You may not go anywhere without your balm, but any urges you feel to reapply are strictly mental. "There is no known inherent addictive property to any of the ingredients in ChapStick," says Julia Tzu, M.D., a clinical assistant professor of dermatology at New York University.
However, some people may be allergic to certain ingredients, and that can cause contact dermatitis or irritant contact dermatitis, which may seem like chapping, Dr. Tzu adds. "If used consistently, the lips may become irritated and require the simultaneous soothing action lip balm provides. This may be the reason why people may feel 'dependent' on the product, even though a simple petrolatum jelly on the lips can also substitute for the soothing functions, while also being nonirritating." See your dermatologist if you experience cracked, irritated, and scaly pink patches around your mouth.
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