11 Natural Ways to Cure Chapped, Cracked, and Peeling Lips
It's important to take immediate action when you lips start to chap—otherwise, your lips and the corners of your mouth run the risk of developing painful cracks. These homemade remedies can help.
What Causes Chapped Lips?
This is the million dollar question. It comes down to a lower-than-normal moisture retention ability, but several thing can cause that, including the following:
- The most popular cause is licking your lips too often. Saliva removes moisture from the lips, leaving them peeled and flaky. Habitual licking also removes the protective oily layer on your lips.
- Too much caffeine is another cause because of its dehydrating effects.
- Winter winds can also make your smile disappear. The cold weather results in drier skin.
- Ironically, lip balms are sometimes at fault. Lip balms with alcohol content such as phenol and menthol can cause skin to dry.
- The sodium lauryl sulfate often added to toothpaste to produce lather has a drying effect. If your lips feel dry very time you brush your teeth, then there is a need to change your toothpaste.
- Allergy to some metals such as cobalt and nickel can also cause your lips to crack.
Here are some easy and natural ways to cure your dry and chapped lips:
Castor Oil and Petroleum Jelly
Try applying Castor oil to your lips, then cover them with a thin layer of petroleum jelly. Your lips will start to heal and back to normal within a week.
Glycerin helps to raise the moisture level of skin. It is one of the best natural humectants, which relieve dryness by sealing in the required moisture. Try applying few drops of glycerin to your lips before going to bed. This will repair the damaged tissues, speed up the healing process, and protect the lips from climate conditions.
While it might sound counterintuitive, applying mustard oil to your navel in order to soften your lips is an age-old ayurvedic remedy in India. You just have to massage few drops of mustard oil in your belly button, preferably at bedtime or after taking a bath. The idea behind this is to keep the belly button moist with the oil of mustard seeds.
If dry air, sometimes caused by cold weather, is your problem, then use a humidifier.
Fresh Milk Cream
Many people love softening their lips with fresh milk cream or unsalted butter, which provides moisture. Apply it twice a day.
If dehydration is the cause of your problem, check your water intake. Make sure you stay hydrated at all times, and remember that soda, tea, juice, and coffee are not substitutes (they can actually make the problem worse).
Avoid extreme temperatures and excessive exposure to sun. If you are going out when UV rays are strongest, then wear a good quality sunscreen to shield your lips from sun’s damaging rays.
If you have tried a number of remedies to no avail, then possibly you are suffering from anemia, low iron, or a low red-blood-cell count.
Headache, tiredness, severe chapped lips are signs which indicate that you are deficient in iron. If these match your symptoms, have a doctor check for iron deficiency.
To get rid of dead skin, wet your toothbrush, dunk it in baking soda, and scrub your lips gently in circular motions to remove flakes.
Apply a little honey with the aid of wet finger. Honey is a humectant with natural anti-bacterial properties.
Aloe vera’s excellent healing properties help to heal dry and burned lips. You can apply aloe vera gel or fresh aloe vera pulp directly to your lips to cure them.
Best of Luck!
Chapped lips can be painful, but luckily, as you can see with this list, homemade remedies abound. Each of these treatments is gentle and very effective. All you need to do is to find out the best one for yourself.
More by this Author
Heat rash or prickly heat is a common problem experienced during summer months. Excessive sweating gives rise to bacterial infection that result in blisters and tiny red bumps on the skin. Curing prickly heat rashes...