How to Get Rid of Upper Lip Wrinkles
After years of kissing, chewing, talking, yawning, and bad habits like smoking, vertical upper lip lines and wrinkles start becoming etched into the skin. What’s more, the wrinkles and lines that form around the lips can be some of the most severe on the face, causing a once youthful mouth to appear aged and worn. These wrinkles are often referred to as lipstick lines because of the way that lipstick tends to seep into the skin above the lips, taking harbor in those deep lines.
It can be especially challenging to remove lip lines because the mouth and lips and the surrounding skin are constantly moving — and eventually, we’ll all get these winkles. However, there are ways that you can prevent and slow the onset of these lines. You can also treat them with skin care treatments, injections, and laser procedures that hide, diminish, and even erase upper lip lines.
Here, we’ll talk about these treatments and how to get rid of vertical lip lines naturally — and how to prevent them to begin with.
What Are Upper Lip Wrinkles and What Causes Them?
Also called smoker’s lines, upper lip wrinkles appear as a set of fine vertical lip lines above the top lip that span the length of the mouth. These wrinkles are deeper and more noticeable than the lines on the lips, and they can make a person look up to 10 years older than they actually are. Upper lip lines may begin to appear as early as a person’s 40s, although they could set in earlier with bad lifestyle habits, skin care neglect, and other causes, such as:
- Sun exposure: The skin around your mouth is sensitive and fragile when you don’t protect it with sunscreen. Harmful UV rays from the sun can cause a premature aging process referred to as photoaging.
- Smoking: When you purse your lips to smoke, this repeated puckering motion can cause lip wrinkles to carve themselves into the skin around your lips permanently. Additionally, the smoking process creates more free radicals in the body, which are known to accelerate the aging process.
- Alcohol consumption: Alcohol has a similar effect on the body as smoking. It causes the production of free radicals, which negatively impact the condition of the skin.
- Genetics: Some families pass on genes that make them more susceptible to upper lip wrinkles than others.
- Gender: Women’s skin around the lips tends to age faster than men’s.
- Skin aging: After a person turns 20, they start losing about 1% of their collagen and elastin production every year, which causes the skin to lose its ability to recover from wrinkles.
- Oxidative stress: This occurs as a result of environmental stressors, such as pollution and heavy metals.
Static vs. Dynamic Upper Lip Wrinkles
The lips show lines from constant expressions and movement. While in your youth, these lines fade away once the expression stops. For example, pucker your lips and you’ll see lines form above your upper and lower lips. Release the pucker and the lines might go away. Those are dynamic wrinkles.
Static wrinkles stay even after you stop the pucker or other movement. They appear etched into the skin. Static wrinkles happen over time and are usually the ones that cause cosmetic concern.
Treatment for Vertical Lines Around the Lips
Whether you’re reading this to learn how to prevent pucker lines or you’ve already begun to notice them forming around your upper lips, you can take action starting today to lessen the severity of these lines or slow their onset. Below, we will recommend a number of natural treatments you can try at home as well as skin care products and dermatological in-office services, which will be more effective for those who already have upper lip lines.
All-Natural Treatments for Lip Lines
Lemon, sandalwood, clary sage, frankincense, carrot seed, and lavender essential oils are among those thought to combat skin aging and wrinkling. Many essential oils have antioxidant properties, which might help fight damage from environmental toxins that make your skin look and feel older.
Essential oils are generally too concentrated to apply directly to skin, so some experts suggest diluting them with “carrier oils,” including grapeseed, coconut, or sweet almond oil. To be safe, test a small area of the face before applying any natural remedy to the skin around your mouth.
In order to dilute the oil well enough for direct use on the skin, mix 30 ml (one ounce) of a carrier oil and only about four drops of one or more essential oils. Store the mixture in a cool, dark place and apply only a couple of drops to the skin around the mouth after washing your face at bedtime.
[Source: Proven Essential Oils & Carrier Oils To Combat Wrinkles (Science Based) (healthyandnaturalworld.com)]
Facial massage oxygenates the skin by promoting better blood flow in the face, which also helps encourage collagen production as a result. It’s kind of like a natural face lift. When done with a moisturizing oil, your facial skin will feel relaxed and rejuvenated and appear refreshed.
Lemon juice is rich in vitamin C, which restores the skin’s lost collagen. Try applying fresh lemon juice mixed with vitamin E and some almond oil to your skin by squeezing it into the fine lines around your mouth. Leave it on for 20 minutes and wash your face with cold water afterward. Be careful to use it sparingly, however, as too much lemon juice can actually be harmful to your skin.
Vertical Lip Lines Treatment
When getting upper lip wrinkle treatment at the doctor’s office, look for health care providers who are experienced in treating the upper lip area. Even minimally invasive procedures can result in unwanted pigmentary changes and complications if they are not delivered by an experienced cosmetic surgeon.
The best treatments for upper lip wrinkles include:
- Mild chemical peels and dermabrasion to gently remove the topmost layer of the skin around the lips, revealing renewed skin;
- Microneedling to reduce the appearance of lip lines by puncturing the skin to stimulate collagen production;
- Platelet-rich plasma to encourage collagen production with the use of your own blood;
- Neuromodulators, such as Botox, to temporarily and gently weaken the pucker;
- Hyaluronic acid dermal filler injections to temporarily plump the lines; and
- Laser treatment to resurface the skin around the mouth.
Some medical spas and dermatologists use a combination of these procedures to eliminate lip lines.
[Source: An alternative approach to vertical lip lines (dermatologytimes.com)]
Proven Skin Care Ingredients
If natural remedies haven’t helped but you’re not ready to turn to a doctor yet, invest in some high-quality skin care products with scientifically proven ingredients. One of the best ingredients for vertical lip lines is hyaluronic acid filler. This ingredient exists naturally in the connective tissue of your skin. With age, your body stops producing as much of this substance, so you’ll need to supplement it in your skin care routine.
Defensins: The Secret Weapon in Your Anti-Aging Arsenal
Defensins are another crucial ingredient you should look for in your skin care products. These are present in the DefenAge skin care line, and they address signs of aging, including wrinkles and lines around the mouth. There’s a DefenAge product formulated specifically for every part of the face with each one featuring two different types of age-repair defensins: alpha-defensin 5 and beta-defensin 3. These minimize the signs of skin aging by improving skin barrier function, which is key to healthy, hydrated skin around the lips.
Science has proven the efficacy of DefenAge time and time again in clinical studies. One study showed that DefenAge was as effective as Retin-A but without the irritation associated with this ingredient. Studies like this have also shown that DefenAge diminishes not only fine lines and wrinkles around the mouth, but also repairs spots of discoloration, evens out skin tone, promotes skin elasticity, reduces the appearance of pores, and fights dehydration — all thanks to its trusted formulation of:
- Hyaluronic acid
- Vitamin E
- And more
How to Prevent Vertical Lip Lines From Forming
The more proactive you are in your skin care, the more minimal your wrinkles will be later in life. It’s always easier to care for your skin before the wrinkles set in. Perhaps the biggest key to prevention is the use of a sunblock of SPF 30 or more. Some lip balms already have sunscreen in them, which makes it easy and convenient to wear sunscreen around your mouth every day.
You can also make small lifestyle changes to prevent worsening upper lip lines. In addition to limiting your sun exposure, avoid using straws when you drink to reduce puckering repetitions throughout the day. Limit your alcohol consumption and quit smoking at all costs — and of course, drink plenty of water to keep your skin supple and hydrated.
How to Conceal Upper Lip Wrinkles in the Meantime
One of the biggest mistakes women make when concealing lip wrinkles is wearing lipstick, as it can settle into the wrinkles and further accentuate them. Instead, opt for a lip moisturizer without tint. To cover up the wrinkles, use a liquid primer and spread it evenly onto the skin above the mouth with a concealer brush. Use the tip of your finger to dab it evenly into the fine lines across your mouth. Primer will plump up the skin a little to diminish the appearance of the wrinkles. Finish the job with a thin layer of foundation and blend it into the rest of your face with a makeup sponge.
Find More Tips for Combatting Upper Lip Wrinkles
The bottom line is if you’ve already developed vertical lip lines, you don’t have to be stuck with them. With a combination of consistent at-home skin care and dermatological treatments, you can reclaim your youthful lips and naturally beautiful complexion.
Still have questions or concerns about how to get rid of lip lines and wrinkles around the mouth? Visit the DefenAge blog — the ultimate resource for skin care advice! You can also contact our team for more information on our scientifically proven product line.