As the weather gets cooler, lips get dryer—making daily hydrating balm all the more important to keep your smackers soft and smooth. The right balm can keep lips moisturized and prevent chapping, which is all too common during cold-weather months, though lips can get dry all year round.
Not all lip balms are made equal, however. Pharmacopia’s Tangerine Lip Elixir is not your average lip balm. First off, our balm doesn’t contain paraffin or petrolatum (both derived from petroleum) or camphor (a chemical made from turpentine oil). These are common ingredients in the mass-produced balms you’ll find in beauty aisles across the country. Our Lip Elixir also doesn’t contain beeswax. Instead, we use candelilla wax, derived from the leaves of the Candelilla shrub native to Mexico and the southwestern U.S. This makes our Elixir 100% vegan, not to mention 70% certified organic. A touch of mandarin orange peel oil gives our balm the slightest citrus flavor. All are reasons our lip balm is so incredible—and gets rave reviews from our customers.
Why Do Lips Get Chapped?
Because the skin on the lips is so thin (it has three to six layers of cells compared to the 16 layers of skin cells elsewhere in the body), it’s more prone to dryness and cracking. Lip skin actually doesn’t have the outermost layer of skin, called the stratum corneum. It’s this layer that’s designed to help prevent dehydration. The skin on the lips also doesn’t have sebaceous glands, which help hydrate skin elsewhere on the body. What this means: daily balm is an important skincare tool to keep your lips soft, smooth, and moisturized.
Other reasons lips get chapped include: extreme conditions (i.e., cold air, dry indoor heat, and dry wind), excessive lip licking (saliva evaporates moisture on the lips), skin irritation or allergies (typically referred to as atopic dermatitis or eczema), and health issues such as hyper- and hypothyroidism. Deficiencies in key vitamins like A, B12, and D; minerals like zinc, iron, and niacin; and omega-3 fatty acids (found in flaxseeds, chia seeds, and walnuts) can also trigger dry skin.
Why Our Lip Balm Works
So … our lip balm is vegan and doesn’t contain the chemical stuff that isn’t great for the skin. But what makes it work to give our fans their fabulously soft lips? Our plant-based ingredients all work together to keep your kisser well … kissably soft. These are just a few of the top ingredients:
- Calendula flower oil, one of our key ingredients, has antifungal, anti-inflammatory, and antibacterial properties. It has also traditionally been used as a wound healer because it speeds up the growth of tissue.
- Castor oil, another ingredient in our Lip Elixir, is rich in unsaturated fatty acids, which are known humectants. This means it helps to create a barrier on the surface of the lips to prevent moisture loss.
- Comfrey leaf extract, found in our lip balm, has been shown to help regenerate superficial wounds of the skin—why it’s so healing to dry, chapped lip skin.
- Jojoba oil is an anti-inflammatory ingredient that helps to repair the skin’s barrier, which protects skin from the elements. Since lips have a very weak barrier compared to skin on the rest of the body, jojoba oil—an important ingredient in our balm—can help.
- Shea butter needs no introduction. Rich in hydrating fatty acids and vitamin E, this fat—found in nuts growing on shea trees in African countries—helps hydrate the skin and lock in moisture. It also helps soothe irritation. One study found that shea butter is more effective at hydrating the skin and preventing atopic dermatitis or eczema than petroleum products. This is why shea butter is also a key nourishing ingredient in our Pharmacopia Body Lotions and Conditioners.
While our balm doesn’t contain exfoliating ingredients (they could make it too harsh for daily use), you can mix a little superfine granulated sugar to a swipe of balm to make a lip exfoliator when needed. Doing so can help smooth out flaky skin. Just gently rub it, in a circular motion, on your top and bottom lip, then rinse off with cool water, and pat dry. Afterward, add a layer of our Lip Elixir.
Other Uses for Our Lip Balm
Our lip balm isn’t limited to the lips. Add a little to nail beds to help hydrate cuticles. (Our larger size—.25 ounce compared to the .15 ounce size of regular balms—makes this easy to do.) You can also keep a tube in the car to add a swipe to dry hands in a pinch (just rub in). Or swipe a tiny amount across brows in place of a brow gel to help shape them. You can even use a small amount to keep stray hairs in place. Our Lip Elixir is good for the skin—and the hair!