How to Make Natural Lip Scrubs for Chapped Lips

(Last Updated On: August 3, 2018)

While the idea of exfoliating the skin on our face and our bodies is very commonplace, the idea of exfoliating lips is not as well known. In the wintertime especially, lips get dry, chapped and flakey and those flakes won’t come away with moisturizing alone.

That’s where lip scrubs come in. They gently slough away the loose flakey skin and moisturize at the same time to leave lips smooth and soft.

But lip scrubs don’t just have to be for emergencies, regular use of a moisturizing lip scrub can stop the dry chapped lips from happening in the first place. And as the old saying goes, an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure.

Like any other skin scrub, a lip scrub uses a granular substance to exfoliate the surface layer of skin when you rub it over your lips. But unlike body scrubs your homemade lip scrubs are  perfectly safe to ingest and they taste great, so that scrubbing is enjoyable, which will encourage you to keep it up.

Advantages Of Using a Lip Scrub

Removing the rougher surface skin from your lips reveals the softer skin underneath, making lips fresh and smooth again.

With a smooth surface, lipstick glides onto your lips more easily, it will last longer and be less likely to bleed.

Lip exfoliation that moisturizes and protects at the same time leaves your lips more hydrated and able to retain moisture for longer, which helps to prevent cracked lips.

If you use a moisturizing and exfoliating lip scrub regularly, you won’t have to worry about cold, dry air or harsh winter winds sapping the moisture from your lips.  

How Often Can You Use A Lip Scrub?

Most beauty experts recommend using a lip scrub at least once a week and more often during cold winter weather.

Since it only takes a minute to exfoliate your lips, it’s easy to do and simple to fit into your routine. An ideal time to use a lip scrub is at night after you’ve cleaned your teeth.

You can buy ready made lip scrubs but as they are so simple to make there really isn’t any point. You’ve probably already got lip scrub ingredients in your kitchen, so you could even go and make one right away.


Lip Scrub Ingredients

At its most basic a lip scrub is simply a moisturizing lubricant and an exfoliant. The exfoliant can be a granular exfoliant that physically removes the dry and dead skin as it comes into contact with it, or it can be an enzymatic exfoliator which digests the dead upper layer of skin.

Exfoliators

Enzymatic exfoliates are the most gentle method of banishing the rough old surface layer of skin from anywhere on your body. Unlike granular exfoliators they will never take too much skin away and leave your skin scratchy or sore as they are only able to digest the uppermost layer of skin.

Many enzymatic exfoliators are extracted from fruit, and lemon juice is particularly effective, very easy to get hold of and super cheap.

An enzymatic exfoliator takes a little while to work its magic though so if you need some fast exfoliation before you slick on your lipstick and run out of the door, choose a gentle granular exfoliant instead.

One of the gentlest granular exfoliants that you can use is sugar, and sugar gives you the bonus of being an enzymatic exfoliator too. Other gentle exfoliants are oatmeal and coffee grounds.

Oatmeal is a great choice while you are at home, but if you want a portable lip scrub to take out with you to use midway through the day (if your lips are very chapped ) then stick with a sugar based scrub.

Lubricants

The lubricant can serve two purposes. One is to allow the granular exfoliant to glide across your lips without dragging too much, and the other, for certain lubricants, is to add moisture. Any natural oil will add moisture, but if you used vaseline for example, you wouldn’t add any hydration to your lips. Vaseline can stop moisture already present in your lips from escaping though, so it’s a valid choice.

Extra lip scrub ingredients include moisturizers and flavoring.

In addition to the moisturizing oil that you choose for your lip scrub your can make it even more richly moisturizing with some additional ingredients, like raw honey, aloe vera, or shea butter.

And as for flavors, you can make your lip scrub fruity, minty, spicy, or even coffee or chocolate flavored and if you use virgin coconut oil as your base/lubricant you can have tropical coconut flavor.

Equipment You’ll need

  • A small bowl or cup to mix your ingredients in.
  • A little lidded pot to keep your finished scrub in.
  • A measuring spoon.
  • A tea spoon, for mixing and to transfer your scrub to your storage pot.

Homemade Lip Scrub Recipes

Homemade Lip Scrub

Honey Sugar Lip Scrub

  • 1 teaspoon of virgin coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon of raw honey
  • 1.5 – 2 tablespoons of granulated brown sugar
  • dash of lemon juice

Mix these ingredients together to make a paste, then transfer over to your storage jar.

Use a soft bristle toothbrush or you finger to dip into the scrub and then apply the scrub to your lips using soft circular motions and let it sit for a minute or two.

Rinse off with water, then apply a lip balm or a moisturizing lipstick/gloss.

Coconut oil contains medium chain fatty acids that are incredibly moisturizing.

Raw honey is a potent natural antibacterial and an effective moisturizer. Honey is a humectant which means that it can draw moisture from the air and transfer it to your skin.

Brown sugar produces glycolic acid/alpha hydroxy which is an enzymatic exfoliant and a gentle physical exfoliator.

Lemon Juice will brighten skin and provides enzymatic exfoliation.

Chocolate Peppermint Lip Scrub

  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon castor oil
  • ½  teaspoon cocoa
  • ½  teaspoon coffee grounds
  • apx. 3 drops of peppermint oil extract

Mix the coffee grounds and the cocoa powder together in a cup.

In a separate cup combine the castor oil, brown sugar and peppermint oil.

Add the coffee, cocoa mixture to the oil and sugar and mix well.

Transfer to your storage pot.

Use a soft bristle toothbrush or you finger to dip into the scrub and then apply the scrub to your lips using soft circular motions and let it sit for a minute or two before rinsing off. Apply lip balm afterwards.

Castor oil is a very rich moisturizer with the ability to penetrate deeply into your skin and deliver deep down moisture. It’s inexpensive and easy to find at your local pharmacy.

The coffee grounds act as a physical exfoliator while the sugar provides both types of exfoliation.

Coco adds a chocolate flavor and a rich dark color to the scrub, and peppermint oil gives you a nice minty touch.

Honey Vanilla Lip Scrub

  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • ½  teaspoon honey or agave nectar
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • ¼  teaspoon vanilla extract

Mix the honey or agave nectar with the olive oil.

Stir in the brown sugar, then add the vanilla extract.

Transfer the mixture to your container to store.

Use a soft bristle toothbrush or you finger to dip into the scrub and then apply the scrub to your lips using soft circular motions and let it sit for a minute or two. Rinse off then apply a moisturizing lip balm.

Olive oil is a great moisturizer that you’ve probably got sitting in your kitchen cupboard right now.

The sugar exfoliates, and the honey adds more moisture to your lips. A few drops of vanilla extract make this lip scrub taste and smell delicious.

Oatmeal Lip Scrub With Cinnamon

  • 1 teaspoon oatmeal
  • 1 teaspoon virgin coconut oil
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon powder

Mix the oatmeal and the cinnamon together in a small bowl. Add the coconut and mix to make a stiff paste.

Apply to your lips in soft circular motions, then rinse off. Follow up with lip balm.

Oatmeal is a gentle exfoliator and also makes skin very soft.

Cinnamon increases circulation which makes lips plumper, and it soothes dry skin. Its antioxidants reduce inflammation which is helpful if your lips are very sore and red.

Cinamon will tingle on your skin. If you find it uncomfortable wash it off and use less cinnamon in the mix next time.

Honey Peppermint Lip Scrub

Mix the brown sugar and the sweet almond oil in a small bowl until fully combined.

Add the honey and stir to mix well.

Add peppermint oil and stir to distribute the peppermint throughout the scrub.

Use a spoon to transfer the scrub to a storage jar.

Use a soft bristle toothbrush or you finger to dip into the scrub and then apply the scrub to your lips using soft circular motions and let it sit for a minute or two. Rinse off then apply a moisturizing lip balm.

Sweet almond oil hydrates skin while the peppermint essential oil adds flavor and antibacterial properties to the scrub.

Ginger Spice Lip Scrub

  • 2 tablespoons virgin coconut oil (softened, but not melted)
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon molasses
  • 1 teaspoon ginger
  • ½  teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼  teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg

Combine the sugar and the coconut oil in a bowl then add the molasses and stir to mix.

Add the spices and mix together well.

Use a spoon to transfer the scrub to a storage jar.

Use a soft bristle toothbrush or you finger to dip into the scrub and then apply the scrub to your lips using soft circular motions and let it sit for a minute or two. Rinse off then apply a moisturizing lip balm.

This is a lovely festive lip scrub and makes a perfect little holiday gift.

The ginger, nutmeg and cinnamon all help to stimulate circulation, the coconut oil richly moisturizes, and the sugar exfoliates.

Pink Bubblegum Lip Scrub

  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • ½ teaspoon olive oil
  • 2 drops of bubblegum flavoring
  • 3 drops of pink food coloring

Add the sugar to a bowl, then mix in the bubblegum flavor and the food coloring.

Add the olive oil and mix well.

Transfer to a storage container.

Use a soft bristle toothbrush or you finger to dip into the scrub and then apply the scrub to your lips using soft circular motions and let it sit for a minute or two. Rinse off then apply a moisturizing lip balm.

This is a quick fun lip scrub that looks really pretty in the jar. The olive oil moisturizes while the sugar exfoliates.

Rich Red Lip Scrub

Rich Red Lip Scrub

  • 1 tablespoon jojoba oil
  • 1 tablespoon caster sugar
  • 2 drops of red food coloring

Add the food coloring to the sugar and stir to mix. Then add the jojoba oil and mix again. Transfer to your storage pot.

Jojoba oil has a composition that is very close to the natural moisturizing and protecting sebum that skin produces, which makes jojoba oil a very good choice for all types of skin care uses.

Jojoba oil and sugar are the main ingredients in Lush brand lip scrubs, but you don’t need to pay Lush prices if you make your own lip scrubs.

Use a soft bristle toothbrush or you finger to dip into the scrub and then apply the scrub to your lips using soft circular motions and let it sit for a minute or two. Rinse off then apply a moisturizing lip balm.

Fruity Kiwi Lip Scrub

  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon grapeseed oil (or other oil)
  • 1 tablespoon kiwi pulp

In a small bowl mix the sugar and oil together then stir in the kiwi pulp. Mix well and transfer to your storage jar.

This scrub looks a lovely summery pale yellow in the jar.

Grapeseed is a very light and well absorbed moisturizing oil and the kiwi pulp adds some natural enzymes to gently remove dry skin along with the sugar.

Use a soft bristle toothbrush or you finger to dip into the scrub and then apply the scrub to your lips using soft circular motions and let it sit for a minute or two. Rinse off then apply a moisturizing lip balm.

Chocolate Butter Lip Scrub

  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • ½  tablespoon shea butter
  • ½  tablespoon virgin coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon cocoa powder

Combine the brown sugar and the shea butter in a small bowl.

Add the oil and stir well to mix.

Finally mix in the cocoa powder and transfer to your storage jar.

Shea butter a touch of luxury moisturizing to this lip scrub and the cocoa makes it full of chocolatey yumminess.

Use a soft bristle toothbrush or you finger to dip into the scrub and then apply the scrub to your lips using soft circular motions and let it sit for a minute or two. Rinse off then apply a moisturizing lip balm.

Spicy Honey Almond Lip scrub

  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon almond oil
  • A dash of cinnamon or cayenne

In a small bowl combine the sugar and the honey.

Add the almond oil and mix well.

Mix in a pinch of cinnamon or cayenne, then transfer to your storage jar.

In this recipe the sugar exfoliates ,and the honey and the almond oil add hydration and softness. The added pinch of spice increases circulation and makes your lips appear fuller.

Use a soft bristle toothbrush or you finger to dip into the scrub and then apply the scrub to your lips using soft circular motions and let it sit for a minute or two. Rinse off then apply a moisturizing lip balm.

Pumpkin Spice Lip Scrub

  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

Mix the honey and the coconut oil together in a small bowl. Add the sugar and mix again, then stir in the pumpkin pie spice. Transfer to your storage jar.

Honey and coconut oil add lots of rich moisture to your lips while the sugar removes dry rough skin. Pumpkin pie spice gives this lip scrub a delicious flavor and aroma!

Use a soft bristle toothbrush or you finger to dip into the scrub and then apply the scrub to your lips using soft circular motions and let it sit for a minute or two. Rinse off then apply a moisturizing lip balm.

Orange Vanilla Lip Scrub

  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • A few drops of orange essence and vanilla essence

Mix the honey and the coconut oil together in a small bowl. Add the sugar and mix well. Stir in the orange and vanilla flavoring essences and combine well. Transfer to a small pot to store.

This lip scrub tastes scrumptious. The honey and coconut add moisture to your lips. And the sugar gently slough off dead skin.

Use a soft bristle toothbrush or you finger to dip into the scrub and then apply the scrub to your lips using soft circular motions and let it sit for a minute or two. Rinse off then apply a moisturizing lip balm.

I hope that these recipes have given you some ideas for even more delicious lip scrubs that you could make. You can really make any combination that takes your fancy!

Written by Irina Radosevic MD
Irina graduated from the University of Belgrade, School of Medicine as a Doctor of Medicine (MD) and spent over 3 years working in the Clinical Hospital Center Zvezdara, in the Department of Emergency Medicine. She also undertook a postgraduate in Cardiology from the same University and had previously worked for over a year as a Physician and Nutritionist Dietitian for the Fitness club Green Zone. She eventually left her chaotic but fulfilling job in the ER to pursue her passion of writing, travelling and mountain climbing which has included writing a first aid course for the alpine club of Belgrade. Irina currently works as a VA for PintMedia focusing on medical and travel writing. Feel free to connect with Irina on LinkedIn and FaceBook. Her CV can be seen here.