Why You Need a Lip Balm Wardrobe This Autumn

Lisa Patulny


Reapplying lip balm is habit many of us cultivate year-round, but this unassuming handbag essential really comes into its own in cooler climes. As with your skin and hair, lips can become dry (sometimes painfully so), making lip balm an obvious fix. However, according to The Huffington Post Australia, checking the ingredients of your chosen lip salve before you dab it on is crucial. Why? In the world of lip balm formulas, there are two types—with petroleum jelly and without—and each has its own individual properties. Apply the wrong one at the wrong time, and your sore lips could get worse.

Essentially, formulas that include petroleum jelly or petrolatum are best for protecting already hydrated lips as this ingredient acts as a long-lasting sealant. "Petrolatum works by creating an occlusive (protective) barrier over the skin. So it does seal the moisture in, however it doesn’t allow moisture to be absorbed into the skin from the atmosphere (some people term this as the skin not being able to breathe),” says Emma Hobson, Education Manager for the International Dermal Institute and Dermalogica.

Click through the gallery below to shop this type of lip balm.


The second type, sans petroleum jelly, are what you need to remedy dehydrated lips. "Many products now contain silicones instead that create a ‘breathable’ occlusive film, allowing moisture to be absorbed externally, as well as locking in the moisture within the lips. Therefore applying lip balms containing petrolatum are often less moisturising than those with added emollients, which allow the exchange of moisture," Hobson says.

If dry lips are what ails you, Hobson suggests opting for formulas rich in beeswax, vitamin E, shea butter, avocado oil, wheat germ oil and dimethicone.

Keep scrolling to shop petrolatum-free balms below.

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