The mouth and lips, like the eyes, add character to the face. They are the focus of attention when we speak because they are so much a part of our communication with others. The lips also add balance to the face, along with other facial features like the eyes and the nose. As far as beauty is concerned, appropriate lip makeup can enhance the beauty of the face.
Nutritional deficiencies can also lead to dry, chapped lips. Sometimes, even cracks may develop. Vitamins A, C and B2 are important for the lips. So, foods like citrus fruits, ripe papaya, tomatoes, carrots, green leafy vegetables, nuts, wholegrains, oats and milk products may be included in the diet. Of course, it is best to take your doctor’s advice before making changes in your diet, specially if you have any medical condition.
Dry, peeling and chapped lips can be due to vitamin deficiency, dry weather, soap and matte lipstick. Have a diet rich in vitamins A and C. Use glossy lipsticks and lip balm.
Avoid matte lipsticks, soap and powder on lips. Remove lipstick with a cleansing gel containing aloe vera. Apply almond cream at night and leave on. Lip balms can also help.
As far as care is concerned, I must mention the skin of the lips is thin and delicate. It does not contain oil glands. That is why it becomes dry and chaps easily, especially during winter.
After washing the face, the lips may be rubbed gently with a soft towel to remove dead skin. Apply cream of milk (malai) daily and leave on for an hour. If the lips become dark, add a few drops of lemon juice to the cream of milk. At night, apply pure almond oil or an almond cream daily on the lips and leave on overnight.
Honey can be mixed with sesame seeds or walnut powder and used as a scrub for the lips. A little almond oil may be added.
Many oils help to soften the lips and enhance their beauty. Almond oil, for instance, is very nourishing and also lightens skin colour over a period of time.
Apply almond oil on the lips at night and leave on overnight. In fact, almond oil can also be used to remove lip make-up. Almond oil contains several vitamins and minerals, including vitamin E, potassium and zinc, as well as monounsaturated fatty acids. Almond creams are also available.
Oils like argan and coconut oil also help to nourish the skin on the lips in winter. Argon oil is native to Morocco, but it is an ingredient in many cosmetic products, like creams and moisturisers. It is rich in unsaturated fatty acids and vitamin E.
As it is easily absorbed by the skin, it can be ideal for care of the lips. The fatty acids also nourish and soften the skin. They improve skin texture and prevent chapping. Argan oil can be used directly on the skin. Use only a few drops directly on the lips.
Coconut oil has also been valued for its nourishing and moisturizing ability. It has a great skin softening ability and helps to make the skin soft and smooth. It may be applied on the lips and is also said to protect the skin from harmful effects of ultraviolet radiation. It has a healing effect on chapped and cracked lips.
Coconut oil can also be used to remove makeup. It can be applied on the lips and left on overnight, or, leave on for 15 minutes and wipe off with moist cotton wool.