While many medical treatments from the early 1900s have been vehemently debunked, a handful have managed to stand the test of time. At the top of this list is Vicks VapoRub, a topical cough suppressant designed to clear the sinuses and alleviate the symptoms of the common cold. But in addition to this marketed use, Vicks has a handful of other, lesser-known uses that are far more interesting (and no less effective). Here are 10 of the best uses for Vicks VapoRub that just might surprise you.
1. Improve Your Skin
If you suffer from eczema or acne, one of the top uses for Vicks VapoRub is helping to soothe skin, reduce inflammation, and clear up your complexion.
2. Deter Insects
We may be fans of Vicks, but insects decidedly are not. Dab a bit on your arms, legs, neck, or other areas of exposed skin to keep bugs (including mosquitoes) at bay.
3. Treat an Earache
Visiting an ear, nose, and throat doctor is your best bet for clearing up an ear infection, but placing a cotton ball dabbed with Vicks in your ear for several hours can help to reduce the irritating symptoms associated with an earache.
3. Reduce Stretch Marks
If you're looking to fade the appearance of stretch marks, this is one of most surprising uses for Vicks VapoRub. Apply to the affected area daily to see results within a couple of weeks.
4. Point Pets in the Right Direction
If you have a cat that’s destroying your walls, couch cushions, or any other beloved furniture item, you can get them to stop scratching by spraying the area in question with Vicks VapoRub.
5. Heal Your Feet
Vicks VapoRub is a common home remedy used to alleviate certain foot conditions, including athlete’s foot and cracked heels.
6. Fade Bruising
For minor bruises, one of the best uses for Vicks VapoRub is to lessen swelling and inflammation. Simply add a pinch of salt to the liquid and apply it directly to your bruise to expedite the healing process.
7. Treat Cuts and Scrapes
While you may not want to add a pinch of salt for this one, Vicks VapoRub can work wonders when it comes to healing minor cuts and scrapes. Apply to clean skin once or twice daily until the affected area is healed.
8. Moisturize Skin
For especially dry skin, Vicks VapoRub offers a surprisingly effective fix. Apply to cracked, weather-damaged areas to restore your skin to its natural softness and smoothness.
9. Alleviate a Headache
If you suffer from sinus headaches, one of the best uses for Vicks VapoRub is to simply breathe it the scent. This quick fix can help to clear your head and alleviate cranial pain.
10. Ease Muscle Soreness
To walk back the negative sensations of an intense workout, apply a bit of Vicks VapoRub to the affected area. This method is especially effective when combined with a hot compress.
Vicks VapoRub Lavender Scent Cough Suppressant Ointment ($5)
Up next, read on for 15 little-known hacks for using Vaseline.