Is it possible to have lips allergic to lipstick? Or lip balm?
If you’re noticing dryness, flaking, irritation, redness, or other similar symptoms, it may be time to check your lip products.

Are your lips allergic to lipstick
Lips Allergic to Lipstick: What Are the Symptoms?
It can be difficult to tell the difference between chapped, irritated lips and an allergic reaction on the lips.
Here are the signs to look for that may indicate you’re suffering from an allergic reaction to your lip care products:

Swelling of the lips or area around the lips
Small blisters
Burning and itching
A red, irritated reaction that may spread to the face and neck
Redness, scaling, or dryness and itch that stops once you stop using the product
On light skin, redness develops—on dark skin, areas of the lip may turn dark brown, purple, or reddish
Crusting at the corners of the mouth

A lip allergy can be tricky to figure out. Unlike food or other types of allergies, it may not develop immediately after you apply the product. Instead, the reaction may be delayed by hours or even days.
You can take note, though, of the severity of your chapped lips. If your lips are just a little dry, then an allergy probably isn’t to blame. But if you feel like you have extremely chapped lips with a lot of redness and flaking, it may be time to take a look at the products you’re using.

Lips Allergic to Lipstick: What Happens
An allergic reaction is a sign that your immune system sees something in your lipstick or lip balm that it thinks is dangerous for you.
Even if you’ve used the product for months or years without a problem, if you suddenly start noticing that your lips seem irritated, it could be that your immune system has changed its mind about the product.
This can happen simply because of repeated exposure. But it may also occur if the skin barrier on your lips is damaged. Maybe you have dry skin or flakes on your lips. These allow the ingredients in your lip products to better penetrate the skin. Whereas these may not have bothered you before, now they are more “visible” to the immune system because of the damaged skin barrier.
The immune system reacts to this supposed threat by rushing a variety of immune cells to the site of the invasion: your lips. This causes the redness, dryness, inflammation, and other symptoms you may be experiencing.
As to why your immune system may react this way, scientists still aren’t sure. We do know, however, that some ingredients are more likely to inspire a reaction than others. According to DermNet—a world-renowned online resource about the skin—lipsticks and lip care products “are the commonest cause of allergic contact cheilitis in women.”
Allergic contact cheilitis is an allergic reaction that causes inflamed lips. It usually affects the outer lip or area where the skin and red lip meet.
Ingredients That Can Make Your Lips Allergic to Lipstick or Lip Balm
Though you can develop an allergy to just about anything, there are some ingredients that in lip products that are known to more commonly inspire sensitivities.
Ingredients in lip products that may cause allergic reactions include:

Chemical sunscreens like benzophenone-4, octinoxate, and oxybenzone
Preservatives (parabens, formaldehyde, ureas, quaternium)
Artificial colors and dyes
Occlusives (petrolatum)
Mineral oil
Exfoliants (salicylic acid and phenol)

If you suspect an allergy, see your allergy specialist. They may do allergy patch skin testing to find potential allergens. You can also try a patch test yourself. Apply a little bit of the product to another area of your skin and wait for several hours or days to see if it reacts.
Keep in mind that the skin on the lips is thinner and more vulnerable than other areas. So even if other areas of your skin don’t react to a product, your lips may still be allergic to it. If you notice symptoms of redness or extremely chapped lips, stop using the product for several weeks to see if that helps reduce symptoms.

What To Do with Lips Allergic to Lipstick or Lip Balm
If you suspect you may be allergic to a lip product you’re using, follow these tips to help your lips feel and look better.
1. Stop using the suspected product.
This is always the first step in addressing any allergy. Simply stop exposing your lips to the suspected allergen. If you’re not sure which one may be causing the issue, stop using them all for at least a couple of weeks. That includes lipsticks, lip glosses, lip liners, and chapsticks or lip balms.
If one of your products was the culprit, you should notice some improvement within a week or so.
2. Use a product less likely to cause allergies.
While you’re waiting to see if your lips recover, you’ll need something to help moisturize them. What should you use?
We recommend our Restorative Skin Balm. It’s a one-hundred percent natural, non-petrolatum healing balm that instantly softens severely dry and chapped skin. Awarded the “Best All-Around Healing Balm” by Healing Lifestyles and Spas, it has no fragrances or dyes. It uses natural ingredients like calendula and arnica to help heal the skin.
We do include castor oil and lanolin in the product for their superior moisturizing properties. Lanolin is often recommended for people who are allergic to other ingredients because it allows the skin to breathe while creating a barrier against moisture loss.
If you are allergic to either of these ingredients, however, try another natural moisturizer like one of the following:

Pure shea butter
Pure coconut oil

3. Test your products one by one.
Once your lips are healed, test your lip products one by one. Apply one to your lips and wait at least a week to see if you notice any reactions. If you do, take note of the ingredients in the product. Write them down, then discard the product and move on to the next one.
This process can take some time, but eventually, you may have several ingredients written down that were in the offending products. You can compare these lists to see if you notice similar ingredients in more than one product. Writing these down can give you a starting list of ingredients to avoid in your lip care products.
Have you noticed symptoms of a lipstick allergy?
Featured image courtesy of Ron Lach via Pexels.

Source link