Lips are one of the most vulnerable parts of the body when it comes to sunburns. They are very exposed, just like the whole face is, and they have no hairs to protect them. That is not all, they do not even have oil glands to lubricate them like the rest of the skin.
When the lips are not protected from the sun, they easily become sunburned, which makes them look dull, flaky, scaly, pale or pink. Sunburned lips are also very painful. The skin breaks easily, which may lead to bleeding and infections.
Treatment for sunburned lips
The first thing to do when the lips are damaged by the sun is to apply cold to reduce the pain and irritation. It is best to use cold, wet compresses or to apply ice cubes wrapped in clean washcloth. Another great way to cool the lips down is to eat popsicles. It is also important not to lick the lips.
One of the best remedies for sunburned lips is potato juice. Potatoes contain starch, which has a cooling effect. The juice should be made from one raw potato, washed, peeled and sliced into small cubes. The cubes should be placed in a food processor, until a smooth paste is obtained. The paste should be strained through a cheesecloth in order to obtain the juice. However, this remedy works just fine even without straining the mass. Potato juice should be applied to the lips several times a day.
Aloe vera is one of the most efficient plants when it comes to skin damage. It is best to use fresh aloe juice, obtained from a sliced aloe leaf, but store-bought gels work just as well.
Another way to soothe the sunburned lips is to use clarified butter. This is done by taking a chink of unsalted butter, melting it until it is clear and then straining the milk solids. This is a great natural moisturizer that works well on chapped lips too.
How to avoid sunburned lips
It is always better to prevent than to cure, and this goes for sunburned lips too. It is important to remember that, just like the rest of the body, the lips need protection from the sun too. Lip balms with sunscreen are widely available in drugstores and supermarkets, especially in the summer. It is recommended to choose lip balms with SPF 15 or higher and to apply it frequently during exposure to the sun. It is best to apply lip balms with SPF before even leaving the house and to re-apply every hour or so, because it gets worn out due to eating, drinking, smoking or licking the lips.