Flaky lips. Not a hot topic I know, but one that affects all of us at some point or another. Winter is usually the worst, with cold weather and flu season the culprit for our chapped pouts. While slathering on the lip balm with overzealousness will do you a solid in keeping them moisturised, there are times you just need a good lip scrub to clear away the dead skin.
Lip scrubs are also key if you’re a daily lipstick wearer. Lipsticks, especially matte formulations, can have a tendency to cling onto even the smallest flake of dry skin, so prepping your lips with a scrub is a must for a smooth application and finish.
I get it, exfoliating your lips probably isn’t a top priority in the thousands of things you have to do, but I’ve found leaving mine by my bathroom sink with my cleanser means I’ll incorporate it into my morning skincare routine without having to think about it. Giving your lips a good scrub in the morning also helps to increase the blood flow and makes them appear plumper, so it’s a win-win.
The best lip scrubs for softer, smoother pouts
Ready to scrub up? Here are the six best formulations to try, from lip balms with exfoliators built in, to the much-loved classic sugar scrubs.
Lanolips Lemonaid Scrubba-Balm, £13
I first tried this on the recommendation of another beauty editor who called using this “a delight”. She was not wrong; this zesty two-in-one balm and exfoliator comes in a stick format that you just swipe on – no messy fingers here. An exfoliating trio of super-fine sugar crystals, lemon oil and orange peel work to slough away dead skin, while lanolin moisturises and soothes.
Lush Bubblegum Lip Scrub, £6.50
One of the OG lip exfoliators and still one of the best, Lush’s Lip Scrubs are delightful pots of joy. Bubblegum is the first flavour I tried and takes the spot as my favourite for its nostalgic scent and taste. But aside from looking cute and tasting delicious, this scrub really goes to town on flaky lips, using caster sugar to break down dead skin and jojoba oil to condition.
COSRX Refresh AHA BHA Vitamin C Lip Plumper, £22
Stepping away from physical scrubs, COSRX have created this clever three-in-one lip plumper, moisturiser and exfoliator. AHAs and BHAs work to nibble away at the bonds of dead skin while shea butter and seed oils moisturise and nourish your delicate patches.
You’ll probably get a tingling sensation when applying it, but don’t fret: that’s how you know it’s working. I put this on at night before I head to bed and wake up to my lips looking their fullest.
Burts Bee’s Conditioning Lip Scrub, £7.49
Not into a chunky exfoliator? This conditioning lip treatment from Burts Bees uses teeny grains of honey crystals for a gentle scrub, while the beeswax and lanolin base leaves a nourishing mask behind. It’s especially good if your lips are feeling a bit sensitive or chapped.
Dior Lip Scrub, £30
If a boujee lip product is your bag, look no further than Dior. Apply as you would a lip balm or lipstick and let the granules buff away unwanted flakes. Not only will your lips be baby-soft, but they’ll also be left with a rosy-pink tint and a hit of moisture. It’s quite possibly the chicest lip scrub out there.
e.l.f Lip Exfoliator, £5
For a lip scrub that’s easy to apply and won’t break the bank, e.l.f has you sorted. This exfoliator comes in four flavours (mint, cherry, brown sugar and coconut) and is jam-packed with sugar crystals, jojoba oil, shea butter and avocado oil for a sweet scrub that’s guaranteed not to leave a bad taste in your mouth.