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Four simple ways to treat dark, pigmented lips

Skin Care
 (Image: Shutterstock)

Hyperpigmentation is a harmless skin condition which is the result of excess melanin production. There is absolutely no shame in having hyperpigmentation because it is very common, especially among people of colour. 

Hyperpigmentation on the lips can be caused by various factors, including excessive exposure to the sun, cigarette smoking, excessive caffeine, pregnancy, certain medications, lack of hydration and allergic reactions to lip products. Another common cause for darker lips is genetics, therefore, the remedies below are not supposed to bleach your lips, but rather improve their appearance.

 There is absolutely no shame in having hyperpigmentation because it is very common (Image: Shutterstock)
Lip balm with SPF

Sun exposure without protection causes an increase in the production of melanin. Our bodies respond this way because the melanin is trying to protect our cells from sun damage. Invest in a lip balm which contains a Sun Protection Factor (SPF) of at least 30. It should be reapplied every two to three hours for optimal protection from the sun’s rays.

 Ensure that your aloe vera gel is completely natural with no other ingredients (Image: Shutterstock)
Aloe vera gel

Aloe vera is a power plant with endless health and beauty benefits. Since it will be applied to the opening of your mouth, ensure that it is completely natural with no other ingredients. If you can get your hands on the raw plant, you can use raw aloe vera gel straight from it.

How aloe vera gel works is through a compound in the gel which inhibits melanin production. On a daily basis, apply a thin layer of the gel onto your lips, and then rinse it off once it has dried. Remember to moisturise your lips with an SPF 30 lip balm afterwards.


This bright, orange-yellow spice also has numerous beauty and health benefits, including its anti-inflammatory power. In addition to this, turmeric acts as a melanin inhibitor which will help alleviate the appearance of hyperpigmentation on your lips.

Mix together a small amount of turmeric with milk to create a paste and apply it onto your lips. Rinse it off after about five minutes and follow it up with a lip balm containing SPF 30.

 Fresh lemon juice will reduce the appearance of hyperpigmentation (Image: Shutterstock)

This is the oldest trick in the book and regular application of lemon juice onto discoloured lips will reduce the appearance of hyperpigmentation. You can apply the citrus fruit directly onto your lips and let it sit for about 10 minutes before rinsing it off and applying an SPF 30 lip balm.

Another way to treat your lips with lemon is with a homemade lip scrub. Simply mix together a teaspoon of brown sugar, a few drops of freshly squeezed lemon juice and half a teaspoon of olive oil. This scrub will not only reduce the appearance of dark lips, but it will also exfoliate them making them feel super soft!

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