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January 27, 2013

Help for Chronic Peeling Lips and Exfoliative Chelitis

With my lupus, I have developed Exfoliative Chelitis on my bottom lip. My lip is constantly peeling, despite obsessive use of lip balm. I read that chapstick type products have something in them that dries your lips further (to keep you coming back, I guess), so I don't use them anymore. I don't like using petroleum products on my body, even if they do work.

Have been trying so many different things. Something worked not long ago, and I thought it was cured, but it came back. I racked my brain trying to remember what I had done, and then I recalled...PAPAYA.

I knew papaya was a strong exfoliant, so I took some papaya peel that I had from one that I had eaten and rubbed the flesh part on my lips every day, several times a day. I let the juice dry and then patted on cocoa butter pretty thickly. Followed that up with a coat of Burt's Bees lip balm with pomegranate oil (the regular may work as well, I just have this one). Make sure to do it right before you go to bed also.

My lips were in terrible shape when I started this a few days ago. I was waking up with them dry, cracked and bleeding, no matter how much lip balm I used at night. This time, I juiced the papaya -- just a tiny bit because it doesn't last long in the fridge -- and used just the juice on my lips. After 5 days, they are not peeling anymore and the cold sore I had has healed completely. They are still dry, so I'm still doing the treatment, but this is the first thing that has actually worked in a long time, and MUCH BETTER than manual peeling.

I'm going to try freezing some juice in tiny little ice cube trays and just melting one every day for daily use and see what happens. I guess if you don't mind putting petroleum products on your body, you could use Vaseline instead of the beeswax. I found the Burt's Bees pretty cheap on Amazon. The price has gone up since I bought it, but it's still cheaper than a single tube at Wal-Mart.

This is the cheapest seller I found:

Burt's Bees Pomegranate Lip Balm Tube, .15-Ounce Tubes (Pack of 4)


I soon gave up on the papaya. I have found the only thing that works for me is triple antibiotic ointment, applied several times a day. It heals my bottmo lip very quickly, but the cycles runs about every 5 days now. My lip will heal completely for about 4 days, then it will start chapping and peeling again, then they will heal for about 3-4 days, during which time I don't have to put anything on it.  Aquaphor works well too, but doesn't heal it once it starts peeling. Still, it is MUCH better than it was before I started using the antibiotic ointment. I still think it is the parasites, because there is still the strange stringy peeling with the strings embedded at the bottom and the round balls rolling out of the lip once they are clipped off.


  1. I have very dry skin, which the steroids I'm still taking for my ITP has made considerably worse. My lips are always dry & often peeling. I gave up on chapstick products years ago, & all the ones with sun protection factors, as they didn't help & felt strange.
    What works for me are the Burt's Bee's lip balm range. I use the plain honey one several times a day, after I've slathered my face with cocoa butter moisturiser. The pomegranite oil one, with a bit of red colour, does as lipstick. I have them in all my bags so I'm never without lip balm.

    I shall follow your link & get some cheap ones online. Thanks for that. Good luck with making your own with the papaya. Sounds like a great idea.

    1. I like the Burts bees lip blam, it helps my lips.


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