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Suncare Special: Why You MUST Protect Your Lips!

Fri, March 4, 2011 5:27pm EDT by 1 Comment

With vacation time coming up, it’s so important to remember your lips! They’re one of the most vulnerable areas of your body when exposed to sun!

The lips are one of the easiest-to-forget areas for sun protection, but it’s SO important to remember to frequently apply a lip balm with SPF! We talk to an expert to get tips on the best ways to protect this important area!

Dr. Ellen S. Marmur, Associate Professor and Chief of Dermatologic and Cosmetic Surgery at The Mount Sinai Medical Center in NYC, sees so many cases of skin cancer on the lips. She says, “The problem is that removing a skin cancer there, your lip line gets scarred. So even a tiny cancer can leave a scar on the lip that feels disfiguring.”

One of Dr. Marmur’s favorite products is Coppertone Water Babies Sunscreen Stick. It’s thick and no-mess, so it’s easy to apply on your lips (or anywhere else you need it)! Here are a few more tips from her:

  • Try a waxy balm when skiing. The texture will act as a barrier for windburn and will prevent sunburn, which is more likely at higher elevations. You can even use the wand all over your face for full protection!
  • When applying lip protection, don’t stick to the red portions of your lips: you should smear it a couple of centimeters around your mouth, to protect the entire lip area (including the space between your nose and mouth).
  • Choose an SPF of 15-30.

Bonnie warns you that this is a serious matter. She has several friends who have had to have pre-cancerous spots removed from their lips. Left alone, they would have developed into cancer, and they were likely due to exposure to the sun! This is seriously scary stuff. Please remember to arm your lips the next time you go outside!

–Allie Jordan

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