Rosy cheeks and lips have long been considered a hallmark of good health. Researchers say exercise and carotenoids -- natural pigments found in foods -- are responsible for that cheery glow. You can stand on your head, pinch your cheeks, and press your lips together for a temporary rush of color, but the best way to make rosy cheeks and lips part of your look is through a healthy diet and lifestyle.
Exercise everyday. Regular exercise helps keep your blood pumping through your body, carrying oxygen and nutrients to the cells of all your organs, including your skin. Keeping your complexion and lips well nourished on a cellular level is one of the most fundamental steps to maintaining a healthy, rosy color.
Include plenty of carotenoid-rich foods in your diet. Carotenoids are the yellow, orange and red pigments that give fruits and vegetables, such as carrots, cantaloupe, apricots, sweet potatoes and peaches, their natural color. The body stores carotenoid in fat cells where it can be absorbed into the upper layers of the skin. The pigments create a golden glow, the perfect foundation for rosy cheeks and lips.
Exfoliate your skin and lips regularly to remove dead skin cells that diminish natural color. Exfoliating doesn't have to be complicated or expensive. You can use a toothbrush and warm water to revitalize your lips. Uncooked oatmeal mixed with honey or milk makes a gentle scrub that removes dead cells from your cheeks and restores rosy color.
Rub your lips with a slice of raw beet to enhance their natural rosy color. Women in Eastern cultures tout several other natural methods to increase the rosy color of lips. Crushed rose petals mixed with milk or cream can be applied daily to bring back a rosy hue. Pomegranate and coriander juice are also used to achieve this look. Lips often darken with exposure to sun and age. Rubbing lips with a wedge of lemon or lime will lighten them, allowing them to regain a softer, rosy color.
Drink plenty of water. The CNN Health website recommends consuming six to eight glasses of water a day. Water moves nutrients through the body and flushes toxins from organs, including the skin. It also keeps the mouth and lips moist and soft. Water is a key element of a healthy lifestyle that allows you to maintain rosy cheeks and lips.
Quit smoking. Nothing drains the color and moisture from your skin and lips quite like tobacco.
Laura Scott has been reporting for Gatehouse Media New England, Essex County Newspapers and other regional publishers since 1997. She won several New England Press Association awards for her coverage of the fishing industry and coastal communities. Scott is a graduate of Vassar College and has a master's degree in American studies from Boston College. She also attended art school in Italy.