Taking Care of your Lips
1Drink plenty of water. Being dehydrated can cause dry, chapped lips. Try to increase the amount of water you drink to help keep your lips hydrated.
- Winter has especially dry air, so make sure to increase hydration during this season.
- Drink at least the recommended 8 glasses of water a day.
2Use a humidifier to add moisture to the air. If you live in a dry climate, prevent dry chapped lips by keeping your air humidified. You can purchase humidifiers at most big-box stores and drug stores.
3Avoid going out in harsh conditions without protection. Exposing your lips to the sun, wind, and cold will dry them out. Always apply a lip balm or cover with a scarf before venturing out.
- Seal in moisture with a lip balm or chapstick that contains sunscreen to prevent sunburning (yes, lips can sunburn too!).
- Apply thirty minutes before going outside.
- If swimming, re-apply often.
4Check your intake of vitamins and other essentials. Having any vitamin deficiencies can cause your lips to dry and crack. Make sure you are getting enough of the following vitamins and minerals, and speak with your doctor if you aren’t sure you’re getting enough:
- B Vitamins
- Essential Fatty Acids
- Mineral Supplements
Using Topical Applications
1Apply a moisturizer. Using a moisturizer will help your lips to stay hydrated and to absorb moisture more easily. Moisturizers are an essential part of keeping your lips as hydrated as they can be. Look for the following ingredients in your moisturizers:
- Shea Butter
- Emu Butter
- Vitamin E Oil
- Coconut Oil
2Use lip balm. Apply a lip balm to promote healing and prevent chapped lips. Lip balm also helps to seal in moisture and protect your lips from outside irritations.
- Apply lip balm every hour or two to treat dry lips and to keep them healthy.
- Use balm with SPF of at least 16 to save your lips from sun damage.
- Apply lip balm after you have applied a moisturizer.
- Find a balm that has beeswax, petroleum, or dimethicone.
3Try using petroleum jelly. Petroleum jelly (e.g., Vaseline) can help seal and protect your lips, acting as a balm. Using petroleum may also help to protect against the sun, which may dry and crack lips.
- Apply a sunscreen formulated for lips under the petroleum jelly.
1Rule out allergies. You may be allergic to substances that come in contact with your lips. Fragrances and dyes are common culprits. If you frequently get chapped lips, use only products on them that have no fragrances or dyes.
- Toothpaste is another common culprit. If your lips itch, feel dry or painful, or blister after brushing your teeth, you may be allergic to the ingredients in your toothpaste. Try switching to a natural product with fewer preservatives, dyes, or flavorings.
- Lipstick is the most common cause of contact cheilitis (contact allergy) on the lips for women, but toothpaste is the most common cause for men.
2Don’t lick your lips. Licking your lips will cause more chapping. Even though it might seem like this helps keep them hydrated, it actually dries lips out. In fact, “lip-licker’s dermatitis” is frequently seen in people who lick their lips too much, and can cause an itchy rash around the mouth. Use a lip moisturizer instead.
- Avoid using flavored lip balms, as this may encourage licking your lips.
- Don’t over-apply any product as this may also cause you to lick your lips.
3Don’t bite or pick your lips. Biting lips removes their protective covering which causes further drying. Allow your lips to heal and function without picking or biting them.
- Pay attention to when you bite or pick your lips as you might not notice doing it.
- Ask a friend to remind you not to bite or pick if they see you doing it.
4Avoid certain foods. Spicy and acidic foods may irritate your lips. Pay attention to your lips after eating and look for any signs of irritation. Try removing these foods from your diet for a few weeks to see if that irritation subsides.
- Avoid anything with hot peppers or sauces.
- Don’t eat any highly acidic foods such as tomatoes.
- Some foods, like mango peels, contain irritants that should also be avoided.
5Breathe through your nose. The constant flow of air caused by breathing through your mouth can dry your lips out and cause them to chap. Breathe through your nose instead.
- If you have trouble breathing through your nose, see your doctor. You may have allergies or another health condition causing congestion.
6Look at your medications. Certain medications may dry your lips out as a side effect. Talk to your doctor to learn if any of your medications might be responsible for chapped lips. Medications may include prescription and non-prescription drugs used to treat:
- Severe acne (Accutane)
- Congestion, allergies, and other respiratory troubles
- Never stop any medication without a doctor’s approval.
- Ask your doctor for alternatives or how to manage this side effect.
7Know when to see a doctor. In some cases, chapped lips may be the sign of another medical issue that will require a doctor’s care. If you have any of the following, see your doctor:
- Persistent chapping despite treatment
- Very painful chapping
- Swelling or drainage from the lips
- Chapping in the corners of your mouth
- Painful sores on or near the lips
- Sores that don’t heal
How do I keep from getting dry skin?
Keep yourself hydrated. Being dehydrated makes your lips dry. Do not lick or bite your lips, as it will only draw away the natural moisture from your lips and your lips will be devoid of the useful moisture. Put Vaseline or similar on your lips before going to bed. Exfoliate with sugar and Vaseline regularly.
How long will it take before my lips return to normal?
It depends on how dry your lips are, what lip balm/chapstick you use, and how much you apply. In most cases, however, it should take 1 to 3 days.
How can I stop my lips from becoming dry in the summer?
Drink a lot of water, and apply lip balm.
Can I fix chapped lips in one day?
Possibly but it’s not guaranteed. Try an exfoliating scrub. You can make your own with simple ingredients like honey and sugar in the raw, etc.
What if the lips bleed when it peels? How can I prevent that from happening?
wikiHow ContributorAvoid peeling your lips. To prevent dry, dead skin from accumulating on your lips, exfoliate regularly. One simple way to do this is to gently massage your lips with your toothbrush once or twice a day for 20 seconds or so (make sure your lips and the toothbrush are wet, and be very gentle, or bleeding could happen). You can also buy or make a lip scrub to use once or twice a week, as explained in How to Get Kissable Lips.
Do dry lips cause bad breath?
No. Bad breath generally comes from food/drink odors in your mouth, poor oral hygiene, or sickness.
Can lip balm dry your lips quicker?
No. Lip balm keeps your lips hydrated for a good amount of time.
I have been using Baby Lips as a balm. Will it work if I use a tinted lip balm?
It depends on the brand. If you use a bad one, it won’t really work, but if you use a good brand designed for chapped lips, it should work the same as a regular lip balm. Test different products until you find one that works for you.
What does it mean if I am applying lip balm and it causes sweating around the lips?
You may be having an allergic reaction to the balm. Try a different brand.
What brand is the best?
Baby Lips is a good brand.
Ask a Question
If this question (or a similar one) is answered twice in this section, please click here to let us know.
- Always drink plenty of water and stay hydrated.
- Try using chapstick or balm at night to prevent dry lips in the morning.
- Make sure you remember to apply moisturisers in the morning. The driest time for your lips is just after waking up!
- Main causes of chapped lips are sun, wind, and cold or dry air.
- Apply lipbalm before eating and wash your lips after eating.
- Wash your hands before touching your face to apply a balm or hydration.
- Apply honey on your lips before bed every night.
- Never ingest chapstick, sunscreen, or balms as these may be toxic.
In other languages:
Français: éviter d’avoir les lèvres sèches et gercées, Italiano: Curare le Labbra Secche e Screpolate, Español: evitar los labios agrietados, Deutsch: Trockenen und rissigen Lippen vorbeugen, Português: Prevenir Lábios Secos e Rachados, Русский: избежать проблемы сухих и потрескавшихся губ, 中文: 防止嘴唇干裂, Bahasa Indonesia: Mencegah Bibir Kering Pecah Pecah, Čeština: Jak předcházet suchým a popraskaným rtům, Nederlands: Voorkomen dat je lippen droog en schraal worden, العربية: حماية الشفاه من الجفاف والتشقق, Tiếng Việt: Ngăn ngừa Môi Khô nẻ, ไทย: ป้องกันริมฝีปากแห้งแตก, 한국어: 입술을 촉촉하게 유지하는 법
Thanks to all authors for creating a page that has been read 693,517 times.