Monday, July 7, 2008

Shining Some Light On Warm-Weather Lip Protection

(NAPSI)-With the beach, backyard barbecues and baseball games beckoning, slathering sunscreen has become part of warm-weather rituals. While many are diligent about protecting skin from top to tips, the lips are often overlooked.

Dermatologists urge using lip balm with at least SPF 15 as part of a daily sun protection routine-especially during warm weather, when people spend more time outdoors.

“Lips are more vulnerable to burning and sun damage than the rest of your skin,” says Dr. Charles Zugerman, associate professor of dermatology at Northwestern University Medical School. “Whether spending a day at the pool or an hour outside for lunch, wearing lip balm with sun protection is essential for lip health.”

Since many lip balms have either minimal SPF protection or none at all, Dr. Zugerman recommends that consumers carefully examine labels to find products offering sun protection with an SPF of 15 or higher.

“If your favorite gloss or lipstick lacks sun protection, apply a layer of lip balm with at least SPF 15 first to ensure a protective base,” he advises.

Dry, cracked and chapped lips aren’t limited to cool weather. Given extended time spent outdoors, more exposure to harsh UV rays and the ill effects of chlorine and seawater, warm-weather months are particularly punishing on pouts.

To keep a sensational smile year-round, experts at Blistex offer the following dos and don’ts of lip care:

• Do remember to use a lip balm with SPF 15 prior to swimming outdoors for protection in the water and reapply after swimming to ensure continued coverage.

• Do rehydrate parched lips to prevent cracking and chapping. Drink plenty of water and use a moisturizing balm such as Blistex DCT (Daily Conditioning Treatment), which combines SPF 20 with aloe, lanolin and cocoa butter.

• Do be diligent about using lip balm with at least SPF 15 if you’re susceptible to cold sores or fever blisters, as sun exposure can trigger an outbreak.

• Do streamline your beauty routine with products that work overtime. For example, Blistex Silk & Shine offers a one-step process for protection and shine. It contains SPF 15 and real silk extracts that deliver a light, glossy finish.

• Don’t assume you’re safe on overcast days; 80 percent of ultraviolet rays penetrate through the clouds. Lip balms with SPF 15 should be applied daily for ultimate protection.

• Don’t forget to brush your lips. Use a toothbrush to gently exfoliate dead skin cells and apply lip balm immediately afterwards for smoother lips.

For more tips, tricks and frequently asked lip care questions, visit

During the warm-weather months, lips need extra protection against sun damage.

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