does licking your lips make them dry

Does Licking Your Lips Make Them Dry? (4 Effective Things to Do)

Does Licking Your Lips Make Them Dry?

In the quest for soft, supple lips, many of us find ourselves engaging in the common habit of licking our lips. It seems like a quick and easy solution, but have you ever wondered if this habit might be doing more harm than good? In this article, we’ll explore the age-old question: Does licking your lips make them dry?

The Mechanics of Lip Licking

Licking your lips can provide temporary relief, as the saliva on your tongue adds moisture to the skin. However, this relief is short-lived. Saliva contains enzymes that are meant to aid in digestion, and when applied to the delicate skin on your lips, these enzymes can actually break down the natural oils that keep your lips hydrated.

The Drying Effect of Lip Licking

does licking your lips make them dry

So, how does licking your lips lead to dryness? The answer lies in the natural oils that your skin produces to keep itself moisturized. When you lick your lips, the saliva evaporates, taking with it those essential oils. As a result, your lips are left drier than before, prompting you to lick them again in a never-ending cycle.

Moreover, constant lip licking can disrupt the outer layer of the skin, leading to irritation and further exacerbating the dryness. This is especially true in harsh weather conditions, such as cold and windy environments, where the combination of saliva evaporation and external elements can leave your lips feeling parched.

Understanding the Lip Barrier

To comprehend why licking your lips can be detrimental, it’s crucial to understand the lip barrier. The outer layer of your lips is thin and lacks the protective layer of hair or sweat glands found on other parts of your body. As a result, the lips are more susceptible to moisture loss. When you consistently lick your lips, you compromise this natural barrier, making it easier for external factors to cause dryness.

Breaking the Habit: Alternative Solutions

Breaking the lip-licking habit is the key to maintaining soft, hydrated lips. Instead of relying on this temporary fix, consider incorporating these alternative solutions into your daily routine:

does licking your lips make them dry
  1. Hydration: Drink plenty of water to keep your entire body, including your lips, well-hydrated.
  2. Lip Balm: Invest in a high-quality lip balm with moisturizing ingredients like beeswax, shea butter, or coconut oil. Apply it regularly to create a protective barrier on your lips.
  3. Humidifier: Use a humidifier in your living or sleeping space, especially during dry weather, to add moisture to the air and prevent your lips from drying out.
  4. Healthy Diet: Consume foods rich in vitamins and minerals, as they play a crucial role in maintaining skin health.


In conclusion, the age-old habit of licking your lips may provide momentary relief but can contribute to long-term dryness and discomfort. Understanding the mechanics of why this happens and adopting alternative solutions is essential for achieving and maintaining soft, supple lips. Break the cycle, prioritize proper lip care, and say goodbye to the dryness that comes with excessive lip licking.

does licking your lips make them dry

Remember, the road to hydrated lips starts with breaking the lip-licking habit and embracing healthier alternatives. Your lips will thank you for it in the long run.

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