These Strangely Effective VapoRub Hacks Prove Why Everyone Should Keep A Jar Of Vicks At Home - stories hollywood tale

These Strangely Effective VapoRub Hacks Prove Why Everyone Should Keep A Jar Of Vicks At Home


Vicks VapoRub is a common cold and flu remedy, but could it be more than just that? Created by Lunsford Richardson as a remedy for his sick son who suffered from a terrible case of croup, Vicks VapoRub has several beneficial ingredients including eucalyptus, camphor, and menthol. When applied to the body, the topical product is heated and releases its soothing vapors. Under the Vicks Family Remedies Company, now known as Vicks, the ointment became commercially available in 1894.  The company promoted its range of products as items for caring for loved ones. Vicks soon expanded to offer other products including cough drops and syrups, a vapor inhaler, LiquiCaps, and nasal sprays. And 125 years later, Vicks VapoRub still remains a popular product made by the company. But the number of unconventional uses for this ointment is unbelievable. Get ready, because VapoRub is about to become a new favorite household item.

Stimulates Hair Growth

For the century-plus that it’s been in existence, Vicks VapoRub is mostly known as a product used to offer relief from coughs and flu. It turns out that the balm has quite a number of unexplored uses when it comes to hair and beauty. VapoRub might just offer the solution for growth.

Applying a small amount of the salve on the scalp can help promote growth. The way it works is by stimulating blood flow around the scalp and killing any bacteria present on the scalp that might be inhibiting growth in the first place.

Keeps Shoes Looking Shiny

We all love the look of a new pair of leather shoes because they are typically shiny and spotless. Once we’ve worn them a couple of times they start losing their luster and they may even look worn out because of the dirt accumulating on them.

All it takes is some proper care to keep footwear looking as good as new. Once again, VapoRub can come to the rescue and help keep kicks looking shiny. Apply some of the ointment on a spare toothbrush and scrub away. That should remove the grime and restore shine.

Moisturizes Dry Patches On The Face

Harsh soaps or beauty products, changes in the weather, and hot water may cause the skin on the face to develop dry patches. Vicks VapoRub can work as an effective facial moisturizer to help solve the issue of dry skin.

Just apply the product to the dry patches to moisturize and restore its smooth appearance. It’s best to apply the ointment consistently to see noticeable results. Vicks VapoRub also helps keep moisture locked in longer and can work as a great substitute for a regular face cream.

Heals Chapped Lips

We all experience dry lips every now and then, and it’s usually a sign that they need some hydration. The winter months are by far the worst and one can develop chapped lips marked by dryness, peeling irritation, and even inflammation.

Rub a small amount of VapoRub on the lips if they are chapped or dry. The menthol in the salve acts as a natural lip plumper. If inflammation or a fever blister is an issue, applying VapoRub on it might relieve the pain and also hasten the healing process.

Fights Headaches

Besides its use in relieving the symptoms of coughs and flu, VapoRub has long been used to treat headaches. Got one of those throbbing headaches? Rubbing some VapoRub on the temples and forehead can help. The cooling sensation of menthol can relieve pain in a matter of minutes and eases the tension.

Rubbing a small amount of the balm under the nose can also deliver much-needed relief from a throbbing headache. The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center also notes that menthol has anti-inflammatory properties that can help with relieving congestion and pain.

Emergency Makeup Remover

When the regular makeup remover has run out, VapoRub can work like a charm in its place. Naturally, please exercise caution when rubbing the product around the eyelids or under the eyes but otherwise, it works and is great and inexpensive too.

It also works as an effective lipstick remover; apply a thin layer of VapoRub on stained lips and give it five minutes to work its magic. Use a cotton pad to wipe off the remaining product after that and there won’t be any residue or stain left. Not to forget that the balm moisturizes the lips during the process.

Turns A Bathroom Into A Spa

We could all use some self-care every now and then, which is why a spa day never sounds like a terrible idea. But one doesn’t have to step outside the comfort of one’s home to enjoy the experience, because, with some VapoRub, simply transform the bathroom into a soothing haven.

Just place a VapoShower tablet on the floor, directly under the shower to benefit from the soothing vapors. The tablet releases essential oils while spreading a refreshing scent around the bathroom. Taking a shower with one of these vapor bombs is also a good solution to get some much-needed relief when suffering from a headache or a cold.

Repels Insects

Bugs and insects can drive one up the walls especially when traveling or camping in the forest. As long as there’s some VapoRub at hand, one can keep the bugs at bay. Apply a thin layer to clothing and skin and it works as an insect repellent.

Best yet, it keeps the mosquitoes away because most insects don’t like the scent of the balm. Keep an open jar in the bathroom or any other room around the house where there might be an insect problem. The same VapoRub comes in handy when relieving the pain and discomfort caused by insect bites.

Reduces The Appearance Of Stretch Marks

Stretch marks form on the skin after it’s stretched too quickly, usually after a rapid weight gain or weight loss, and affect more women in comparison to men. They can appear anywhere on the body but they are prominent around the thighs, hips, stomach, and upper arms. Currently, there’s still little medical evidence that supports the effectiveness of the creams, lotions, and gels touted as stretch mark cures.

In the same breath, many women have been turning to Vicks to combat stretch marks but it cannot get rid of them entirely. The balm’s moisturizing properties reduce the dry patches of skin around the area with stretch marks which can make them less prominent.

Solution For Squeaky Doors & Cabinets

A squeaky door or cabinet can quickly become annoying. Thankfully, a little VapoRub can help fix the issue. Rub a small amount of the balm on the hinges of the squeaky cabinet or door. It’s a quick solution to oiling the hinges when there isn’t any grease at home.

The oils in the VapoRub, including petroleum jelly, help keep the hinges of doors or cabinets greased. VapoRub is non-toxic and therefore, it also offers the peace of mind that potentially harmful substances are not being introduced in the home.

Reduce The Appearance Of Acne Scars

Acne is triggered by several factors including the over-production of oil, excessive inflammation, or clogged pores. While the condition is prominent in adolescents, adults can still develop blemishes, especially women, due to hormonal stress. A poor meal plan can also increase inflammation in the body, resulting in breakouts.

Some of the ingredients in VapoRub can ease minor breakouts by reducing the appearance of the pimple. It is also worth noting that other ingredients that the balm contains could aggravate the skin condition depending on the underlying cause thereof.

Cue The Water Works

This one may not be new for anyone involved in the entertainment industry. Sometimes tears are needed for a convincing performance but it’s never easy to cry on cue even for award-winning actors. Rubbing some VapoRub under the eyes always works like a charm in such cases.

It’s particularly helpful for photography or when filming a scene with close-up shots that could use the emotion of seeing tears rolling down the cheeks of the actor. Please still be careful not to get any of the VapoRub into the eyes or on the eyelashes.

Homemade Fat Burner

The only way to lose weight is to burn more calories than consumed. Slimming down calls for a combination of adopting healthier lifestyle choices including eating in smaller quantities and exercising more frequently. Spot reduction, which refers to losing weight from one part of the body, is a myth because weight loss affects the entire body.

There’s no scientific proof to back it, but some people claim that a slimming gel made from VapoRub, rubbing alcohol, baking soda, and camphor powder can help burn fat. Apply the mixture to the desired area and cover it with plastic wrap. Too much menthol can spark skin irritation, therefore, be careful when using this homemade remedy.

Prevents Pets From Doing Their Business Indoors

It’s never a pleasant activity having to clean up after a dog’s mess indoors. VapoRub can help in the process of training the pup to go about their business outdoors. Just rub a bit of the ointment around the indoor areas the pet likes to go about its business.

The strong scent can chase them away from those spots, and as potty training continues, they’ll likely get with the program and start going outdoors. Worth noting is that the constituents of Vicks, particularly camphor, are toxic to dogs. In general, the smell coupled with a dog’s “smell memory” helps to steer them away.

Stops Itching

Itchiness is caused by irritation related to mosquito bites, other bug bites, very dry skin, or exposure to allergens. It helps to identify the cause behind the persistent itching when looking for relief from the condition, especially if it’s consistent.

However, rub some VapoRub on the area experiencing itchiness and it may offer some relief. The eucalyptus oil in the balm offers healing properties, whereas the menthol soothes the skin from the itching sensation. If VapoRub doesn’t work, make sure to see a dermatologist for an accurate diagnosis and the right course of treatment.

Alleviates Earaches

There’s nothing as uncomfortable as dealing with an earache. Various health issues can spark an earache as a side effect. Much like a headache, an earache can put one down and prevent one from going about the day in a normal way.

Try putting some VapoRub on a cotton swab and place it in the ear. Leave it overnight and upon waking up in the morning, expect to feel improvement. Worth noting is that like in all other medical-related cases, VapoRub doesn’t cure the condition but it helps offer pain relief and some much-needed soothing. See a physician if dealing with an ear infection.

Opens Old Locks

Locks have mechanisms inside that can fail to work as they should if unused for a long time. Sometimes a key left in the lock may also get stuck inside it. Often it’s because the lock needs some lubrication to get it working as it should.

Once again, VapoRub can come to the rescue to clean out old locks and restore their lubrication to get them working as they should. Apply the balm to the hinges on the lock liberally to lubricate these parts, and in the case of a key, apply the ointment on the key too.

Makes Stuck Zippers Work Again

Bags, jackets, footwear, and other clothes with zippers can get stuck at some point. If forcefully tugging and pulling at them, the zipper may break, and worse still, a stuck zipper might render a favorite outfit completely unwearable in the future.

As long as there’s some Vicks VapoRub nearby, one can fix a stuck zipper in no time. It lubricates the zipper and that should help move it along the track. Note that this only works to fix stuck zippers and not broken zipper tracks which usually need replacement.

Boosts A Humidifier

If using a humidifier at home to help make breathing easier at night, then one can include some Vicks VapoRub in it to help clear out the lungs. This is for the humidifiers that allow one to add components to the tank.

If the vaporizer or humidifier has an aromatherapy compartment, then one can easily add the VapoRub in it so that it releases the refreshing scent around the room. Be careful because if the humidifier doesn’t have this provision. Adding VapoRub, which is a flammable product under certain conditions, can be dangerous.

Tackles Ticks

When the sweltering summer heat strikes, many of us find ourselves spending a considerable amount of time in the great outdoors. Whether just relaxing in the backyard or out camping, there is a risk of being exposed to tick bites.

It is a challenge getting the tick off once it bites and is not the most pleasant of activities. Just rub some VapoRub to the area where it has bitten and the strong scent should make the tick release its hold. The VapoRub can also offer some much-needed soothing and relief to the affected area.

DIY Candle

Candles serve several functions beyond just illuminating a home. Aromatherapy candles can help relaxation, and some are great decorative pieces that add a finishing touch to various rooms in the house. Originally, candles were made using whale fat but these days they are primarily made using paraffin wax.

It turns out that VapoRub can also be used to make DIY candles. Simply place a small amount of VaporRub on some cotton wool, place it in a flame-proof container, and light it up. There are also ready-made VapoRub candles these days to benefit from the refreshing scents released while they burn.

Banish Coughs Through The Feet

A common use for Vicks VapoRub is treating coughs and colds. Usually, one would rub the balm on the chest to treat coughs or beneath the nose if dealing with a cold. There is another way to go about it, though.

Some people believe that rubbing the ointment on the feet right before turning in for the day can help beat a cough. Like with other remedies calling for applying the balm right before going to bed, wear socks so that the balm doesn’t transfer to the bedding.

Treats Cracked Heels

The heels are also prone to dryness, particularly during winter. It becomes particularly pronounced when not moisturizing the feet properly and the condition can become very painful. VapoRub offers a solution to alleviate dryness while also restoring the natural state of the skin.

Much like treating dry skin on any other part of the body; apply VapoRub to the heels and put on socks to prevent the ointment from rubbing off. This allows the product to properly get absorbed into the skin even if walking around. The petroleum jelly content in VapoRub locks in the moisture on the skin helping to combat dryness.

Treats Fungal Infections

Fungal nail infections can affect any part of the body, but the Onychomycosis type typically affects the toenails or fingernails. It occurs when fungi overgrowth is observed around the nail. Pre-existing fungal infections on a different part of the body can travel to the nail. Coming into contact with someone suffering from the condition can also trigger the infection.

If there’s an outgrowth of fungi on the toenails, rub VapoRub on the affected area around the nail. Thymol is a useful ingredient in the balm which offers antibacterial and antiseptic properties. It could be used to treat fungal infections allowing the toenails to keep growing healthily.

Combats A Dry Scalp

A dry scalp is a result of the skin not getting enough moisture. A dry scalp is evident when the skin around the area starts peeling and becomes irritated. It isn’t only isolated to the skin near the scalp, but the legs and arms may also become dry depending on the severity.

Apply VapoRub to the affected areas after showering or before going to bed. The eucalyptus oil in the balm combined with other ingredients help restore the moisture to the scalp. Consider adopting a moisturizing conditioner as part of the process of combating a dry scalp.

Offers Relief From Eczema Symptoms

Eczema is a condition where the skin is irritated or appears inflamed. It can manifest itself in different forms and the common type is referred to as atopic dermatitis. Eczema is quite common and affects 10–20% of infants and an estimated 3% of adults. Usually, children outgrow the condition by the time they are ten years old while others battle the symptoms throughout their lives.

Applied to the affected areas several times throughout the day, VapoRub can ease discomfort. The ointment also offers a soothing effect while reducing inflammation. It also helps minimize the appearance of blemishes and combat dry patches resulting in an overall clearer complexion.

Using It For Aromatherapy

Menthol isn’t exactly a pleasant smell for everyone, but some people grow fond of it. Given its benefits, it doesn’t hurt to transform it into a form of aromatherapy for the home. Just add some of it to the air freshener or diffuser to have the scent dispensed throughout the house.

It also works as the perfect solution when experiencing the flu or having sensitive skin issues that prevent one from rubbing the ointment on the skin. Even when not sick, it never hurts to have the refreshing scent floating around to freshen up the house.

Clearing Warts

Warts are small growths with rough textures that can form on any part of the body. The human papillomavirus (HPV) causes rapid and excessive growth of the hard protein keratin resulting in these growths forming on the skin’s top layer. They may resemble solid blisters but their location in the body usually affects their appearance.

Some people swear by dabbing a bit of VapoRub on their warts and covering them with a clean cloth or sock. If done at least twice daily and over a course of two weeks, it could help in clearing up warts. A few people might experience irritation but for many, it works just fine.

Keeping Horses Focused

When it’s mating season for horses, it becomes difficult for male horses to follow the rider’s commands because they easily get distracted by the scent of nearby female horses. Even a horse’s favorite treats are not enough to keep it focused.

Rubbing a very small amount of VapoRub underneath the horse’s nose should solve the problem. The scent of the menthol masks other smells around allowing the horse to stay focussed. Equestrian experts say that the VapoRub can also help offer some relief to horses suffering from COPD and reactive airway diseases.

Protecting The Furniture

Just like dogs, cats don’t particularly like the scent of Vicks and it can help to prevent them from soiling areas around the house when they are still being potty trained. Cats also have the knack for clawing at furniture and they may end up causing some costly damage.

Rub small amounts of the ointment on furniture, walls, and doors where cats are unwanted when they are alone in the house. The same trick works for a cat that likes to scratch people. Rubbing the VapoRub on the arms or legs will save the skin.

Healing Minor Cuts And Wounds

Got cuts and scrapes that seem to be healing at a snail’s pace? A bit of VapoRub might be the answer to that. Applying a layer of it on minor cuts and wounds once or twice a day can speed up the healing process in no time.

Just remember to be careful when putting the ointment in on or around open wounds as the stuff can sting and lead to more irritation. If done right, though, the thick formula of Vicks can create a protective barrier for scrapes to heal without risk of infection.

Fade Bruises Faster

For those who live active lifestyles, bruises can become a fact of life. The good news is that it’s a problem Vicks might just solve in a matter of minutes. Yes, rubbing some of the mentholated ointment on minor marks can magically fade those bruised spots faster.

There’s really no magic involved in the process, though. It’s just the power of menthol to alleviate inflammation at work. Dermatologist Howard Sobel said that this effect is due to the cooling element of menthol, which can calm the affected area of the skin.

Relieve Arthritis Aches

Older people know the aches and pains that come with arthritis well. They’ve probably even spent many days writhing from the swelling and stiffness that the joint disease brings with it. While over-the-counter medication is typically recommended, one can also benefit from a good tub of Vicks.

The eucalyptus oil content of VapoRub means that it can help soothe arthritis aches and reduce swelling, too. Experts believe this is all thanks to a natural chemical called 1,8-cineole, which is found in the leaf-derived oil. To reap the said benefit, slather on a layer of Vicks on the area of the affected joint.

Stop Night Coughs

Being sick is already enough of an inconvenience. Now, imagine losing precious sleep due to night coughing. Don’t fret, though, Vicks might fix that issue in a jiffy. Because of its 2.6% menthol content, the ointment helps to relieve constant coughing.

What’s more, it’s safe to use with kids. Just rub a helping of it on their chest before bedtime and their sleep won’t be interrupted as much by constant hacking. Still, it’s worth noting that VapoRub isn’t actually a cure. Don’t hesitate to ask a doctor for cough medicine recommendations to get to the root of the problem.

Masking Noxious Odors

One more thing people love about Vicks is its distinct, refreshing smell. And guess what? Not only can its mixture of scents and oils decongest a clogged nose, but it can also come in handy for people with a sensitive sense of smell.

Interestingly, VapoRub has also been used by various professionals. Paramedics and even crime scene detectives say it helps them block out the noxious odors that come with their line of work. A small dab of it under the nostrils practically works as a scent mask that overpowers nearby scents around.

Treating Ringworm

Another nifty use for VapoRub is treating ringworm. The skin condition is caused by a fungal infection that is usually passed on from person to person contact. It gets its name from the ring-like shape of the infected area of the skin. So, how can a mentholated ointment help in combating it?

Well, to be honest, even medical experts aren’t sure about the secret behind Vicks’ healing powers against ringworm. They do note, though, that people have successfully treated their itchy spots with it. Besides, there’s no harm in trying a simple and affordable remedy that’s worked for many.

Chest Decongestion

Alleviating chest congestions is probably one of the well-known uses of Vicks. What many don’t know, though, is the many ways it can be administered to reap its decongestion benefits. Starting with the easy, VapoRub can simply be massaged onto the chest and nearby areas to get relief.

Others go the extra mile and draw a steam bath. This means adding some Vicks to a container of warm water and then inhaling the steam that is emitted from the mixture. Sounds like some kind of spa therapy, doesn’t it? Aside from decongesting, this can also help one relax.

Cool Down Sunburn

Sunburns are just the price people have to pay for enjoying a sunny day a little too much. That doesn’t mean we should be content to endure the consequences. Lucky for sun worshippers, Vicks can be used as a way to alleviate some of the pain and warmth that comes with this skin irritation.

Some people have found that slathering on some VapoRub over a sunburn can help to cool down the affected area. Just be sure to pair this remedy with a good anti-aging skin care routine to counter the aging effects of overexposure to the sun.

Prevent Infections

Aboriginal people have been using eucalyptus oil ointments as a natural remedy for a long time. So, it should come as no surprise that Vicks, which also contains the antibacterial ingredient, can be used to prevent bacterial infections, too. That said, how exactly can VapoRub be used for this purpose?

A person need not think outside the box. Simply rub some Vicks on a new wound or cut to protect it from being infected. Just make sure that the area is clean before doing so to avoid unwittingly rubbing any existing bacteria into the open cut.

Instant Hemorrhoid Relief

Hemorrhoids may not be a disease in itself, but having one (or a couple) is definitely not an enjoyable experience at all. Whether internal or external, the swelling it causes in the rectal region can drive anybody crazy with discomfort. Creams specifically formulated for the condition are typically recommended but Vicks can also provide instant relief.

The website People’s Pharmacy has heard plenty of positive experiences from their readers who have tried to use VapoRub for hemorrhoids. Many said that the ointment reduced both itching and swelling in their rectal area. Of course, experts warn people of adverse health effects if Vicks is accidentally used internally. So, always be careful!

Reduce Rosacea Symptoms

Rosacea is a skin ailment that many people suffer from. But although there’s no shame in that, there’s also nothing wrong with trying remedies to sort out redness and visible blood vessels that come with it. VapoRub seems to be the go-to of some sufferers to reduce these symptoms.

A Statesboro Herald reader, for example, wrote to the paper’s medical expert to share how a bit of Vicks cleared up their rosacea. They said that pairing it with some Clearasil solved their decades-long problem. It’s important to note, though, that there are no studies that have tested this remedy yet.

Fighting Athlete’s Foot

Depending on the severity, athlete’s foot can range from slightly uncomfortable to downright painful. It’s caused by the tinea fungus and is often accompanied by blisters and itchy rashes. Thankfully, these symptoms are nothing that a tub of Vaporub can’t alleviate!

Because of the ointment’s menthol and eucalyptus oil ingredients, it’s well-equipped to fight off fungal infections like athlete’s foot. Just rub some of the stuff on the affected area every night and massage it into the skin. Making a week-long or month-long regimen out of this is guaranteed to get rid of the condition.

Quick Remedy For Insect Bites

Being outdoors is a fun way to enjoy days with good weather. But the experience, unfortunately, also comes guaranteed with a couple of pesky bug bites. The good news is those annoying stings, be they be from a bee or mosquito, can be remedied pretty quickly.

A little dab of VapoRub on the affected area is an easy way to remedy the itchiness that comes with bug bites. That’s because the ointment has a ton of menthol, which has anesthetic properties, in it. Likewise, toothpaste can be used in lieu of it, although Vick’s should be the preferred treatment because it’s designed for skin application.

Staving Off Wrinkles

Not everyone’s willing to spend the big bucks for anti-aging concoctions. The good news is that VapoRub might just be all one needs to stave off fine lines. Some people have shared how the menthol-infused ointment has helped them fight the signs of aging, especially the occasional wrinkle in the neck and décolletage area.

According to pharmacist Shabir Daya, these positive results might be attributed to the combination of camphor and menthol found in Vicks and similar products. The ingredients can not just cool the skin but also have an instant tightening effect on it.