Whether you like it bold, matte, neutral or glossy, the most important ingredient to kissable lips is to make sure they’re soft and healthy.

Keep your skin soft, healthy and protected by using the right moisturiser at the right time. From choosing the right lip balm and applying it at the right time to avoiding lip drying ingredients, keeping your lips soft and smooth can be easy.

Related: 3 Dry skin hacks

What to look for in a good lip balm

Although your lips hold a prominent place on your face, constantly exposed to the elements, the skin on your lips doesn’t have oil glands. What you put on your lips is the only source of nourishment and moisture the skin there will get, so it’s important to choose your balm carefully.

An ointment type lip balm with nourishing properties and sunscreen is the best choice, delivering visibly moisturised lips and healthy skin too.

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Using a menthol rub on your lips is tempting, your lips could immediately feel softer and fuller, but menthol rubs can dry your lips out. You would need to moisturise more frequently without the benefits of sun protection or proper moisturising.

Related: Review I tried Bio Oil’s new Dry Skin Gel (and loved it)

Know when to exfoliate

Exfoliating your lips with a scrub or simply with your toothbrush can help you keep them soft. When your lips are dry and at the point of cracking it isn’t the time to exfoliate.

The skin on your lips is thin and more delicate than you think. Rubbing and scrubbing skin that is already damaged could make things worse, creating open and bleeding tears in your lips

Exfoliating your lips when your skin is healthy can help you keep it that way and could even make them softer.

Related: DIY ways to exfoliate your lips

Keep your lips moisturised – seriously

As the winter approaches and weather becomes harsher, your lips will likely become dryer more often. Using oily glosses and lip stains that don’t contain sun protection or vitamin E might give your lips the look you want, but it doesn’t actually moisturise them.

Always moisturise your lips with a good lip balm before using lipstick or lip gloss to make sure your lips are getting what they need and giving you the look you want.