The Science Behind Beauty

By Dr Juliet O.

Tuesday, 15 August 2017

Getting Rid Of Chapped Lips + My Current Lip Balm Favourites

Lip balms and treatment advice for dry, chapped and cracked lips. Favourites are EOS, carmex and vaseline.

I recently did a poll on my twitter page and asked what post to do next and a post on chapped lips was highly requested. So firstly, I want to say thank you to my lovely twitter followers, you guys are amazing! As promise this post is all about chapped lips and instead of just being a science nerd and describing the entire science behind it, I thought it'd be nice to include a few of my favourite lip balms too.


Chapped lips happen when there is an over-drying of the lips! The dryness and moisture loss causes them to appear cracked and chapped and it can be annoying to get rid of them! Because our lips are so thin, they are so vulnerable to over-drying. They don't actually have as much protection to hold in moisture. So when its too dry, it cracks and opens, letting the moisture out. Dryness is usually caused by: cold air, low humidity, sunlight and strong winds.

Because our lips are more prone to drying, than the rest of your body is because they are very thin. They are actually made up of mucus membranes which are different from our regular skin. These mucus membranes are only 3-5 cells thick, whilst our regular skin, has 15-20 cells of thick protective skin layer. As the moisture comes out of our lips, they contract and form cracks which get bigger and bigger. The moisture loss is so great due to an over-drying positive feedback cycle. Too science-y okay I'll stop but you what I mean.


Well, to be honest, the lips repair and heal itself naturally! So technically there's nothing we can do to actually treat them. However what we can do, is to use a thick barrier to cover the cracks and that will stop them from losing moisture. Most lip balms either have petrolatum or bees wax because it is heavy and holds in that moisture in. So there are a range to choose from. 

Lip Balm Key IngredientsCamphor, Beeswax, Petrolatum, Oils/ Butters

Here are my current lip balm favourites:

Carmex contains camphor, petrolatum, lanolin, beeswax, cocoa butter || Benefits: Camphor soothes cracked, painful, chapped lips while having a thick protective barrier

EOS (organic)
EOS contains Shea butter, Vitamin E, Jojoba Oil. || Benefits: 95% organic, petroleum, paraben and gluten- free and it's a great alternative to people who are sensitive or allergic to most products.

Vaseline contains petrolatum & soft paraffin. || Benefits: Fragrance free, multipurpose use and has a thick protective barrier. Also comes in flavoured lip balms forms, if you want more alternatives.


Interesting Fact:
The skin on the lips are so thin, its is almost translucent, so you can kind of see through it. And that is what gives your lips its characteristic colour, because you see the pinky-red blood in the vessels underneath.

Useful Tip:
To avoid worsening your chapped lips dont' lick them! Our saliva has a digestive function and if you put saliva on your lips you may worsen the irritation and make the chapped appearance worse.


And that's it for this post! I hope you liked it! Thank you so much for reading and comment below if you found this post interesting and what your lip balm favourites are! Love you lots J x


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