08/02/2012 08:26 am ET Updated Oct 11, 2012

I'm Addicted To Lip Balm

Addictions are dangerous. They can change your life, and sometimes they can even kill you. Yet, I have to admit that I am addicted to lip balm.

Just the thought of going an entire day without applying lip balm makes me shudder. I'll rub my lips together to test the moisture level, run to grab a tube and apply it again and again. It's a common habit for a lot of people to always carry lip balm. But I can't leave a room without it. At all times, there's a tube in my desk drawer, nightstand, on top of my vanity, inside my purse and car. If I'm leaving my handbag at home, I stick a tube in my pocket. The rare occasion where I find myself stranded without access to lip balm, I'm annoyed and disappointed in myself for forgetting my faithful friend.

I apply lip balm before lipstick or lip gloss, and if I had to choose one of the three, a basic tube of cherry Chapstick would win every time. I used to buy Chapstick in bulk at BJ's (yes, I actually went through 10-packs), but recently I have been branching out and trying Nivea, Blistex, and any other brand that catches my eye at the drugstore.

It all started when I was in high school. I had an unfortunate splattering of acne across my face. Hard as I tried, the breakouts wouldn't go away. After everything else failed, my dermatologist put me on Accutane. Among the more drastic side effects of the medicine, were potential dry skin and lips. After a few weeks, I noticed my lips were drier than usual, so I started carrying Chapstick around and using it every now and then. At some point, my healthy effort to combat dryness turned into an obsession. And it might just be my imagination, but I'm convinced that my lips are now so used to lip balm that they forget how to stay moisturized without it.

Now, I have trouble falling asleep if I don't apply lip balm before bed. After every drink or meal, I reapply. Long make out session? Reapply. Halfway through writing this, I reapplied. I've tried to kick my habit, but I eventually lose all willpower and slather some more on my lips.

I'm sure if I really made the effort to stop using lip balm, I could do it. But using too much Chapstick never killed anyone, so I don't see much of a reason to force myself to stop. But if I were stranded on a desert island and had to choose three things I could have with me, one would be a tube of lip balm, for sure.