Are you addicted to your lip balm?

Lip Balms

I’ve read about lip balm addiction sometime back but forgot about it until now when I was reminded via a new article on the topic. It’s quite interesting considering many of us, myself included, often say we’re hooked to our lip balms. Why could this be so? There appears to be a couple of reasons according to the feature on WJBF.

1. Psychological need
According to Marcia Driscoll, M.D., Dermatologist with the University of Maryland School of Medicine, overuse of lip balm likely “stems from a psychological need rather than a physical need.”

2. Lip licking
Another factor cited was lip licking which causes the lips to dry out as saliva evaporates very quickly, making the lips feel even drier and hence leading to a need to reapply the lip balm.

3. Ingredients causing lips to dry out or become sensitive
Chapped lips can also be caused by sensitivity to ingredients in the lip balms such as fragrances, colorings, lanolin and even sunscreen which some people have a negative reaction to. In addition, some lip balms contain phenol, which is an ingredient that is also found in some skin peels. On the lips, phenol may remove the top protective layer of skin that seals in moisture and that causes the lips to dry out, flake and peel. While the product may provide temporary relief, continued use leads to an unending cycle of drying, peeling and reaching for more lip balm.

Of course the lip balm companies have been dismissing these as myths but come to think about it, my lips do get dry very quickly with certain lip balms. I have forgotten which are those and the ingredients they contain but I used to think it was the lack of moisture especially under air conditioned environment. Now I’m not too sure since I don’t have the same problem with every lip balm.

So are you also addicted to your lip balms? If so, do you think it’s more of a psychological need or it’s because of the ingredients?


  1. shin says:

    i’m a lip balm addict too *blush*
    i have chapped lips most of the time, but i realised more often than not i apply lipbalm just cause i feel weird without a layer on it :p
    and i quite like the yes to carrots one, but i got it in berries flavour ?

    shin: I need it especially under aircon environment. Think it’s the lack of moisture.

  2. Nikki says:

    I have very dry chapped painful lips at times, and I think I am addicted to the lip balm because of the NEED to “ease” the pain!

    I find myself leaning to the Kiehl’s No. 1 Lip balm ?

    Nikki: I don’t like Kiehl’s very much. ?

  3. Aimee says:

    I found an addiction problem with Carmex, as did my ex boyfriend. It got to the point where if he did NOT apply it every 10 minutes or so, he would have very chapped lips. Very unkissable.

    One day I ran out of Carmex and couldn’t go back for more and that was it. I felt OK. Chapped sometimes, but around the same as when I was using Carmex.

    I bought Carmex again just out of habit, as well as The Body Shop’s Hemp lip balm… and actually, after giving Carmex a rest for a bit, I found that the Body Shop one was exactly what I needed. The Carmex one dried me out, and the Body Shop one actually just smoothed my lips out without giving it moisture that evaporates and leaves my lips dry.

    Aimee: Hmm…interesting. I did read something similar about Carmex somewhere too.

  4. GabrielLe says:

    I used the lip balm almost everyday & before i sleep at night. So dat my bf can kiSs on my soft lips! *tsk tsk*…anyway, i’ve chapped and dry lips due to the antibiotic i’m consuming. datz y lip balm is essential for me! =)
    btw, i love dat pic up there…u make it looks so colourful!

    GabrielLe: Haha…that’s sweet! ? Your bf is lucky! I used to apply lip balm every night for awhile but got lazy…now that you’ve mentioned it, I should try to do it again.

    Thanks for your compliments about the picture. I like to have nice pictures to go along with each post whenever possible. ?

  5. Ms. Blacklace says:

    I hate the feeling of dry lips. So I use nivea lip balm, the repair and protect tube. The best ever! Doesn’t dry me out! I put it on before a work [the ac there is kinda strong!], and after talking, and drinking water, my lips are still soft.

    Ms Blacklace: Nivea is nice? I should try it! I do like Nivea stuff. ?

  6. astrorainfall @ beauty box says:

    The Tokyo is so dry so I’ve got THREE lip balms on standby. My fave is Nivea but I do have a strawberry-flavoured Lip Smacker from LA which gives me a sweet fix without the calories. Is that addiction? Who knows, but I’d rather not have chapped lips which are very painful and unattractive…

    astrorainfall: Yeah, chapped lips is awful. I hate it too. It can get quite painful if too dry.

  7. Ms. Blacklace says:

    For nivea, it depends on what type of lip balm you get.

    I’ve tried their vitamin lip boost- Didn’t really work.

    I’ve tried their cherry lipbalm- Not bad, but gotta reapply.

    Hydrocare- Hair will get caught on your lips! And have to reapply.

    Velvet rose- Lovely scent,moisturising, sheer color looks great on me, but on my mom, makes her look like a zombie.

    Repair&protect- Don’t need a heavy layer, keeps lips soft and smooth, don’t need to apply often, but slightly more expensive than the other ones. But still good! This is my third tube!

    Lip balm I hate: Lip Ice-Just doesn’t work for me. Dries my lips out, and has that sunscreen smell.

    Ms Blacklace: Hey, that’s really nice of you to let me know which has worked for you! ? The repair and protect sounds good. Will check it out soon. I haven’t tried Lip Ice and don’t intend to. Somehow, their lip balms don’t appeal much to me.

  8. De says:

    Erm, I guess I am the only one here who does not believe in using lip balms. To me, it is certainly more of a psychological need.

    I find that every time I use lip balm, it would make my lips drier and peel more. I also think that the combination of lip stick, gloss and balm give me even drier lips, but that is just me. I just dont apply anything on my lips and fingers crossed, they turn out okay. Perhaps less is more…

    Now I wonder if I should follow the same for my skincare routine!

    De: I know what you mean. Some of my lip balms don’t work so well with my lipsticks. I usually use them alone…either or.

  9. Amber says:

    My goodness. I thought for a second you had snapped a picture of my makeup bag in my purse when I wasn’t looking! Yes, I am addicted to lip balm, I feel naked without it.

    Amber: Haha…we must have about the same taste in the lip department then. ?

  10. ann says:

    Hmmm … I rarely use lip balm. When I was in my teens, I read that using lip balm made you dependent on it to keep your lips moist. So, I can count the number of times I’ve used it in so many donkey years.

    Chapped lips has never been an issue for me. Only when I’m falling sick or in a really cold and windy climate. I find it helps to drink plenty of water and not touch yr lips at all even when it’s chapped, cos it’ll only get worse.

    Ann: That’s an interesting point – the one you raise about dependency. It does sound quite plausible to me.

  11. slp says:

    This in one product that I can’t lived without. I was not just hooked but addicted to lipbalms almost my whole life. I used it all day and night. And even before going to sleep. (I used nivea night essential). I have tons of lipbalms and still looking for something new to try. My DH called it “My anti-stress addicition”. It gives me boost i need. Just like caffeine and sugar to others, mine just in different form. (next is caffeine, btw)
    Psychological? Maybe. For me its my comfort thing.

    slp: It’s a very natural thing for me to reach out for my lip balm as soon as I step out of the house. Strangely, I don’t use it at home. For me, it could be a habit then an addiction.

  12. prettybeautiful says:

    i think i m addicted to lipbalm….more like psychological need for my case

    prettybeautiful: Kind of feel naked with it right?

  13. prettybeautiful says:

    yeah yeah! naked is the right word to describe. long live lipbalm! but…the more frequent i use my lipbalm, the higher chances of me misplacing or dropping it =/

    prettybeautiful: Ah? Maybe cos they’re so small. But gives you more excuse to try out new ones! ?

  14. Tine says:

    I reckon it’s more of a psychological need than anything else, at least for me that is. Without it, I feel naked :p

    Tine: It’s likely…I automatically reaches out for one as soon as I step out of the door.

  15. The Skincare Lady says:

    Well, seems that a lip balm addiction is one of the more mild addictions one could have…I’m constantly licking my lips which I know I need to stop doing, but I just can’t help it! For this reason, I avoid fruit-flavored lip balms ?

    The Skincare Lady: I used to lick my lips a lot when I was a teen until the guys kept commenting about me being suggestive. ? So after that, I made myself stop doing that.

  16. Christine says:

    I did not really addict on lip balm. I will only apply them as part of my make-up. but i do apply lip essence quite offen. i did not pay great attention on the ingredients of lip balm products. after reading your article, i realized that i have to watch out the ingredients contained at lip balm as well. Thanks for the Info.

    Christine: You’re welcome! ? I also did not use to take notice until I started blogging…

  17. fwy says:

    My lips peel if I don’t use lip balms. I’m not addicted to it but I need to use it daily.

    fwy: I have to use it when I’m in an aircon room.

  18. Leslie says:

    Did you know that many companies, mainly commercial drugstore ones, actually make their lipbalm so they dry out your lips on PURPOSE. It’s so you’ll keep applying more product and buy more. It defeats the purpose of a liipbalm and makes you spend more money. *tsk tsk*

  19. jenh says:

    Yes i am a lip balm addict i feel am not protected without it,i have a very dry and flaky lips. Sometimes it cracks and bleeds so i need to grab a lip balm to soothe and heal. I have tried a lot searching for the best til i found Carmex, been using Carmex for more than a year now yet still my lips gets dry and chap. I experimented using pure and organic cocoa butter mixed with aloe vera gel, and it works!

  20. sesame says:

    Oh your recipe sounds good. Not sure about Carmex…reminds me, someone offered to let me test it but I was too busy to look at that in detail.

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