How to Get Rid of Pimples on the Lips

Dealing with a pimple on your lip can be frustrating and uncomfortable. Fortunately, there are several ways to treat and prevent this common issue effectively.

In this article, we’ll explore some of the most effective home remedies and treatments that can help you get rid of a pimple on your lip quickly and safely.

Some remedies include materials that you can easily find at home, as well as treatments that can be conducted by a medical professional. Keep in mind that it’s essential to choose the most suitable treatment for your skin type and the specific pimple to get the best results.

Why Do Pimples Appear

Understanding the causes behind pesky blemishes is crucial for effective prevention and treatment. Here are the various factors that contribute to the development of pimples on the lips:

Stress and Hormones

Pimples on the lips can often be triggered by fluctuations in hormones and heightened stress levels. Hormonal changes, like those occurring during menstruation or pregnancy, can stimulate excess oil production, potentially leading to clogged pores on the lip line.

Furthermore, stress can indirectly exacerbate the issue by prompting behaviors such as lip biting or picking, which introduce bacteria and irritate the skin.

Bacterial Infection

Harmful bacteria often contribute to lip pimples. These pathogens, such as staphylococcus, can enter small cuts or pores on your lips, causing infection and inflammation.

Poor hygiene practices, sharing lip products, or even kissing someone with a cold sore can introduce or spread these bacteria, heightening the risk of lip acne.

Blocked Pores

When excess sebum, dead skin cells, and bacteria accumulate in the hair follicles along your lip line, it can lead to the formation of whiteheads or blackheads.

These blockages can be irritating and uncomfortable, providing an environment conducive to infection and eventually resulting in painful lip pimples.

Lip Balm and Makeup

Surprisingly, products designed to enhance your lip beauty can sometimes cause lip pimples. Thick lip balms and certain lipsticks may contain ingredients that clog your pores or trigger allergic reactions.

Sharing contaminated lip products can introduce bacteria, exacerbating the problem. Be discerning with your lip cosmetics and maintain proper hygiene to prevent these breakouts.

Food Choices

Your diet can influence lip acne, especially if you consume high-glycemic foods and dairy products. These foods can raise your blood sugar levels and trigger inflammation in your body, potentially increasing oil production and leading to the development of lip pimples.

Home Remedies for Lip Pimples

When lip pimples make an unwelcome appearance, it’s reassuring to know that effective home treatments are readily available to help alleviate discomfort and accelerate healing. Here are some examples:

Soaps and Creams

When dealing with lip pimples, you can turn to over-the-counter soaps and creams containing acne-fighting ingredients like salicylic acid.

These products are designed to unclog pores and reduce inflammation, helping you effectively manage and treat your lip pimples without a prescription.

Use a mild, fragrance-free facial cleanser or soap that’s suitable for sensitive skin. Be extra careful not to scrub or rub vigorously, as this can worsen the condition. 

Rinse off the cleanser with lukewarm water. Make sure there is no residue left on your lips, as it can also cause irritation.

If you need to apply the cream, use a clean cotton swab or your fingertip.

Hot or Cold Compress

A warm compress can help open up the pores, allowing trapped oil and debris to escape, while a cold compress can reduce swelling and soothe inflammation. Alternating between the two can bring quick relief to your lip pimples.

To apply, use a clean, soft cloth soaked in comfortably warm or cold water and hold it on the affected area for 10-15 minutes. Prolonged warm or cold compress can result in a rebound, negating the benefits of a compress. 

Avoid pressing or rubbing to prevent further irritation. After using the cloth for the affected pimple area, avoid wiping or using it on other areas of the face to prevent cross-contamination.

Castor Oil

Castor oil is a natural remedy that can aid in reducing lip pimples. It possesses antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, which can help eliminate bacteria and calm irritation around your lips.

Applying a small amount of castor oil can accelerate the healing process.

Lemon Juice

Lemon juice’s natural acidity can be beneficial for lip pimples. It acts as an astringent and can help dry out the pimple. However, be cautious, as it can be drying and may cause some stinging.

Apply it sparingly and avoid exposure to sunlight, as lemon juice can make your skin more sensitive to UV rays.

Turmeric Paste

Turmeric is a powerful anti-inflammatory and antibacterial spice that can be turned into a paste for your lip pimples. The paste can help reduce swelling and redness while inhibiting bacterial growth.

Gently apply the turmeric paste to your lip pimples for potential relief.


Honey’s natural antimicrobial properties make it an excellent home treatment for lip pimples.

Applying a small amount of raw, unprocessed honey to the affected area can help fight bacteria and soothe inflammation, promoting faster healing and relief from discomfort.


The natural acidity in tomatoes can assist in drying out lip pimples. Apply a small piece of tomato to the pimple and leave it for a few minutes.

The acidic properties can help reduce inflammation and potentially hasten the healing process.

Tea Tree Oil

Tea tree oil is known for its potent antimicrobial properties. Diluted tea tree oil can be applied to lip pimples to help combat bacteria and reduce inflammation.

It’s essential to dilute it to avoid skin irritation, but it can be an effective remedy for managing lip acne.


Toothpaste is a popular home treatment for lip pimples due to its drying properties. However, it should be used with caution, as some toothpaste contains ingredients that may irritate the skin.

Apply a small amount and leave it on overnight, then rinse it off in the morning to potentially reduce the pimple’s size and redness.

Medical Treatments for Pimples

Use a Pimple Patch

Incorporate a pimple patch into your skincare routine when you discover a pimple developing. These adhesive patches help reduce inflammation and absorb oil, dirt, and other impurities from the infected area. 

Using a patch will ensure that the area is protected, maintaining humidity to prevent further breakouts, improve appearance, and encourage healing. Ensure to clean your face prior to application and read the usage instructions.

Benzoyl Peroxide

Benzoyl peroxide is a trusted acne-fighting ingredient that can effectively treat lip pimples. It works by killing acne-causing bacteria and unclogging pores.

Carefully apply a thin layer to the affected area to diminish your pimples and prevent further breakouts.

Antibiotics Applied Locally

Topical antibiotics, like antibiotic creams or ointments, are prescribed for treating lip pimples caused by localized bacterial infections. These products are applied directly to the affected area and help eliminate the bacteria responsible for the pimple. 

Ensure you follow your healthcare provider’s instructions regarding the application frequency and duration of treatment to combat the infection effectively.

Antibiotic Medication

Oral antibiotics are prescribed by healthcare professionals to treat lip pimples in cases where the condition is associated with a bacterial infection, such as a staph infection or folliculitis. 

These antibiotics work systemically, targeting and killing the bacteria responsible for the pimple.

It’s important to complete the entire course of antibiotics as prescribed, both in dosage and length, to ensure the infection is completely eradicated.

Oral Retinoids

In some cases, lip pimples may be associated with conditions like perioral dermatitis. Oral retinoids may be prescribed by a dermatologist to treat such conditions.

These medications can help control inflammation and prevent future flare-ups.

Acne Injections

Cortisone injections are a medical intervention reserved for particularly stubborn or inflamed lip pimples. A healthcare professional can administer a small dose of corticosteroids directly into the pimple.

This potent anti-inflammatory treatment swiftly reduces swelling and redness, offering rapid relief and promoting the pimple’s resolution. It’s a quick and targeted solution for persistent lip acne.

Laser Therapy

Laser treatment, such as pulsed-dye laser or CO2 laser, can be used to address certain skin conditions that may cause lip pimples.

This therapy can target blood vessels or overactive sebaceous glands.

Chemical Peels

Dermatologists may recommend chemical peels to treat perioral dermatitis or other skin conditions on the lips or face.

Chemical peels can exfoliate the skin and improve its texture.

Avoiding Future Lip Pimples

Here are practical and easy-to-follow tips that can help prevent those bothersome lip blemishes, ensuring your lips remain pimple-free and comfortable in the future.

Wash Your Face

Maintaining proper hygiene plays a crucial role. Wash your face twice a day with a gentle cleanser to remove dirt and impurities.

Avoid using harsh or abrasive scrubs, as they can irritate the skin around your lips.

Choose Skin Products Wisely

Choose non-comedogenic makeup and skincare products. These are formulated to avoid clogging your pores, reducing the likelihood of developing pimples.

Remember to remove your makeup before going to bed.

Avoid Touching Your Lips

It’s essential to avoid touching your lips frequently, as this can transfer bacteria from your hands to your lip area, increasing the chances of pimples.

Habits such as lip biting, biting or resting a pen on the lips, or touching lips during the use of a microphone can also introduce pathogens into your skin.

Be Careful with Hair Removal Methods

When it comes to removing facial hair, be cautious around the mouth. Waxing or hair removal creams can cause tiny wounds and irritation, leading to pimples.

If you experience frequent breakouts, consult a dermatologist for alternative hair removal methods.

Follow a Healthy Lifestyle

A healthy diet and lifestyle contribute to overall skin health. Eating a balanced diet rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants can help reduce the chances of developing lip pimples.

Stay hydrated, get enough sleep, and manage stress to maintain healthy skin.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best way to treat a lip pimple?

To treat a lip pimple effectively, you can try over-the-counter treatments containing salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide.

If the pimple is persistent, consult a dermatologist for prescription medications or procedures.

How can I prevent pimples on my lipline?

Prevent pimples on your lipline by maintaining a proper skincare routine, including cleansing and moisturizing.

Avoid touching your face, especially around your lips, and regularly clean items that come into contact with your mouth, such as lip balm and makeup brushes and applicators.

What are the causes of pimples around the mouth?

Pimples around the mouth can be caused by various factors, including hormonal imbalance,  bacterial infections, or an underlying condition like rosacea.

Irritation from lip products, stress, and clogged pores also contribute to having a pimple in the lip area.

How do you distinguish between a lip pimple and a cold sore?

Lip pimples are generally smaller, red bumps, while cold sores appear as fluid-filled blisters.

Pimples can be painful, but cold sores often cause a tingling or burning sensation before they emerge. Cold sores are caused by the herpes simplex virus.

What are some effective home remedies for lip pimples?

Effective remedies for lip pimples include turmeric paste, honey, tomato, and tea tree oil.

However, it’s important to test for potential allergies or skin reactions before applying these treatments.