It has been 20 or so days of following my routine and I have been noticing some improvements!
- Better oral health care
- Constant moisture (first ten days or so with coconut oil, now with whatever. I try to avoid stick lip balms though, and opt for tube or potted and dab and smooth them on.) I try not to use lip balm at night, it may be too intensely moisturising and take crusts off (unless I want to).
- No coloured cosmetics for now
- Stopped biting/peeling for about four months now, with occasional slip-ups like two or three times a month. 😅
- Letting the crust build up for 3-4 days then gently removing by using "strong" lip balm (that melts crusts) overnight and rubbing them gently when I wake up. I don't think I can go out with crusted lips. It's much better for me to follow a constant moisture with exfoliation if required.
Differences I Notice:
a) Rawness/Raw area
- Before: If lip skin was rubbed off, raw, reddish-pink, inflamed area was seen.
- Now: I cannot reach this raw area anymore. Anytime I rub skin off, a white layer is already there which cannot be removed. The layer seems like its a white line running along horizontally on the middle of my bottom lip. This is the case even when using my "strongest" lip balms which were able to remove layers of crusts completely before. The layer present is stronger, like it's stuck to the lips, and does not come off. It's white when wet and clear when not. When wet, it does not come off, even when gently scrubbed with a toothbrush after brushing teeth (I know I know, bit harsh, but I had to check! 🙈).
b) Absorption of lip balm
- Before: If I put on lip balm at night, it would still be there in the morning, almost like I had just applied it, with some soaked up by the crusts so they can come off. I would say 15%-20% absorbed.
- Now: Lip balm is usually mostly gone from my lips when I wake up. It's like my lips drink it up/soak it in. No, it doesn't just rub off on my pillow on anything. And the weather is warmer and more moist than before, not cooler and dryer, so not an issue of lip balm drying out. The absorption happens during the day too. I would say 65% to 80% of the balm gets absorbed. I try not to use lip balm at night, but if I do, it's not usually a problem unless I use a "strong" one.
c) Peeling after lip balm
- Before: If I put on any lip balm, the crusts would "melt" and start coming off when I removed the lip balm and brushed my teeth.
- Now: I can put on lip balm and it won't make my lips peel after I brush my teeth. If I want to make the crust buildup come off, I apply something more "powerful" (like Vitamin E lip care stick or Chapstick Apple) and gently rub crusts off when I wake up after brushing my teeth, and a white layer is still present (see A).
d) Crusting Cycle
- Before: Dead skin crusted up on the first or second day. On day 1, the dead skin looked matte and grey. No deep set vertical lines.
- Now: Dead skin crusts up on the third day. On day 1, it almost looks like I have normal, dry, slightly chapped lips. Less matte and deathly than before. I have deep set vertical lines.
e) Area that crusts up
Has reduced a lot on the top lip and a little bit on the bottom lip.
f) Split lip
- Before: If split (say, while eating), the area underneath was pink, slightly raw, and soggy. Did not hurt.
- Now: If split, the area is red, scary, looks like it has been cut with a knife. HURTS.
I am hopeful and will keep updating. I will also add in any other changes I notice as well! Feel free to tell me your thoughts, if you have experienced these while being cured (if you are cured now), and ask any questions!