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The Best Lip Balms with SPF & Why It's Important

By Hannah Prynn - 5 years ago | Updated
Why You Need A Lip Balm With SPF

It’s time to talk SPF.

Usually, when we’re preparing for a hot beach day or just exploring in the sun, we’ll smear our body and face in sun cream. However, there's one spot we know always gets neglected when it comes to sun protection, and that's your lips. Yes, you heard us, your lips. We know how important protecting our skin is, yet how many of us can say we make the same effort with our precious lips?

Plenty at Cosmetify HQ are guilty, but with our low-down we’ve convinced everyone it’s about time they pucker up and protect their pout.

Why do you need to protect your lips?

In a nutshell: the skin on your lips is the thinnest and most fragile, so it’s crucial to protect them from harmful UVA and UVB rays. And remember UV rays can still have negative effects even on cloudy, gloomy Mondays, not just on the beach in Ibiza with a cocktail in hand.

Failure to properly protect your lips can lead to skin cancer, premature signs of ageing and irritated skin. The skin around your lips is naturally very thin and lacks sweat glands, therefore it doesn't have as much protection as the rest of your body. For that reason, your lips often dry out quicker, become chapped and are very vulnerable to sun damage.

There's a common misconception that the darker colour of the lips protects them against the sun, but that's just the amount of blood vessels in them. They actually need more protection, so get stocked up with a potent sun protection product.

Can you put ordinary sunscreen on your lips?

You can, but we wouldn't recommend it. The makeup of your skin and lips is entirely different, therefore they need to be protected in different ways. The skin around your lips is much thinner therefore they need a more intricate formula to fully protect them against the harmful rays of the sun.

Another, slightly less practical, reason to avoid placing regular sunscreen or an spf moisturiser onto your lips is the taste. Many face sun cream remedies contain chemicals which produce an unpleasant taste when placed on your lips. Lip sun protection formulas generally contain natural ingredients with pleasant flavours such as berry or raspberry, which makes for a much more enjoyable sensation.

What SPF should you use for your lips?

Most dermatologists agree that SPF30 is the ideal strength for the lips, which is enhanced by a formula that also moisturisers and softens. Anything less than SPF30 may result in damaged and chapped lips, which are very painful for a few days. In some cases, SPF15 has been known to be effective, however, it's not guaranteed and sun protection is an area where it's better to be safe than sorry.

Applying sun protection throughout the day is the best way to keep protected and prevent any UV rays penetrating your skin.

How often should I apply sun protection to my lips?

Your lips are more exposed to the sun than the rest of your body, therefore they need more care and attention. Reapply sun protection every few hours, maybe even every hour if you're extremely exposed to intense heat. If you're at particularly high altitude, for example you're going mountain climbing or skiing, it's imperative that you reapply lip protection constantly otherwise your lips will quickly become chapped and damaged.

What are the best lip balms with SPF?

So, is any old lip SPF the answer? Absolutely not. Chalky residue? Gloopy consistency? No thank you. SPF for your lips doesn’t have to be a pain, instead you can find a range of nourishing and hydrating lip products that make your pout pop and keep your delicate skin protected. Here's our favourite lip balms with SPF that will keep your pout happy, hydrated and protected all year round.

Ultrasun Lip Protection SPF 30

£6.00 £8.00 (25% off)

Ultrasun's lip balm formula is a true classic and great at combatting dry lips. Infused with SPF30 and blackcurrant seed oil, this balm utilises the brand's special liposome formula to counteract burnt and aged lips.

Carmex Ultra Moisturising Lip Balm Stick SPF 15

£3.29 £4.19 (22% off)

These popular balms not only come in super cute capsules, but they are also highly moisturising and have an SPF of 15. You can use these nourishing sunscreen lip balms either on their own or as a protective base for your lipsticks. They also come in different flavours and tints to add a little oomph to your lips.

Mesoestetic Mesoprotech Sun Protective Repairing Stick SPF 100+

£23.96 £29.95 (20% off)

Working its magic on the lips, eye contours, spots and scars, this does-it-all stick formula contains both physical and chemical UVA and UVB filters to ensure maximum sun protection. It's even enriched with rosehip oil to boost epidermal repair!

Jane Iredale LipDrink SPF 15 Lip Balm

£14.95 £21.00 (29% off)

In come the sun and skin care experts at Jane Iredale, sharing their unique formula which is specifically for your precious smile. This reef-safe formula protects lips with its inclusion of SPF30 whilst adding a subtle tint that makes your pout pop. Choose from nudey pinks to bold reds to set your style on fire!

Ultrasun Lip Protection SPF 50

£7.50 £10.00 (25% off)

For an extra level of lip protection, we recommend opting for the Ultrasun Lip Protection SPF 50. It's the same formula as the one above but with an added level of SPF protection that makes it ideal for skiing and other harsh outdoor conditions.

Bonus tips for your lips!

Make sure you lather up your lips before applying your favourite glam gloss, as high-shine products can attract sunlight.

No matter the formula, keep your lips luscious and oh-so-kissable this season (and every other) with our round-up of the best lip balms with SPF. And if you're on the hunt for all-over suncreams, take a look at the best sunscreen for sensitive skin, the best moisturisers with spf and the eco-friendly sunscreens you need this Summer. Don't forget to check out our suncream sale too to secure a steal on some of your favourite SPF brands.

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