Is SPF For Lips Really That Important? We Find Out

SPF for Lips

If there’s one skincare product we’ve come to value more than anything in the last few years, it’s got to be sunscreen. No skin routine is complete without that trusted SPF. But if you’re slathering sunscreen on your face and forgetting your lips, hold on — because lip sunscreen or SPF for lips is a thing too and an oft-forgotten one!

We spoke to a skin expert to find out whether lip SPFs really are that important and how they can help. Dr Madhuri Agarwal, Founder and Medical Director of Yavana Skin Aesthetics, says, “Yes, lip sunscreen is extremely important as lips too are exposed to the sun. Without SPF protection, over time, one can develop lip pigmentation, signs of ageing on the lips, or an allergic condition actinic cheilitis, or even lip cancer.” Actinic cheilitis is a precancerous condition that occurs due to long-term exposure to the sun. Its symptoms include discolouration and rough, scaly patches on the lips.

Understanding SPF for Lips

What’s clearly evident is that the skin on your lips is thinner and definitely more delicate than the skin on the body, making it more susceptible to sun damage, which is why it’s extremely important to protect those kissers with some SPF!

So, what strength of SPF is good for lips? “While SPF 30 and over is preferable, you can choose one between SPF 15-30 as well rather than no lip sunscreen at all,” says Dr Madhuri, adding, “And ensure it has a UVA protection too along with UVB protection, that is, it should be broad spectrum.” Also, just like you’d reapply sunscreen on the face and body for continued protection, Dr Madhuri advises reapplying lip sunscreen throughout the day as well.

Here are our picks of 8 lip protectors and balms with SPF to protect your pretty pout…

iS Clinical LIProtect SPF 35

This botanical-based, antioxidant-rich lip treatment combines gentle all-physical transparent sunscreen actives with vitamin E and coconut oil to help condition, hydrate and soften lips. Elderberry extract and linoleic acid help defend the delicate skin of the lips from environmental stressors. It offers powerful broad-spectrum protection with SPF 35 and helps minimise the visible effects of photodamage and pollutants.

Bobbi Brown Lip Balm SPF 15<

If you love your small tin containers, you’ll love this cutesy lip balm with SPF! Boosted by skin-nourishing botanicals and extracts, it comes with avocado, olive, and wheat germ oils to help comfort lips, petrolatum to rehydrate, and beeswax and aloe vera to help condition and smooth lips while the SPF protects against sun damage.

POPxo First Kiss Lip Balm SPF 15


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by #MyGlamm (@myglamm)

This bright-as-sunshine twist-up SPF-enriched clear lip balm comes with vitamin E and shea butter that helps condition the lips, heal any chapping and nourish lips, while SPF keeps sun damage at bay. It helps reduce signs of ageing and fine lines for smoother lips.

Kiehl’s Butterstick Lip Treatment SPF 25

This hydrating and smoothing balm with a nourishing blend of oils and butters comes in four
different variants with four tinted and non-tinted options. Made with coconut oil, it melts
onto the lips while its antioxidants, including lemon butter, combined with broad spectrum
SPF 25 provide year-round protection for lips. With regular use, lips feel and look softer,
smoother and more moisturised, and stay hydrated for up to 12 hours after application.

Avène High Protection Lip Balm SPF 30

A high-protection sunscreen stick for sensitive lips, this is water-resistant and transparent. It
offers broad-spectrum UVB and UVA protection. Its non-oily texture offers a comfortable
application and wear, and it also contains Avène Thermal Spring Water which has natural
soothing and anti-irritating properties.

L’Occitane Shea Lip Balm SPF 30

Enriched with 5% shea butter, this SPF 30 lip balm helps to nourish and soften dry lips, while
protecting them from UV rays. It leaves lips feeling comfortable and hydrated, with a
delicate shea scent.

Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Lip Protectant SPF 15

This all-weather lip protectant treats your lips to 8-hr care, helps relieve chapping and
cracking, and guards against the damaging effects of UV exposure with SPF 15. It is available
in a few tinted variants like blush, berry, plum and also in a clear one.

Neutrogena Norwegian Formula Daily Lip Balm SPF 15

If you prefer fragrance-free lip products, then opt for this one from Neutrogena that
moisturises, softens, smoothes and protects dry, chapped lips without that waxy feel. It
contains a PABA-free SPF 15 sunblock for added protection.


More From

Generic selectors
Exact matches only
Search in title
Search in content