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Pimple on Lips: Causes, Treatment & Prevention

by Rashi Bahel Mehra |

A tiny dot-like structure that can be annoying to see as well as painful to tolerate- pimple! The enemy of Mankind- Pimple! The one that arrives a night before a special event- Pimple! Now imagine that around the corner of your lips or on your lipline! Heartbreaking right?

Well, Lips do not have sebaceous glands and hair follicles so they can not produce oil or sweat, so what causes pimples around the lips? Well, It's the large size of oil glands and pores around the lips basically, but let us proceed and understand what are the driving factors of a lip pimple!

What causes pimples around lips?

 1. Upper Lip Hair Removal Methods

The skin around our lips contains large amounts of oil in comparison to the lip structure, whenever you use hair removal methods like a thread or an upper lip wax it tends to irritate that area at times leading to little bumps around the lips and on lip lines as well! 

Apply ice after you get your upper lip waxed and take proper care of that area! 

2.  Your Diet 

Eating high amounts of sugar, oily and greasy foods, and starch full edibles can contribute to pimples around your mouth and lips! Sugars and starch can cause breakouts internally and oily and greasy foods externally because when they come in contact with lips and surrounding areas they may physically block the pores.

3. Allergic reactions

You might get an allergy or irritation from the skincare or lip care products or many times expired makeup also contributes to a bump on the lips! 

Always ensure to do a patch test before applying any new product and check its manufacturing as well as expiry date! 

4. Dry Lips 

Dry and Chapped Lips can also scrape the lip texture and cause pimples on or around the lip area! 

Ensure to keep your lips clean and hydrated by applying lip butter or butter mask to provide 10x deeper nourishment and plumpness! If you follow a proper lip care regime then bonus points for your lips will most probably not get a pimple around them!

5. Sunburn 

Many times our lips get damaged due to UV Rays and in turn get further dry chapped and flaky. That flakiness might cause a pimple on the top of the lips! 

Always ensure to apply a lip SPF and keep your lips hydrated! 

6. Hand Foot and Mouth Disease 

It generally happens to kids under the age of 5. It is contagious but luckily very rare! The symptoms range from fever, loss of appetite, a sore throat, and red spots in the mouth that develop into painful sores or a rash on the fingers, hands, soles of the feet, buttocks, and groin!

7.Sweat and Stress 

Sweat causes pimples, and stress drives and expands them! Always ensure to wash your hair after they get sweaty from a workout or a long day! Wash your lips and face daily! 

Stressing and Overthinking might even increase your pimple. 

8. Cold Sores 

A Cold Sore is caused by the Herpes Simplex Virus, which is contagious and spreads through the slightest of contact! It begins with a blister and converts into a sore! It usually heals by itself within a week or two but the doctor's guidance is advised if it stays longer or especially if you experience any bleeding or severity! 

Other medical conditions include Fordyce Spots, Milia, Oral Cancer, Canker Sores, etc. 

Cold Sore Vs Lip Pimples 

Both of them might look the same but there is a lot of difference between the two ranging from symptoms and severity! First off, a cold sore begins with a burning sensation whereas a lip pimple might just begin with a little redness overnight. 

The cold sore's stages and healing process are completely different from a lip pimple! Cold sores are a combination of blisters or a single blister and pimples are painful to touch! You might experience other cold sore symptoms like fever, nausea, etc! Whereas a pimple may just have a blackhead or a whitehead! 

Cold Sores Vs Lip Pimple

Which lip pimple is pickable and which is not?

Although it is advised not to pick any type of pimple or acne, these are the potential risks and if you get that urge to pick them you must keep in mind which kind of pimple is pickable or not!

 White Head Pimple on Lips

Treatment of pimples on lip lines:


Pimples clear up within a week or so, but if they do not and if you experience other symptoms of an allergy or a medical condition it is best advised to consult a healthcare provider! Generally, they will provide a benzoyl peroxide treatment or cream which will heal the pimple! There are various OTC (Over Counter) Medications available that dry out the pimple but again guidance is necessary!

These are a few things that you can try by yourself- 

1. Use a block of ice to soothe the lip pimple. Always cover the ice in a towel or a handkerchief, do not apply it directly to the skin or lips as it may harm the barrier! 

2. Use a butter-rich lip balm or butter mask to keep your lips hydrated and protected from dryness and chaps! Use a hypoallergenic lip balm if you experience any allergic reactions!

3. Ensure that you follow a proper skin and lip care regime by Cleansing, Exfoliating, Moisturizing and Treating them! 

4. Maintain a diary to identify and cut off food items that you might be allergic to! 

Pimple on lips treatment

How to Prevent Lip Pimples:


Since prevention is better than cure you can: 

  1. Keep your face clean by using a gentle cleanser.
  2. Use a Lip wash to cleanse your lips and remove the dirt and chaps
  3. Use mild, skin-friendly, and active-infused products.
  4. Wash off the lipstick and other makeup before hitting the sack.
  5. Have a healthy and nutrient-rich diet!


Although a pimple on the lip might be painful to both look and feel, it is not the end of the world! It can be treated with proper care by having a suitable skin and lip care regime! 

Reach out to your doctor if the pimple does not go away within a few weeks and remember not to associate it with your self-worth and do not let it trigger your insecurities!

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