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Lip Wrinkles – What are Lip Lines or Smokers Lines?

Editor's Note: This article has been recently updated with latest information and research studies.

What are Lip Lines?

Lip lines go by a lot of names: lipstick lines, smoker’s lines and even vertical lines. They are a sign of aging that is usually unwelcome. There are many reasons why you might develop lip lines. Lip lines are typically the most obvious above the top lip, but you will also find finer lines underneath the bottom lip. You may be asking yourself if and when you can expect to see lip lines. Throughout this article, I’ll be discussing the causes of lip lines, how to get rid of and prevent lip lines, home remedies and other treatment options, expert point of view on lip lines and other useful information.

Causes of Wrinkly Lips

As with all wrinkles, sun damage is the number one cause of lip lines. That is why it is so important that we take preventative measures early on in life instead of waiting until the damage has already been done. Smoking can also cause lip lines. As you may already know, smoking increases* the rate with which your skin ages. That is why lip lines are so often referred to as smoker’s lines. Smoking also causes lip lines, because smokers purse their lips during smoking and repeated facial expressions almost always cause fine lines and wrinkles when done enough. Finally, the natural aging process is unfortunate to blame. Children make all kinds of faces without walking around with permanent wrinkles, but as we age, our skin loses its natural elasticity and our facial muscles begin to weaken, causing fine lines to turn into deeper creases.

Home Remedies for Lip Wrinkles

Exfoliation is the first tip. People often worry about exfoliating their facial skin, forgetting about the lips. Your lip skin may be different, but it is still skin. You can either look for commercial products specifically designed for lip care or you can make your own. Always exfoliate your lips and the skin area around your lips. Removing* dead skin cells will immediately make the lines less* noticeable. You can also use a moist wash cloth by gently rubbing in a circular motion. Sugar and honey make an excellent homemade exfoliant.

Keeping your lips hydrated is also important. Apply a good lip balm regularly, making sure to get the area around the lips during times when you’re not planning on going out (such as before bed). Look for lip balm that contains antioxidants and incorporate antioxidant-rich foods into your diet.

Lip Wrinkle Prevention

The most obvious method of prevention is to avoid the sun. When you do go out into the sun, make sure you take protective measures. Use lip products that contain SPF 15 and reapply frequently. Ladies should also be used foundation that contains SPF 15, but you can apply sunscreen directly to your face. You can also wear protective clothing, such as hats. Be aware that certain hairdos, such as longer hair and bangs, also offer protection from the sun. Steering clear of smokers is a no-brainer and if you do smoke, you should really consider quitting.

Expert Outlook on Lip Lines

The Mayo Clinic website has a lot of good information about facial line fillers. Some of the procedures they talk about include hyaluronic acid, radiesse and fat transplantation. Hyaluronic acid procedures are good for softening the fine lines around the mouth area. Patients planning to undergo the procedure should avoid aspirin, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications, herbal supplements and high doses of vitamin E. Restylane can be used for minor lip wrinkles, whereas Juvderm is for more severe, deeper lines.

You may also be given radiesse for deeper wrinkles. It can be used to correct facial imbalances as well. Radiesse injections can last as long as three years, but contouring injections last only one year.

With fat transplantation, fat is removed via liposuction from another part of the body. It is then injected into problem areas of the face through tiny slits. Unfortunately, the change may only be temporary. Most patients have to have more than one session in order to achieve the look they want.

When Should You Seek Medical Care for Lip Lines?

It is time to seek medical care when you’ve tried over-the-counter methods and home remedies with little or no results. In addition to medical procedures, there are sometimes prescription creams that can be helpful. It also may be wise to see a dermatologist as soon as you start to see fine lines around your mouth. A dermatologist can tell you how to best combat and possibly treat* your lip wrinkles. The aging process is a tricky thing. It can start to show on our faces at any moment and it is different for everyone. In some cases, genetics also play a role in how soon and where wrinkles will pop up. Your lifestyle choices can also be to blame. Remember, it is never too early to start taking proper care of your skin.