Thursday, January 04, 2007

Baby...Turns Out It's Not That Cold Outside

Hey there, sports fans! As you can tell we went on a holiday hiatus for a little while, but we're back with a vengeance. We've been meaning to write a post for a while about how to weather the winter lip-wise. I was hoping that by now it would be cold enough to do some hard core field testing- you know, standing outside in a blizzard with an array of lip balms strapped to my chest- but that hasn't happened yet. You see, winter's being a bit of a wuss. The high today is 63˚. It's just not right. Al Gore, what have you done?!

But we don't all live in balmy New England, so for those of you trapped in colder climes, heed the advice below.

Don't Lick! Contrary to its liquid nature, saliva actually wicks moisture out of your lips and makes them more chapped. Use lip balm instead- if you find yourself without some, "accidentally" bump into your neighbor on the subway such that your lips meet his for a few seconds.

Flavor Saver: Sweet or savory lip balms enable licking. Nix the flavor (or at least the sweetness) and you'll kick the habit.

Drink Lots of Water: Pretty self-explanatory. Water = hydration. More hydration = less chap. Me = math genius.

Go For Sun Protection: Even in the winter you are subjected to the sun's harmful UV rays, which combined with the sun's heat can dry out and damage your lips. Use balms that have SPF 15 or more or that contain ingredients like zinc oxide and titanium dioxide.

Exfoliate: The only thing grosser than dry, cracked lips is putting lip balm on top of dry, cracked lips. Rub vaseline, lemon juice (that might hurt) or a mixture of sugar and honey onto your lips with a warm washcloth or a toothbrush to soften lips and slough off dead skin. Or you can buy some extravagant products to do it for you.

Reapply on the Fly: Stay stocked. Put a (good) tube everywhere. Purse. Locker. Desk. In your gym bag. Under your favorite bus seat. That way you'll never be without.

Stay Covered: The less your lips are exposed to the sun and wind, the healthier they'll stay. Cover up with a scarf or, our recommendation, an awesome face mask.

Apply Before Bed: Lips often suffer the worst dryness while you sleep. Apply vaseline or your favorite balm before bed and you'll wake up pucker-perfect.

The last thing is don't reapply too much. Sounds strange given the "stay stocked" suggestion, but it's important not to get too reliant on (aka addicted to) your lip balm. If you find yourself getting chapped lips even when often you're slathering it on, look to the other factors listed above and make sure you're doing things like staying hydrated and using a good balm.


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