7 Ways To Stop Licking Your Lips To Avoid A Cracked & Dehydrated Pout

Everyone has that one habit they wish they knew how to break, and licking lips is definitely a common one. Luckily, it's far from impossible to quit, and these easy ways to stop licking your lips will definitely work as long as you commit to them. Try your best not to cave!

Why is licking your lips so bad in the first place? Dr. Jessica Wu, an assistant clinical professor of dermatology at the University of Southern California's School of Medicine, explained to Today, "Your saliva will immediately moisten your lips. But as soon as it dries, things get even worse. It'll dry them out even more." And, to keep your lips moist as they continue cracking, you're bound to lick them even more. That creates a vicious cycle of eternally chapped lips caused by lip-licking! Bummer.

Luckily, there is hope for you if you're one of the gazillions (yes, gazillions) of people that frequently lick your lips. Health pointed out that licking your lips is often formed as a nervous habit when you're stressed, so the strategies for quitting below include both psychological and physical treatment methods. I recommend giving them all a try so you can figure out what works best for you individually.

1. Know Your Stress Triggers

Bustle's Christie Drozdowski recommended learning your specific stress triggers so that, when they start to creep up, you can be on alert and dodge licking your lips. She suggested seeking out a behavioral specialist if you really have no idea where the stress is coming from in the first place.

2. Apply Thick Lip Balm

Carmex Lip Balm, $5, Amazon

To soothe aching chapped lips caused by too much licking, Daily Makeover advised reaching for a thick and not-exactly-delicious lip balm like Carmex.

3. Use Alternative Soothers

WikiHow advised, "If you find yourself licking your lips while doing a specific task, try and distract yourself by doing something else. This can include sucking on a piece of hard candy or chewing gum. These tasks are great distractors because they mimic you subconscious habit." I don't know about you, but I'm personally down for any excuse to have a lollipop!

4. Rub Oil On Your Lips

Premium Fish Oil Capsules, $6, Madre Labs

Coconut oil is great for soothing chapped lips, but it might be too delicious. If you need an oil that will hydrate your lips and taste pretty gross if you accidentally lick, I suggest reaching for Omega-3 packed fish oil! It's going to taste freaking disgusting (which is the point, right?), but will be so, so hydrating and healing.

5. Meditate

To help reduce stress in your life, consider trying meditation. Bustle's Rebecca Hiscott broke down several strategies for mindfulness meditation practices that are well worth exploring.

6. Develop A De-Stress Ritual

POPSUGAR shared, "Just like a morning ritual helps you wake up on the right side of the bed, a relaxing, post-work routine can help you unwind in the evening. Your ritual can be as simple as changing your clothes, stowing your briefcase in your bedroom closet, or washing your face." I'm thinking sipping on a mellow cup of herbal tea sounds like the way to go.

7. Rock Bold Lipstick

Alright I don't have scientific evidence to back this up, but I suspect applying a gorgeous bold lip color that you don't want to smudge might be a solid motivator for not licking!

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Images: Author's Own; Matthew Kane, Morgan Sessions, Dingzeyu Li/Unsplash; Fotolia; Courtesy of Brands