Lip plumping cosmetics give the lips a fuller appearance without the need for surgery, and without permanent effects. They are safe to use unless one has an allergy to one of the ingredients, as with most cosmetic products. Lip plumping can make use of a variety of ingredients to give the lips a round, luscious appearance.
Like other cosmetic products for the lips, lip plumping products may come in lipsticks, cremes, or glosses. Some lip plumping cosmetics include color or shine, and others do not. Most work by slightly inflaming the mucosa, or mucous membrane, of the lips, causing them to become swollen. Because of this, lip plumpers often cause a tingling, or mild burning sensation.
The most popular effective ingredient in lip plumping products is some form of Capsicum, the fruit of the red pepper plant. Capsicum contains the chemical capsaicin, which causes a burning sensation. Capsaicin is an irritant to mammals, and is responsible for the spiciness of hot peppers, and is also the active component in pepper spray. Other lip plumping products use cinnamon, menthol, or caffeine to stimulate the lip mucosa, or increase blood flow to the area.
Lip plumpers are very popular and can be found virtually any place cosmetics are sold, in a wide variety of styles and price ranges. In addition to the lip plumping ingredient, many products contain moisturizers to keep lips soft or ingredients that claim to increase collagen or fat production in the lips.
An alternative to buying lip plumping cosmetics is to use cinnamon leaf essential oil. Be very careful when using cinnamon leaf oil the first few times, as essential oil is very concentrated, and it can cause drying and burning beyond the desired amount. Never use undiluted essential oil on the skin, but mix a few drops into lip gloss, an almond oil base, petroleum jelly, or any cosmetic product of your choice to cause plumping. Spot test a small amount on an area less sensitive than the lips, such as the forearm or behind the ear. If you have no adverse affect overnight, you can try using it on your lips.
Another method of plumping the lips is to mix a bit of niacin powder, or liquid from dietary supplements, into cosmetics for the lips. In fact, niacin is an ingredient in many commercial lip plumpers. It dilates the blood vessels, causing the lips to look plumper and rosier.