As if from the mouth of Mama herself, Lady Bird Johnson once said, "Flowers in a city are like lipstick on a woman--it just makes you look better to have a little color."
If you know anything about us southern women, you know you can nearly always count on us to look put together, no matter what we're going through. In fact, it may be our high value for looking our best that gives us the self-confidence to persist in hard times. The face we present to the world says a lot about what's going on, both inside and out. Our lips are no different!
Plump, luscious lips are signs of youthfulness and vitality. On the other hand, dry, cracked, or dull lips signal that it's time for a little TLC. Even the highest quality lipstick isn't going to look nice over dried out lips. With increasing age and fluctuations in our estrogen levels, those inevitable fine lines around our mouths tend to multiply and become traps for our favorite lipsticks. (As you may well know already!)
So how do we take the best possible care of our lips?
Properly caring for our lips allows us to soften and perhaps even delay the signs of aging over time. Check out my top five tips for beautiful, healthy lips.
1. Stay hydrated.
No amount of lip gloss can substitute for drinking plenty of water. When you allow yourself to become dehydrated, your lips will tend to look dry, dark, and dull. So NOT sexy! Remember to take water with you wherever you go and aim to drink half your body weight in ounces of water per day. I hate to be the bearer of bad news. Still, caffeine and alcohol actually deplete your body of moisture. Be sure to drink extra water if you choose to enjoy these things.
2. Exfoliate your lips daily.
Just like our faces, our lips also require regular exfoliation to remove dull, dead skin cells. Don't worry, you don't need a special product to do this, and it doesn't take a bunch of extra time. Simply massage your mouth area with light, circular motions with a damp washcloth or a moistened gauze pad in the morning before you apply in lip products. This light exfoliation will not only smooth your lips, but it will also boost circulation to the area, delivering some much-needed collagen!
3. Moisturize and protect.
While most of us recognize the importance of making quality skincare a priority, we often neglect our lips! Lips that have been too long forgotten will begin to show signs of a compromised skin barrier, which ain't pretty! If you want hot lips, you gotta do the work, ladies. And, really, how much work is it to apply a little lip balm?
Well, good news. I've made it real easy for you with my new Lip Balm to Calm with CBD Oil. You can also apply this little bit of lip-soothing magic anywhere your skin needs a little extra TLC. Try it out on your little dry spots and see how much softer your skin becomes!
4. Resist licking your lips.
I know how tempting it is to lick your lips when they feel dry and you don't have any lip balm handy. But don't do it! Do you know that your saliva's digestive enzymes actually break down the delicate skin on your lips? It's true! Licking your lips will leave your mouth area red, chapped, and sore. I have a feeling this isn't exactly the look you're going for, am I right? Of course, you already know that if you keep your Lip Balm to Calm with you, you won't have to worry about this. You're so smart!
5. Apply sunscreen to your lips, too.
Okay, so your sunscreen game is strong, but what about your lips? Are they protected from the sun, too? The skin on our lips is actually thinner and more susceptible to sun damage than anything else. Our lower lip areas are more likely to suffer from skin cancer, something I never even thought about in my younger years! This is because our lips don't contain melanin, the pigment in our skin that tans over time to defend against sunburn (although a tan is actually a sign of sun damage, sadly).
If you're going out in the sun, don't forget to apply a minimum of SPF 15 to your lips. Look for a chemical-free option because what you put on your lips will inevitably end up in your mouth. Let's keep it clean, ladies!
So there you go! You've got a few of my tips for taking care of your pretty little pout. Now top your lip care off with a light, shimmery lip gloss to deflect age lines and give you that sheer, kissable glow and a bit of color. Mama would definitely approve!