By April Genshaw, Master Instructor
I’ve come across this question several times over the years, and have fully declared that I myself would attest to being addicted. At the age of 18 I lost my lip balm at a friends house one night and actually asked a gas station attendant if he could cover what I was short so that I could buy a new one. Now that is desperation!
Symptoms could include:
*applying heavy layers of balm before bed
*buying multiply tubes at a time; i.e. hoarding different types in your purse or car
*applying multiple times a day (something must always be covering the lip)
*having a tube in pretty much every room of your house
If any of these describe you, you aren’t alone.There is even a website www.lipbalmanonymous.com
In all seriousness there is science behind this addiction. Lets make this simple…….
Lips are Skin. Skin is complex and has layers. The top layer (stratum corneum) is mostly dead/dehydrated cells. As they die they should naturally flake away. When the cells flake away they send a signal to a deeper layer that will produce new plump cells (basal layer). This process is referred to as cellular turnover, which also slows down as you age. When you use lip balm or lip products it locks in moisture creating a barrier. The lips stay hydrated, but since not as many cells are sloughing away, the basal cell doesn’t get the signal for new cells.
Now, when the balm isn’t present, and the lips are exposed, they suddenly are dried out. The basal layer then is in overdrive trying to catch up. But then…. your lips are dry, so of course, more lip balm! The basal layers gets the “Never mind we’re fine signal” and it’s a cycle. We have trained our lips to rely on this hydrating protective barrier. Decide for yourself if you’re addicted or wanting to continue with your addiction. I personally will continue. I just love the feeling of lip balm/lipstick or lipgloss. It just makes me Happy! We all have those double lipgloss days.