The Winter Nightmare that are Dry Lips + My Favorite Lip Treatments

Those of you who suffer from chronically dry lips (like me)  that sometimes crack, peel or even bleed, know just how stubborn of a problem it can be. 

Suffering from dry lips also doesn’t always stem from the fact that you don’t take care of them- it can be a sign of vitamin deficiency, dehydration or a side-effect from certain meds. Dry lips have always been an issue for me, but Accutane took it to a whole another level. When you mix all of the above and add cold weather and dry air… well, the results ain’t pretty.

While my dermatologist suggested I use Aquaphor, I find that while it does help with minor dryness, it doesn’t do enough.

Bite Beauty Agave Lip Mask and Lano Lips 101 Ointment were among some of my favorite products of last year. The Agave Lip Mask has a sticky, thick formula that can sometimes be difficult to apply as it can tug on my lips when they are dry to the point of bleeding/cracking. At the same time though, it’s one of the only products that actually helps in healing the dryness and it does so in minutes. What I like to do is “roll” the tube in my hands to warm the product up a bit and, instead of rubbing the mask into my lips, I dab a generous amount all over. It’s one of my favorite treatments to use at night.

Lano Lips 101 Ointment has a lighter formula that’s a bit easier to work with. It’s formulated with medical grade lanolin and I already talked about about it at length in this post. It also brings instant relief to any dryness and leaves a delicate glossy finish.

Most (and by most I mean pretty much all) of my favorite lip treatments come in tubes, which is unfortunate as they aren’t perfect to use when I’m on-the-go. Thing is, with formulas like those, it’d be hard to have them come in a different packaging. This is why Chanel Rouge Coco Baume never leaves my handbag. It has a light, hydrating, glossy (not goopy or sticky) formula that reminds me of the 101 Ointment. I think it’s one of those lip products that’s very much worth the splurge and doesn’t leave any waxy/greasy residue on lips.

Few of my other favorites are Glossier’s Balm Dotcom (Rose is my favorite + get 20% off your first Glossier order right here), Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream and the Pout Protector Vanilla Lip Mask from Complex Beauty.

If you’re looking for something plumping and glossy, then you’d love the Perfect Pout Lip Mask + Lip Balm Duo from Kaplan MD.  It’s a nice duo for exfoliating, plumping and hydrating, but I’d caution you to stay away from anything that’s “plumping” if your lips are peeling badly and/or bleeding as it’ll only irritate them further. In other words, learn from my mistakes, unless you want your lips to feel like they’ve been set on fire.

Some lip balms can cause the dryness to worsen. That’s most likely a sign of a reaction to an allergen or irritant (like fragrance) that the balm is formulated with. Beeswax, Lanolin and Vitamin E are some of the most common lip-balm ingredients and if you notice that despite constantly reapplying your lip balm your lips get even more dry and irritated, chances are you might be allergic to one or more ingredients it contains. Just something to keep in mind.

Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream, Bite Beauty Agave Lip Mask, Lano Lips, Glossier Balm dotcom, Complex Beauty Pout Protector Lip Mask, Chanel Rouge Coco Baume, Kaplan MD Lip 20 Balm. 

Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream, Bite Beauty Agave Lip Mask, Lano Lips, Glossier Balm dotcom, Complex Beauty Pout Protector Lip Mask, Kaplan MD Lip 20 Balm. 

One more thing: dry winter air also makes your lips (and skin) very dry, so get your hands on a humidifier if you don’t already have one. It makes a huge difference, especially if you’re prone to having dry skin and lips during colder months. Drink plenty of water and remember to stay hydrated.

  • My lips and skin get so dry during the colder months, and no matter how often I apply lip balms or face moisturises it doesn’t seem to help! So i’ll try some of your suggestions! x

    Ariadna || RAWR BOWS

  • Eliza Pregmon

    omg thank you so much for posting this! Ever since I can remember I have struggled with dry lips. The only thing that seems to work for me is Rosebud Salve. Haven’t tried these products out so I’ll give them a try!

    xx Eliza

  • Oh dry lips are the worst. I find in winter, my lips dry and burn around the edges. It’s horrid. I eventually narrowed it down to petrolatum in my lip balm (Vaseline….worst thing!) and since I switched to lip balms without, they’ve been fine!

    • Yes, that’s what my derm suggested too, but it did nothing although it usually works fine, but not when the dryness is as severe as it is now.

  • Love the Bite Beauty Agave Lip mask, Complex Beauty Pout Protector, and the Kaplan MD duo! I want to try the Chanel Rouge Coco Baume next!

    Nida | Caked To The Nines

  • I’ve been hearing about Lanolips enough to be curious, they sounds like an all-rounder product!

    Selene Addicted

  • I have very dry lips and they’re always peeling! This post is very helpful. Thank you!

    P.S. have you tried Dior lip glow? If you did, what are your thoughts?


  • I have such dry lips and it’s always so frustrating! I just started my second round of Accutane as well so I know it’s only going to get worse. Some great recommendations, I will definitely be checking some of these out. I’ve been using the Chanel Hydra Beauty Lip Balm and it’s the best I’ve found to tackle the awful peeling lip situation, especially during the night.
    – Ambar x

    • Oh good luck with the second round, hope it’ll be the last one for you! Dry lips is definitely one of the worst sideeffects. So happy you’re loving that lip balm as it’s next on my list! :)

  • Roxanne

    Beautiful post! I also tend to have really dry lips especially in winter so it was very helpful :)

  • Nikola Hessová

    My lips always suffer during winter so much! But I help them to fell better just a little bit, muhehe (evil laugh). :) Because personally, I think that when you help them too much, using many products, then after few few weeks your lips get used to all those products and then lost her own “shield”. They just waiting for you help and do nothing themselves! How lazy! They started to be addicted to all those products! :D So for me the best thing is just do some sugar peeling and use ordinary balm /Labelo or SoftLips/. But I know that this won’t work for everyone.

    Anyway I love your new page layout! So chic, black and white are my favorite. It makes you beautiful photos pop!

    • haha! :) I totally agree, that’s why I like switching between products. Thank you so much Nikola, so happy you’re liking the new layout, makes me so glad to know that! <3 <3

  • Have you tried Paw Paw balm or the bioderma lipbalm? They’re the only things that help my super chapped lips

    – Natalie

  • Lisa Autumn

    Oh this is such a huge problem for me in the winter.. especially as I am really bad at keeping myself hydrated. The chanel one looks so fancy! And you will probably not believe me but I never tried the Elizabeth Arden cream.. haha I know: shocking! But I have heard sooo much about that I will definitely give it a try if I see it at the shops.. Have a great sunday!

    xx Lisa

    • I know it’s such a cult classic, I only tried it a few years ago for the first time but I totally get the hype now ;)

  • I get terribly dry lips in Winter, so this is the perfect post for me! Thanks so much Paula! :) x

  • I have been lusting over the Elizabeth Arden eight hour cream for years, some day I will invest! x

  • I’ve heard so much great things about the EA 8 hour cream I think I need to try that out soon! Great post Paula :)

  • Eight Hour Cream is my absolute faaavorite! I’ve heard a lot of great things about Lanolips, too!
    { Katie Actually }

  • One of THE best dry lip treatments for me are the Clinique Sweet Pots.

  • Kate

    This time of year my lips are always in need of a little extra care. I think I’ve actually got that Lanolips product somewhere – I really should dig it out! x

    Kate Louise Blogs / Wonderbra Giveaway

  • Humidifiers make all the difference. The winters here are so brutal — thanks for sharing these lip balms. I’ve been dying to try the ones from Glossier and Lano!

    Sara |

  • Glossier was on my blog yesterday! I love Lanolips too. And that EA is a classic!!

  • My lips always get horrendously dry, especially during the winter. I’m always on the hunt for new lip balms or treatments to help soften them but I’m still on the hunt for that holy grail one, will have to try some of these. Also just want to say thank you for your lovely comment, it was so nice and really made my day :) xx

  • I used to hate EA 8 hour cream until I used it on my lips and now I am addicted. It really is the best gloss and makes lips look so luscious too! Great post <3 Kelly xxx

  • I really want to try some Lano Lips products, I hear such good things!

    Gemma Louise

  • The Gossip Darling

    I want to try the Bite lip mask!!!! I have heard wonderful things about it!

    Mel |