Use a lip balm regularly.... Choose a lip balm with a paraffin, petroleum or beeswax base, such as Prevasore, so that it seals in moisture and doesn’t evaporate quickly.
Apply lip balm at bedtime. An extra layer of lip balm can help provide deeper hydration during the night.
Drink plenty of fluids. It will hydrate your whole body, even your lips!
Sip herbal, non-caffeinated tea or hot water throughout the day. These drinks stimulate the circulatory system, drawing moisture into the body’s tissues.
Maintain a diet that is high in magnesium, calcium and omega 3. These can aid circulation and hydration of body tissues.
Eat your greens! Vegetables such as spinach, Swiss chard and green beans are great sources of niacin (vitamin B3) which can boost the skin’s ability to retain moisture. It is important to try and eat at least 5 portions of fruit and veg a day.
Increase your intake of dairy products and almonds. These contain riboflavin (vitamin B2), one of the key vitamins that benefit your skin’s health.
Protect your lips when it’s windy. Stop the wind drying your lips by applying a moisturising lip therapy, such as Prevasore, and shielding your lips with a scarf or coat collar.
Protect your lips when the sun is out. Wear a wide-brimmed hat to shield your lips from strong sunshine and keep them moisturised.
Resist the temptation to lick your lips. It may provide temporary relief for sore lips but saliva evaporates quickly, leaving the lips drier than they were before. The digestive enzymes in saliva can actually damage the skin.
Try cutting out caffeine and alcohol. Both can affect the health of your lips so you might notice a difference.
Avoid extreme weather conditions. Very hot sun, strong wind and low temperatures can all take their toll. Hats, scarves and lip balm are your best defence!
Avoid strong fragrances and dyes in cosmetics. These can cause irritation - some people are more sensitive to them than others.
It’s not good to be dehydrated. Feeling thirsty is your body’s way of telling you that it is dehydrated - this isn’t good news for your lips.
Don’t pick or bite bits off dry lips. It’s very tempting but pulling off these flakes of dried skin will irritate the skin around the mouth and could trigger a cold sore.
If you are getting cold sores on a regular basis, or they are starting to have a negative effect on your everyday life, please seek advice from your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.