Ask the Expert: Can Your Lips Become Addicted to Lip Balm?

May 16, 2016
By: Jackie Burns Brisman | by L'Oréal
Ask the Expert: Can Your Lips Become Addicted to Lip Balm?

Balms, salves, sticks—whatever texture you prefer, a lip conditioner is typically on high rotation for women. However, recently there have been whispers of our lips becoming dependent on the constant use of these (supposedly) hydrating products. We, naturally, became skeptical and reached out to Dr. Rebecca Kazin, board-certified dermatologist at the Washington Institute of Dermatologic Laser Surgery, to get the facts. Below we answer the burning question, can your lips really become addicted to lip balm?

Turns out, many of our favorite lip balms, salves, and sticks are masking the problem of dry lips. “A lot of lip balms out there are really not moisturizing the lips,” Kazin says, “they’re just making the lips feel moisturized.” She went on to describe how many products feature oils that simply sit on top of the skin, not actually hydrating the lips at all. Thus, we apply and reapply—and reapply again—in a never-ending cycle of simply covering up the dryness, instead of truly addressing it with real hydration. This, in turn, gives us the impression that our lips have become dependent on a constant application of lip balm. Kazin advises to opt for lip conditioners that contain hydrating ingredients that aren’t overly greasy. Some of our favorites at include: 

Kiehl’s Lip Balm #1

This creamy lip balm helps to soothe and hydrate chapped lips with a moisturizing blend of ingredients including squalene—a naturally hydrating botanical lipid and a signature ingredient of the brand—vitamin E, aloe vera, and wheat germ oil.

Kiehl’s Lip Balm #1, $7

Maybelline Baby Lips

This lightweight, silky smooth lip balm glides on to your lips and is formulated with a combination of hydrating ingredients—including moisturizing shea butter

Maybelline Baby Lips, $3.99 (price may vary)

Decleor Intense Nutrition Luxuriant Nourishing Balm

With a multi-sensorial oil-in-balm texture, this lip balm deeply hydrates dry, chapped lips. The balm was formulated with nourishing Egyptian Marjoram essential oil, macadamia butter, and shea butter.

Decleor Intense Nutrition Luxuriant Nourishing Balm, $18

Lancôme Absolue Precious Cells Nourishing Lip Balm

Combining hydrating Acacia honey and rosehip seed oil, this balm helps to moisturize dry lips and lock in the hydration. The non-sticky salve glides on and melts right in. 

Lancôme Absolue Precious Cells Nourishing Lip Balm, $50

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