After recently suffering from a head cold—or what felt like a close brush with death—I'm convinced the worst part of the whole ordeal is the dry, cracked lips you're left with no matter how many fluids you consume. (And it can happen in the summer! Don't let anyone tell you otherwise.) There's something about breathing through your mouth that makes you feel guilty for not appreciating all the time you've spent breathing through your nose. The best way to make up for that guilt is to treat yourself to a nice lip mask. Here are three:
Bite Beauty Agave Lip Mask
Three words: deep, intense hydration. It's like the luxe, upgraded version of smearing Vaseline all over your lips. The agave base tastes really amazing, and I noticed that with minimal touching throughout the day, one coat sinks in and can last for long stretches of time. As an added bonus, I used it on my post-gel-manicure weak and peeling nails, and it worked to clean them up and prevent more damage. Worth it.
Kaplan MD Lip 20 Mask and Balm
Throughout my lifetime, I've constantly had the freckles on my lips pointed out to me. Damn you, sun. Also, time to invest in a lip SPF, clearly. This one has SPF 20, so consider it for treatment and prevention. You just slather it on (think Alexander McQueen Fall 2009 Ready-to-Wear) and wait five minutes as it gets tingly. After rinsing and applying the balm, cracks are gone.
Mary Kay Satin Lips Lip Mask
This is the lip equivalent to a thoroughly satisfying Clarisonic session. Just exfoliate for three minutes and put on a thick coat of lip balm (I like Burt's Bees Moisturizing Lip Balm in Vanilla Bean) before going to bed. After a full eight hours, I was left with Angelina-level pillowy lips that make a perfect canvas for lipstick. Wear all day, then come home and do it all over again.
—Morgan Von Steen
Photographed by Tom Newton.
Shanina Shaik gets fruity in six peach lipsticks.