When buying chapstick, check to make sure it doesn't contain salicylic acid, like Carmex does. This ingredient actually eats through skin layers. The result can be a vicious spiral of lip destruction and product reapplication.
Other common lip balm ingredients to avoid are irritants like sopropyl myristate, eugenol, and phenol.
Instead, seek lip balms with FDA-approved protectants and/or a hydrocortisone base.
If you're suffering from chapped lips, you can also try this cheap solution: keep your tongue inside your mouth and stop licking your lips. — BEN POPKEN
For years, my mother (a nurse for an ophthalmologist) has warned me away from stuff like Visine*, cautioning that the chemicals used to "Get The Red Out" actually disrupt the capillary walls and make your eyes more prone to getting red. The revelation that most lip balms have analogous effects doesn't surprise me at all.
"Artificial Tears" are another matter entirely, and are actually what my ophthalmologist recommends.