The skin on your lips is unique from other parts of your body because it is thinner, lacks a top layer, and doesn’t have sebaceous glands that excrete oil. These characteristics make your lips more delicate than other areas, so their care needs to be slightly different, too.

Luckily, there are lots of easy ways to swap out dry, chapped lips for a smooth, kissable pout.

1. Exfoliate

Dry, flaky lips are a common problem in the cooler winter months, as the air tends to be drier. To remedy this, you can mix up a DIY lip scrub using honey and sugar that’s gentle enough on the delicate skin on your lips, yet effective at removing the flakes of dead skin cells from the surface, revealing smoother, more comfortable lips.

2. Use a SPF Lip Balm

Sun protection is oh-so important, especially on the thin skin on your lips. A balm with SPF also offers much-needed moisture and extra barrier protection in cooler, drier winter air.

Additionally, avoid the urge to lick or bite your lips. If they start to feel dry or chapped, reach for your trusty balm instead. It helps to have one on hand in your car, office, and on your nightstand so you never have to go without.

3. Go for a Matte vs. Glossy Look

Shiny lip gloss can attract UV rays, heightening their negative effects on your lips, including dryness and irritation. Instead, turn down the shine with a matte look. It’s even better if your lip color contains moisturizing or protective ingredients like beeswax to seal in moisture while adding a pop of color.

4. Skip Flavors or Fragrances

So many lip products contain added flavors or scents (sorry, cherry Chapstick!) But these ingredients can worsen dryness and may irritate your lips, especially if they are cracked or chapped. If you can’t seem to get lip dryness and chapping under control, check the ingredients in your lip products. Fragrances or flavors could be to blame.

5. Drink Plenty of Water

People are often surprised at just how much of a difference water consumption has on the health and appearance of their skin — including their lips. Staying hydrated is essential to maintaining smooth, healthy skin and lips, so be sure to drink enough water throughout the day. On colder days or nights, a warm cup of tea is the perfect stand-in for the ice-cold water you might reach for in the height of the summer.