What is a lip balm; types and how it helps with different lip problems

No one likes dry and chapped lips, healthy, smooth, soft, and fuller lips are dream of everyone. Only some people are naturally blessed with great genes that maintain and retain moisture naturally. Others need at least some kind of external help in keeping the lips moisturized and healthy. The most common lip care product is lip balm; skin care starts with using a lip balm regularly.

What is in your lip balm?

People prefer lip care products with more natural ingredients but some added components give lip balm its texture. Main ingredients in a lip balm are:

  • Beeswax:

It is natural wax produced by honeybees. Beeswax main property is acting as lubricating and water proofing agent. In lip balm, beeswax moisturizes and maintains a barrier that prevents loss of moisture from lips, keeping your lips conditioned for longer.

  • Carnauba wax:

Also called as Brazil wax and palm wax, primary source of this wax is plants. It is derived from leaves of the palm Copernicia prunifera. Carnauba wax gives lip balm its glossy finish.

  • Camphor:

It is a waxy, flammable, transparent solid substance with a strong aroma. It gives lip balm it’s soft greasy, solid texture that you can glide over lips.

  • Cetyl alcohol:

Cetyl Alcohol is used as an emollient, emulsifier and thickening agent in the manufacture of lip balms.

  • Lanolin:

It is also called wool yolk, wool wax, or wool grease. This is a type of wax extracted from sebaceous glands of wool-bearing animals. It is used in personal care items such as high value cosmetics, facial cosmetics, and lip products.

  • Paraffin:

Paraffin is a mixture of hydrocarbons derived from petroleum. It is used in lipsticks and lip balms. Although paraffin free products are more desirable and its use is diminished.

  • Petrolatum jelly:

Petrolatum jelly is something we all are familiar with. In lip balms it prevents chapped lips by reducing moisture loss.

Other ingredients:

As mentioned earlier people prefer more natural products. customers are more likely to pick a product that mentions natural ingredients. Other ingredients to enhance lip care properties of lip balms are:

  • Vitamin E,
  • Vitamin C and
  • Vitamin A
  • Some lip balms may have traces of retinol for enhancing collagen production around lips.

Common types of lip balms in market:

THE MOST ABUNDANT product in cosmetic industry; lip balms, come in so many flavors it is impossible to keep count. There are three main categories in which lip balms can be classified.

Regular lip balm:

It is the regular soft plastic tube or round container that we all have used in high school; some of us may still have it in our handbag. These are plain, drugstore lip balms for everyday use. It is used for normal lips i.e. lips with no severe medical condition. These lip balms may or may not be flavored, most common flavors are cherry, strawberry and cocoa.

Medicated lip balm:

Medicated lip balms are usually prescribed to people with medical conditions such as lip sores, chill blains, excessive cracking and bleeding.

High-end lip balm:

High-end lip balms, which I call as big girl lip balms are from high-end brands such as La Mer, Lancome and Estee lauder etc. These lip balms come with Spf protection (at least 4 or higher), have color tints and come packing with minerals and vitamins for healthier, pink, fuller lips. These expensive, posh products come in intricately designed custom lip balm Display boxes.

Lip balm vs lip Butter:

Another product that is usually confused with lip balms (because it’s so similar) is Lip butter. It is creamier in texture and used specifically for soothing and repairing the lips. Lip butter is used at night to help heal cracked lips, it works while you sleep and it is not intended for day time use.

Common lip problems:

Lip balm is used for following lip problems:

Cracked lips:

Not everyone but most people get cracked lips in colder weather, some get it due to dehydration, some get it because of anxiety; it is the most common problem for which people use lip balms.

Lip balm moisturizes lips, maintains moisture barrier and help heal the cracks.

Chapped lips:

I tend to pick my lips whenever I’m stressed. Once I ended up pulling a long strand of skin from my lips before a presentation and it was…. Excruciating. Fortunately, I had lip balm in my purse, it helped soothe the pain.

Dark lips:

Every lip color is different, some people have a darker skin tone and so are their lips. The dark lips that I’m talking about are those which happen a result of sk8i discoloration. It can be due to any reason, smoking and coffee being the main one. Some lip balms contain ingredients like vitamin C and hyaluronic acid that helps with minimizing discoloration and return your natural lip color.

Lipstick bleeding due to fine lines and wrinkles:

This problem is usually associated with old age but many young people may also suffer from it. it happens due to loss of collagen around lips, that causes wrinkles and when you put on any lip product it ends up spreading through those wrinkles making it look like you’re bleeding.

Conclusion:

New, colorful lip balms with exotic flavors used to be a status symbol when I was in high school. Industry trends have changed since then and so did the preferences of people but one thing remained constant; use of lip balm as basic lip care product. No matter how old or young you are, I’m pretty sure you have a lip balm in your purse right now.

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