I have this one sort of disgusting habit which has in some way persisted with me all throughout my life. I am aware that this impulse is largely rooted in anxiety, although it still often remains out of my conscious control. Discovering that what I have is a relatively common tic makes me feel less self-judgmental about my habits, therefore I have chosen to write a little bit about my personal experiences, before going into this review.

For as long as I can recall, I have had this incredibly strong skin-picking obsession. As a child: my scabs never stood a chance, mosquito bites were scratched at so that I could pick at the dried puss, and I suffered harder than anyone I knew through the chicken pox because I had to pick at each and every single bump. As an adolescent, I bit any loose skin on my fingers, and then, after puberty, I had an endless bout of pimples to perpetually pester. I’ve become a lot more controlled in all of those gross little habits, although there is still one little tic that makes me instantly hate myself anytime catch myself doing it. My persisting bad habit is that, anytime the winter air gets dry and I feel the skin on my lips start to flake, I pull relentlessly at that loose skin, until I end up with bleeding and peeling lips. … Anyone else?

If this does sound like you, you would probably know that the next step after a ravenous picking session, is to try and heal the skin you damaged, while you curse yourself for picking at it in the first-place. I am aware that intense pickers cannot stop their habit long enough to heal, although, thankfully, I am not classified as a severe skin picker by any means, and so, I have picked (pun intended) up some good handy tips that help me to disguise and mitigate the habit.

The first thing I have to do after I’ve started peeling at superficial layers of my lips, is to give the delicate skin a proper scrub. Scrubbing with a sugar scrub, or even an old toothbrush, allows me to gently exfoliate away the rest of the dead skin, rather than viciously peeling at it with teeth and nails. Exfoliated skin also gives you a nice soft canvas for the next crucial step, which is, applying a barrier of moisture so that the skin can repair itself.

Now, most women I know seem to have this infinite supply of random lip balms, often casually strewn about their most frequented environments. There is usually a tube in her nightstand, her car, her desk at work, her purse, her makeup bag, because let’s face it, lip balms are sort of a fun obsession. When I was a young girl, having a certain flavour of Lip Smackers was like a status symbol; if you only had smoothie flavours, when all your other friends showed up at school with their glitters, you could basically declare your life to be over. And dramatics aside, I don’t see that much has changed over time, at least in this realm of cosmetics. A lot of times we keep buying products, not because they work well, but because they are packaged well. What really comes to mind for me, with respect to this phenomenon, is the trend of the pretty egg-shaped lip balms, which were toted by so many, despite the product having a published history of inflicting skin reactions in some users. I still have one of these eggs rolling around in my purse to be perfectly honest, because hey, branding works.

I consider myself to be subject to trends, but also to be a pretty conscious consumer. My usual go-to brand for lip balms, for most of my life, was Burt’s Bees, because they advertise having natural and organic ingredients, but still carry a diverse and commercial product line. Although, my brand loyalty has completely changed, upon discovery of an organically made balm, that is also infused with the healing powers of cannabis.

This lip balm comes from a Vancouver Island company called Earth Dragon Organics. Upon first glance, I was a touch disappointed that my $8 balm had such cheap looking packaging, although, this was the only disappointment that I faced with this product.

The first flavour I have is Pink Raspberry, and it features a reddish shade that delivers a very slight tint when applied, due to the natural ingredients of beet root powder and iron oxide. Though, the other flavour, peppermint, is by far my favourite to use, because of the refreshing flavour from the minty essential oil. Both balms are entirely organic, and made up of all the best hydrating ingredients: coconut oil, shea butter, beeswax, and vitamin E. What makes these balms extra special, and actually worth some extra bucks, is that they are also infused with a small amount of cannabis oil.

There are some lip balms out there, more so in California and Colorado, that contain enough cannabis in them to discreetly get you buzzed, however, Earth Dragon’s balm is not one of those. The cannabis included in their lip balms has the sole purpose of medicating the skin and speeding up healing. I don’t exactly know yet how the cannabis oil aids in repairing the peeled skin, but I can say that it really does work. The Earth Dragon cannabis lip balm has consistently been able to heal my lips at double the speed of any other lip product I’ve ever found on the traditional market. Lastly, the icing on the cake, is that this super little balm comes from a local Canadian business, and all of the products are made with love.

I truly did not plan for a review of some cannabis lip balms to turn into a candid confession about an anxiety-related quirk, but this is usually what happens when I let myself get honest in front of a blank page. Finding these balms has been kind of a life saver, because they allow for some quick healing from a skin-picking habit that can sometimes be out of my conscious control. *If dermatillomania or trichotillomania is something that severely influences your life, I am absolutely empathetic to the fact that you need a little more than just a lip balm, and I encourage you to seek out local resources and helplines, because relief is possible.*

In conclusion, these lip balms, despite not being packaged to be pretty, are the best I’ve ever used. Infused with 10 milligrams of concentrated cannabis oil, these balms cannot get you intoxicated, however you will definitely be tripping over how well they can heal your chapped and cracked smackers.

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