Bridal Beauty: Keeping lips smooth, soft, and kissable

 In How to, Products

Everyone has faced dry, peeling lips at some point in their lives, and it’s no fun. Especially because, as you’ve probably noticed, there tends to be a lot of kissing at weddings. You and your new spouse, for sure, but also friends & family – dozens of people will lean in for a peck over the course of the festivities, and your lips will get a workout. How can you make sure they’re in prime shape for the kissing Olympics?

1. Block ’em. It tastes a little funny, I’ll admit, but using a lip balm with broad-spectrum SPF will prevent your lips from getting dry and sunburned in the weeks leading up to your wedding. You should already be wearing sunscreen to prevent tan lines and blotchiness (not to mention the health risks posed by overcooking your skin), so don’t neglect this step!

2. Slick ’em. One of the reasons I preach against sleeping in makeup is you miss a great opportunity to moisturize. Once your makeup is removed at night and your skin is fresh and still slightly damp after towel drying, apply a rich nighttime moisturizer to your skin and an even richer balm on your lips. (This is especially key if your bedroom is air conditioned and/or dehumidified – factors that can contribute significantly to dry skin.) Internal hydration is also very important for your skin, so drink lots of water!

3. Scrub ’em! Very few lipsticks or glosses will be able to conceal the texture of dry, peeling lips, so be sure to present a polished pout in the makeup chair by adding a new step to your shower routine: lip exfoliation. First, generously apply an oil-based balm (good ol’ Vaseline works well). Next, hop in the shower and let the heat do its thing (thicker balms won’t rinse away too easily, so your skin will have time to soften a bit). Toward the end of your shower, take a CLEAN damp washcloth and gently buff the lips in small, swift circles. Don’t drag the cloth so hard that you abrade your skin, but scrub thoroughly enough to remove the flakes of dead skin. You may need to do this a few times over the course of a few days, but you’ll notice a dramatic difference, especially if you follow your shower with consistent moisturizing.

You can also buy (or make) a lip scrub – Fresh Sugar Lip Polish is one of my favorites, but granular sugar mixed with honey, olive oil, or lip balm also makes a great DIY lip exfoliator! Give the lips a gentle scrub before applying makeup – this step is especially a must for matte/frost lipsticks and stains, which tend to be dry-looking (and drying to your lips), and will therefore exacerbate the appearance of any flaky or peeling skin.

Then grab your beau and pucker up!

Photo: Levi Stolove

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