A little nudge is all they need to keep your secret.
You might smoke a cigarette a day, maybe even two. You might even go through a whole pack in one day. Well, we’re sure you’ve heard them say, “Smoking is injurious to health!” What they’re not spelling out for you is, “Smoking is injurious to your beauty, too!” It’s a nightmare that starts out drying your skin, especially your lips and then goes on to strip them of their colour, making them appear darker. And as if that wasn’t enough, the constant puckering of your lips to grip the cigarette gives rise to fine lines over time.
Now that’s one reason to kick the butt right away. But what if you can’t? What if you don’t want to? Can your lips keep your secret? Well, more on that later. First, let’s get to the bottom of how and why this happens.
Shedding light on the “smoker’s lips” syndrome
Did you know it takes more than 4000 chemicals to make up cigarette smoke? And most of these affect you in one way or another. As for the darkening of your lips, there are four reasons why this happens.
Tobacco and tar
Present in cigarettes in an abundantly large amount, these key contents stain not only your lips but also your teeth and gums. Over time, your lips will begin to appear blackish-blue.
Your skin cells release melanin when they sense heat and UV light from the sun. Now melanin is responsible for your skin colour. The more of it you have, the darker your skin is. So when the skin cells around your lips sense heat from the cigarette, they spring into action and release melanin. Although it’s just your skin’s way of protecting your body from the heat, the excess melanin ends up making the area dark.
There are tiny capillaries present under the surface of your lips. The blood running through these capillaries are responsible for their rosy hue. Now the more you smoke, the weaker these capillaries get. With pressure from the toxins present in smoke, they ultimately give way and burst. When that happens, your rosy lips get clouded with hues of black.
Lack of oxygen
Among the 4000 chemicals that make up cigarette smoke, is the potentially lethal carbon monoxide. When you inhale this gas, it interferes with your blood stream and reduces the supply of oxygen circulating through your body. One of the outcomes is bluish-blackish lips.
How to get rid of that smoker’s pucker
Although there are quite a few remedies to lighten up smoker’s lips, nothing works as effectively as quitting. A big shout-out to you if you’re trying to do so. Here’s what you can do in the meanwhile.
- Water helps… a lot. The more you drink, the more toxins of nicotine it helps flush out from your body.
- Those fresh fruits and veggies are loaded with nutrients responsible for lightening skin. We know you already know! But gorging on fruits and vegetables can help compensate for all the harm smoking does to your body.
- Speak to your doctor about Vitamin C and Vitamin E supplements. These vitamins do a great job by speeding up the process of tissue renewal. In due course you will notice your dark lips appear brighter than before.
- Use a lip scrub. There are a number of such products available in the market today. Choose one that best suits your skin type and apply away. At least twice a week for best results.
- There are a couple of natural remedies you may try, too. Lemon (being a natural bleaching agent), can be used to correct stained lips. You could also apply some almond oil (a natural skin lightener) over your lips before going to bed every night.
Now the thing with these treatments is that they aren’t magical formulas that can transform dark lips overnight. If you’re looking for something that works a bit faster, fortunately there are non-surgical cosmetic procedures like Kaya lipcraft available today. Kaya lipcraft uses three key techniques to give you luscious lips: peels to gently exfoliate and replenish lips, advanced lasers to lighten them, and lip fillers to create contour and add volume. Over a series of sessions, you will be looking at brighter lips.
No prizes for guessing the best remedy ever
Quit! Or else you’ll have to make some tough choices down the line, one of them being between beautiful lips and the habit. Perhaps this should make the choice easier. Dark lips and fine lines around the mouth are not the only outcomes. The habit gradually catches up with the rest of your appearance, giving you dark circles, puffy eyes, yellow teeth, thinner hair and fine lines. But it doesn’t stop there! And over time, no amount of nudging will work. So it all comes down to your choice. Will you or won’t you?