Sun is the source of love and light! While it's responsible for life on earth and the body's requirements of vitamins, it also radiates UV Rays that are highly harmful to our skin!
People use sunscreens catering to the face and body, but when it comes to lips, they are far left behind! The majority might haven't even heard of the term "Lip SPF"! So what is it actually and how does it work? Well, Here is what you need to know about it!
Why is SPF necessary in a Lip Balm?
Sunscreens possess a Sun Protection Factor that guards our skin against UV Rays. Sun exposure makes skin dry, dark, wrinkled, aged, and prone to skin cancer! Most, if not all, apply a generic lip balm and think they are good to go! So why is an SPF necessary in a lip balm?
The skin on our lips is more fragile and delicate than the rest of our bodies. Our lip skin is just made of 3 to 5 layers which makes sun damage much more impactful, and accessories like broad-brimmed hats or masks can barely protect them! This is why you need to start applying a lip balm with SPF instead! It will not only hydrate and nourish your lips but protect against harmful UV Rays too!
Over-exposure to the sun cannot just increase the risk of sunburn but might also form pre-cancerous scaly, non-restorative patches called actinic keratosis or actinic cheilitis.
Does Higher SPF mean Greater Protection?
A higher SPF does not mean a greater amount of protection, it just implies that your lips will stay shielded from the sun for a more extended time!
Do you know how long you can stay in the sun without getting burned without sunscreen?
For instance, if it normally takes you 10 minutes to scorch without sunscreen and you apply an SPF 10, it will take 10 times longer 100 mins or 1.4 hours to burn in the sun. So, SPF increases the amount of time for which you can stay in the sun without getting burned!
If you apply a Lip sunscreen with SPF 15 or 20 You will have to reapply it according to your sun exposure! But if you use Lip sunscreen with SPF 40+, You can go without reapplication the entire day because it will protect your lips from sun damage for approximately 7-8 hours!
Advantages of using an SPF Lip Balm:
1. Guards against UV rays and sun damage-
The most important advantage of applying lip sunscreen is that it will guard your lips against sun damage and prevent further lip darkening!
2. Reduces Pre-existing suntan
Sun damage is the major cause of lip darkening, till the time one realizes this their lips are already damaged! Applying sunscreen reduces the already existing tanned lips if it contains lip-lightening actives like Vitamin C!
3. Protects lips from free radical damage-
Good sunscreens not only protect your lips from sun damage but other free radical damage like pollution, dust, dirt, and other environmental aggressors!
4. You don't have to worry about applying face sunscreen on your lips-
The Question comes- Why can't you apply a face sunscreen onto your lips?
Because many times, the face sunscreens will contain actives and ingredients that are harmful to your lips! Also, they might have a bitter taste which might make your tongue upset!
How to choose the right Lip sunscreen for your lips?
1. The SPF Factor
You have to choose a sunscreen that has at least a minimum SPF of 20. The higher it is the better! As it helps you stay protected for a longer period! Choose a sunscreen that has a "full spectrum" or "broad spectrum" with UVA and UVB Ray protection!
2. Keep the Irritants in check!
Check out the ingredients very carefully and notice if you find anything you might be allergic to, do not choose that particular lip balm even if the allergic ingredients are in a very small amount!
3. Humectants and Emollients
Go for a lip balm sunscreen that has a combination of Humectants like Hyaluronic Acid, Glycerine, Aloe vera, etc, and Emollients like petrolatum, coconut oil, and shea butter. While humectants help draw moisture into your lips, emollients help to seal that moisture!
4. Water Resistant
A water-resistant, lightweight, and transparent sunscreen works much more effectively and ensures your lips get just the right amount of love and protection from the sun!
What to do along with applying lip sunscreen?
1. Follow a proper lip care regime
When you follow a lip care regimen, your lips get nourished and healthy from their roots. Cleansing, Exfoliation, Moisturizing, and Treating are the basic steps to cut off dead and dry lip cells and make lips pink and glowing naturally!
2. Drink water
Stay hydrated. If your body is dehydrated from the inside, no amount of hydration from the outside can cover for its absence! Drink plenty of water every day and remove toxins from your body!
3. Limit sun exposure
Even after applying lip sunscreen, make you limit your sun exposure and do not overexpose yourselves to the sun. Reapply after washing your lips, eating, or as and when you require!
4. Eat a Vitamin and Zinc-rich diet
Eat healthy food and ensure to include eggs, nuts, leafy vegetables, citrus fruits, milk, curd, groundnuts, etc in your diet. Fundamentally, your diet should be balanced with a combination of vitamins and minerals!
5. Stop licking and biting your lips
Stop practicing unhealthy lip and lifestyle habits. Do not lick or bite your lips! Saliva dries out the lip texture and makes it prone to dryness and darkness! Resist the urge to lick your lips! It will not only harm your lip barrier but make your lip care ineffective!
Your lips are a significant part of your body, yet they get neglected the most when it comes to caring! Including lip sunscreen in your daily routine can help you get closer to your lip goals!
It reduces the impact of sun damage and heals lips from within. You have to consider other things too to ensure the lip sunscreen is effectively working like eating well and staying hydrated along with it!