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How Do I Choose the Best Body Balm?

Kelly Ferguson
Kelly Ferguson

There is a huge variety of different body balms available, meant for anything from light moisturization to repairing severely dry, cracked skin or even helping wounds heal. The best way to choose a good moisturizing body balm is to narrow your search to balms that address the amount of moisture you need without being too heavy or too light. From there, choose a balm in your price range that appeals to you based on its fragrance, texture, sun protection, or any other properties you would like to have. If you have other needs for a healing balm, such as disinfecting properties or burn and wound soothing, you can consult the ingredients list to ensure that the balm contains the ingredients you need.

For moisturizing balms, try to match your body balm purchase to your skin type to get the best benefits. Heavy, greasy balms may feel too thick and may clog pores on skin that is not naturally very dry, but might be perfect for someone who has chronically dry, cracked skin. Likewise, light balms will probably not be sufficient for very dry, damaged skin.

Woman with hand on her hip
Woman with hand on her hip

Some products use all natural ingredients, while others add chemicals or other synthetic ingredients, either as preservatives or as an attempt to make the balm have a more pleasing texture, consistency, or scent. When looking for a body balm, consult the list of ingredients to make sure you are not allergic to any of them, regardless of whether a product claims to be "all natural." This is important because body balm, which often contains a variety of plant-based butters and oils, is intended to be applied over the entire body and may therefore trigger an allergic reaction over a much larger area than most products. Individuals who tend to have allergies should test the body balm over a small portion of skin and let it sit for several hours before applying the balm to the rest of the body.

If possible, choose a moisturizing body balm that contains SPF. The added sun protection can help protect your skin from becoming burned and chapped, and therefore even more dry and uncomfortable. Additionally, using daily sun protection can help you ward off skin cancer and premature wrinkling of your skin. Most balms meant for soothing and disinfecting burns or wounds will not contain SPF, so you should make sure to take the proper precautions to protect yourself.

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