What To Know Before Trying This Wasabi Lip-Plumping Hack

We've heard about our fair share of out-there beauty hacks. Vlogger Jordan Liberty suggested we blot away facial shine with toilet-seat covers. We've been told to use mouthwash as a dandruff treatment (nope). So we're open to doing some pretty weird stuff in the name of good hair and skin — but we never thought wasabi would be involved (unless it's used as a fragrance note).

But that's the ingredient social media star Farah Dhukai uses to plump up her lips, according to Huffington Post U.K. She posted the tutorial to her Instagram account a few days ago, and has garnered an impressive 4.4 million views since.
Instagram via @farahdhukai.
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Dhukai says wasabi paste is her favorite remedy for lip wrinkles and dryness, and claims that it acts as a natural enhancer. "They'll be so plump people will think you've had them done," she wrote.

While it sounds safer than sucking on a cup à la the Kylie Jenner challenge, we weren't convinced, so we reached out to dermatologist Joshua Zeichner, MD, to get his take. His conclusion: The paste is safe to use — so trying it won't hurt — but only in moderation.

"Lip plumpers work by creating irritation in the lips, which results in swelling, making the lips look fuller," he says. "Wasabi, by its very nature, is an irritant to the skin. Using a little on the lip will definitely result in temporary swelling and plumping. Just be careful not to overdo it. Irritants aren't always well-tolerated."

Think of it this way: If the piece of wasabi atop your sushi grazes your lips on the way into your mouth, it won't do anything dramatic. Neither will a little carefully applied paste. But if you apply too much of it — or too often — or, if you simply have sensitive skin, Dr. Zeichner says you're likely asking for a skin reaction.

In the end, yes, wasabi will temporarily plump your lips — and probably give you a tingling sensation that's stronger than that of any gloss. Me, personally? I'm limiting it to my spicy tuna roll.
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