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Help for Chapped Lips

After nearly a decade of living here, I've finally come to terms with the fact that we live in the windiest place on earth.  Every spring, it takes me by surprise.  It starts up as the sun rises, tosses around dirt and hay chaff, whips young seedlings and horse tails, only to die down to a gentle breeze as the sun sets.  The wind is so reliable that there is a "wind farm" in the hills to the west of my home.  On a clear day, we can see the turbines spinning on the hills.   

The wind stays with us every day for the entire spring season.  Once the temps are hovering in the nineties and above, when we'd really welcome a bit of breeze to cool things down, the wind shuts down entirely, leaving us until next spring.

I'm learning to live with it.

But thanks to the incessant wind, my lips are always incredibly chapped.  I have little tubes of lip balm stashed everywhere -- in my purse, the truck, by the phone, on the shelf by the back door.  I can't live without my lip balm.

I've also learned a thing or two about keeping chapped lips feeling good.  So, if you're caught at the end of a wind tunnel like I am, try some of these tips:

1.  Hydrate.  Drink plenty of water every day.  Even mild dehydration can cause dry lips.  (Bonus: drinking lots of water makes your skin look brighter too.)

2.  Choose your lip balm carefully.  Medicated balms feel good temporarily, but some can be super drying to the lips.  You might want to switch to a non-medicated brand for a week or so and see if you notice any improvement.  

I’d also recommend staying away from any lip balms that contain orange or grapefruit oils.  Citrus oils can make your skin more susceptible to sun burn, and sun burned lips are no fun.

Flavored lip balms are fine, as long as they don’t tempt you to lick your lips!  I personally prefer the non-sweetened, scented lip balms to the flavored varieties because it keeps me from sneaking "tastes" of the yummier types.

3.  Protect your lips from the sun.  Zinc oxide is a natural SPF, so look for that ingredient in your lip balm.  Avocado oil has natural sunscreen properties, too.

4.  Exfoliate your lips.  That dry, flaky skin can be gently scrubbed away with a soft cloth or lip scrub (try the Sugary Spearmint Lip Scrub recipe I have for you.)  Your lips will be so smooth.

5.  Use your lip balm regularly.  Get into the habit of applying that balm often, especially when you’ll be outside.  You won’t have to worry about chapped lips again!

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