One of my favorite things about the internet is the endless list of life hacks that surfaced around the early 2010s (I’m pretty sure that’s when the trend started 😂).
There are SO many uses for so many things that I would never have thought about.
One of them being Vicks Vaporub. And I’m going to be honest, I’ve only ever used it for congestion, but seeing as how there are more uses for it than that, I thought I’d share some. 🙂
So what is Vicks Vaporub?
After being around for more than 125 years, this topical ointment consists mainly of camphor, menthol, and eucalyptus.
It’s a salve with a jell-like texture and a very strong smell of menthol.
Uses for the Ointment
There are plenty of ways people use Vicks Vaporub, some of them with studies and some not scientifically backed.
So honestly, it’s going to be up to you to try out some of these methods to see if they personally work for you.
And down below are some ways people are using Vicks.
1. Eases Coughing
All three of the ingredients listed above have been shown to help with coughing (source).
Just make sure to use it on your neck and chest only, not on your face. Also, it’s not recommended for people who are coughing up a lot of phlegm or with asthma or emphysema.
2. Helps with Soothing Blemishes
The cedar oil in Vicks Vaoporub has been shown to help with blemishes (source) while the eucalyptus can be antimicrobial (source). So with ingredients like these, I think it makes a good experiment when it comes to getting rid of pimples and soothing your skin.
3. Relieves Congestion
In a 2017 study, Vicks Vaporub was shown to have helped adults dealing with a cold. They reported to having a higher sleep quality since it helped to relieve their congestion.
However, note that it’s not a decongestant, but creates a cooling sensation in your nose that helps your brain to think that you’re breathing more easily.
4. Soothes Sore Muscles
Camphor and menthol have both been shown to help with relieving muscle pain (source). So if you’ve just come back from a workout, then this might be a good method!
5. Repels Mosquitoes
Camphor oil has also been shown to help repel insects such as mosquitoes (source). And since Vicks Vaporub has this as one of its main ingredients, then it might be good to place it in a few areas before you take a night walk.
6. May Relieve Headaches
Small studies have helped to show that menthol may have headache-relieving properties when applied to the base of the skull (source). However, these studies were done with products that contained more menthol than Vicks.
This isn’t to say that it would prove ineffective for headaches, but there just haven’t been any studies done on it yet. So it’ll be up to you to test this out for yourself.
7. May Help With Stretch Marks
If you have stretch marks (like me), then this might be worth testing out. Just know that there hasn’t been any evidence found from researchers that topical creams or lotions help with reducing the appearance of stretch marks.
But, some people have said that they’ve seen improvement in their stretch marks when using Vicks, so I think it’s worth testing out. Just make sure to do it for longer than a month as many topical treatments take a lot longer to show up.