honey until it forms a paste. Apply to moist lips in slow circular movements, then rinse. The whole sugar makes the skin smooth and in addition it contains glycolic acid, an exfoliating agent highly appreciated in cosmetics that stimulates tissue regeneration (Prestes et al, An Bras Dermatol, 2013). Honey acts as a humectant, soothing, healing and antiseptic, leaving the lips soft and supple (Burlando et al, J Cosmet Dermatol, 2013). As an alternative to honey you can use a little vegetable oil, such as jojoba oil, which repairs the damaged skin barrier and is anti-inflammatory (Lin et al, Int J Mol Sci, 2018). Don't overdo the scrub to avoid irritating your lips. In general, the advice is to apply the scrub no more than twice a week.
Every day, when necessary, and after the scrub you can use lip balms to keep lips hydrated and soft. And it is not necessary to be an expert in the art of DIY to create a lip product. In fact, you can simply use coconut oil, to be distributed in small quantities on the lips. Coconut oil is soothing and moisturizing, is anti-inflammatory and improves the skin barrier (Varma et al, J Tradit Complement Med, 2019). If, on the other hand, you want to try a slightly more complex recipe and make a colored lip balm yourself, here's how. In a bowl, pour 10 grams of cocoa butter, you can also find it in well-stocked grocery stores, 6 grams of castor oil, 6 grams of jojoba oil and 10 grams of beeswax. All these ingredients help retain water in the tissues, protect the skin and promote healing processes. Melt everything in a double boiler. Then add rosehip powder to achieve the desired color. Noteworthy is the fact that rosehip powder not only gives a pleasant color but is also anti-aging, counteracts wrinkles and improves hydration and elasticity (Phetcharat et al, Clin Interv Aging, 2015). Pour into a jar with a lid and store in a cool, dry place.
First aid cold sores
The lips are not only susceptible to wind, sun and changes of temperatures, becoming dry and irritated, they can sometimes be affected by the herpes simplex virus. The essential oils of tea tree and eucalyptus have been shown to be very useful in this case and to have a possible action against the herpes simplex virus (Schnitzler et al, Pharmazie, 2001). At the first symptoms, such as swelling, redness and heat concentrated in one part of the lip, mix in a small bowl a spoonful of coconut oil heated quickly in a double boiler, 3 drops of tea tree essential oil and 2 drops of eucalyptus essential oil. Apply to the lips several times during the day.