Let your lips go too long without hydration, especially as the temperature starts to drop, and you’re in for some serious discomfort, including tightness, flaking, and painful cracks. This is why it’s always a good idea to have a lip balm on hand that you can swipe for instant relief. Not to mention, it can also be hugely helpful to apply a balm before certain lipsticks (particularly matte ones) to avoid that horrible drying feeling throughout the day. However, not all lip balms are created equal.
According to Healthline, it’s important to look for ingredients that will hydrate your skin in the long term, like hyaluronic acid, glycerin, and cocoa butter. Some formulas that contain waxes or petroleum may feel moisturizing in the moment but aren’t actually going beneath the surface to make a lasting difference. Finally, to avoid any further irritation, you’ll want to stay away from harsh ingredients like micro-abrasives, essential oils, and synthetic fragrances — especially if you have sensitive skin.
To help you find your new go-to for soothing hydration, we’ve rounded up some of the best lip balms for dry lips below.
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The best lip balms for dry lips
Blistex Medicated Lip Ointment ($4; amazon.com)
When your lips need more than just moisture, reach for this Blistex medicated balm that contains pain-relieving analgesics, as well as hydrating hyaluronic acid, soothing menthol, and calming allantoin.
Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask ($17; amazon.com)
There’s a reason this lip mask is beloved across the internet. It’s luxuriously hydrating, thanks to the brand’s proprietary Moisture Wrap technology, which forms a protective film over the lips to lock in moisture. Plus, the sweetly scented balm can be worn whenever your lips need a little extra love, not just as an overnight mask.
First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Lip Therapy ($12; sephora.com)
First Aid Beauty is known for its gentle, sensitive skin-friendly formulas, so you can be sure this lip balm will nourish and soothe even the most irritated lips. In addition to hydrating ingredients shea butter and glycerin, it contains calming colloidal oatmeal for instant comfort.
Aquaphor Lip Repair Ointment ($4; amazon.com)
When it comes to dry skin of any kind, you can’t go wrong with Aquaphor. This ointment comes highly recommended by dermatologists because it’s packed with hydrating ingredients like shea butter, as well as healing vitamin B5 and soothing chamomile essence.
Summer Fridays Lip Butter Balm ($22; sephora.com)
Formulated with shea and murumuru seed butters, this silky-smooth balm provides serious hydration without a goopy feel. Plus, it’s available in two shades, clear and a pinkish-brown tint, and smells like warm vanilla cookies.
Lanolips 101 Ointment ($14; amazon.com)
A cult-favorite product, Lanolips works to soften and soothe dry, cracked skin on the lips as well as elbows, hands, or anywhere else you may need it. The non-greasy ointment is formulated with pure lanolin, which mimics the skin’s natural oils to heal and hydrate.
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Fresh Sugar Advanced Therapy Treatment Lip Balm ($26; sephora.com)
Powered by hyaluronic acid and sugar, a natural humectant that draws moisture into the skin, this intensive lip treatment promises hydration for up to 24 hours. Available in a sheer and pale pink shade, it sinks right in to improve the look and feel of chapped lips.
Paula’s Choice Lipscreen SPF 50 ($9; paulaschoice.com)
The added SPF in this lip balm from Paula’s Choice takes skin protection to another level. It also contains anti-inflammatory olive oil, hydrating shea butter, and antioxidant-rich vitamin E.
Drunk Elephant Lippe Balm ($18; sephora.com)
The avocado and mongongo oils in this formula moisturize and soften while Tripeptide-1 helps to plump the lips and reduce the appearance of fine lines.
Bite Beauty Agave Lip Balm ($18; sephora.com)
The creamy texture of this balm allows it to glide on smoothly and last all day long. It’s powered by nourishing agave nectar, mongongo oil (which is packed with omega-6 fatty acids), and rich cocoa butter for lasting comfort.