Lipsticks of different colors

From the brightest and shiniest to the longest lasting and most moisturizing, are just a few of the superlatives used by cosmetic companies to describe the benefits of using a tube of lipstick. Unfortunately some of these "benefits" may causing dryness, chapping or even an allergic reaction to lips.

Ingredients that Cause Shapped Lips

Alcohol: only a small amount is used in lipstick but it can be enough to cause lips to become dry.

Matte: matte lipsticks use more wax than oil to give the appearance of a flat, non-shiny look. Since less oil is used the wax tends to dry the lips out more quickly than a glossy or creme lipstick.

Long Lasting : silicone oil gives long lasting lipsticks its staying power because it seals the color to your lips. As the color is sealed in moisture is drawn out causing dryness.

Lip plumper: lip plumpers dry lips because they contain a natural or chemical compound that irritates the lips causing them to swell and appear fuller.

Fragrance: the fragrance used in lipstick is often mixed with alcohol or other oils that dry the lips.

Other Causes

In addition to lipstick there are other causes of chapped lips, which when combined with lipstick can make chapping even worse. Some of those causes are:

Sun exposure Wind Extreme cold Temperature fluctuation Dehydration Allergic reaction to beauty products Frequent licking of lips Smoking

Solutions for Chapped Lips

Keep hydrated by drinking lots of water. Limit exposure to extreme elements. Use a lip moisturizer/balm. One with sunscreen will also help to protect against sun damage Stay away from products with drying ingredients such as matte, long lasting or lip plumper lipsticks. Moisturize your lips before applying lipstick.

Basic Ingredients

Most lipsticks contain these basic ingredients:

Wax: the base that keeps all the other ingredients together and enables it to be formed into and retain its shape.

Oil: gives lipstick its spreadability and sheen. About 60 percent of lipstick is made up of oil and wax.

Alcohol: acts as the solvent in which the oil and wax are mixed and combined.

Preservatives: uUsed to keep the lipstick fresh and ready to use for the life of the product.

Pigments and dyes The color or shade is the key distinguishing factor when it comes to lipstick. Pigments and dyes used vary from natural ingredients to chemical substances.

Fragrance Used in small amounts to offset the smell of the ingredients.

Moisturizer Jojoba, Shea butter or chamomile oil are also added to moisturize lips and add a creamy or glossy finish.

Hstory of Lipstick

Lipstick has been used for thousands of years. Ancient women used crushed flowers, berries and even insects as lip coloring.

Certain colors and shades come in and out of style. There have even been long periods of time when wearing lipstick was taboo. Between the 1600s and 1800s lipstick was thought of as vulgar, obscene, used only by prostitutes or even associated with witchcraft.

In more modern times studies have shown that lipstick and its overall effect visually has come to signify beauty, health and even virility.