Vicks VapoRub is a mentholated ointment that is often used to treat colds and minor aches and pains in joints or muscles.
Vicks was developed in 1894 by Lunsford Richardson, an American pharmacist, who used it to treat his own children. Its active ingredients include menthol, eucalyptus oil and camphor.
20 Uses for Vicks Vapor Rub
Here are 20 surprising Vicks VapoRub uses that people are re-discovering—and not all of them are related to health.
1.) Heals Cuts
A small amount of Vicks VapoRub can prevent infection and speed healing when applied to small wounds like those caused by splinters or minor cuts.
2.) Helps Actors
Vicks VapoRub can help an actor cry on command during an emotional scene. The thespian rubs a small amount of Vicks below their lower eyelids where bags and dark circles can form. After waiting 30 seconds, they wipe the Vicks with a tissue. Tears will start rolling down their face.
3.) Cat Repellant
Cats love scratching hard surfaces like walls, doors and windows – but they hate the smell of Vicks. Smear some Vicks on a cat’s favorite targets to make her stop scratching them. Smearing Vicks on yourself can keep a cat from scratching you as well.
4.) Heals Bruises
Vicks can also be used as a bruise treatment. It should be mixed with a pinch of salt and smeared on the bruise.
5.) Acne Remedy
Vicks can clear up acne by quickly drying out the pimples.
6.) Eczema Relief
Vicks VapoRub can provide relief from the inflammation and itchiness caused by eczema.
7.) Insect Repellent
Putting Vicks on your clothes will keep mosquitoes away. Putting it on your neck, elbows, knees and behind the ears will have the same effect. Placing an open container of Vicks next to you when you are sitting will also keep insect pests away.
8.) Skin Moisturizer
Vicks VapoRub can moisturize your dry skin. Simply apply it to the dry area and start feeling the results.
9.) Stops the Squeaks
Vicks can be used to lubricate door hinges and stop them from squeaking.
10.) Treats Nail Fungus
Applying Vicks to the affected nail twice a day will get rid of the fungus. As the Vicks kills the fungus, the affected nail will become dark. Keep using the Vicks for two weeks to completely kill the fungus.
11.) Headache Remedy
Vicks VapoRub relieves headaches for its scent eases the pressure within one’s head. Apply a small amount to the forehead and temples.
12.) Earache Pain Relief
While Vicks can’t clear up the infection that causes earaches, it can relieve the pain. Put some on a cotton ball and stick it in the ear for a few hours. Change the balls several times a day.
13.) Bug Bite Treatment
Ticks don’t like the smell of Vicks. Applying it to one’s skin will make a tick detach itself. Vicks can also relieve the itching caused by mosquito bits.
14.) House-training Pets
Dogs and cats both hate the scent of Vicks, so an open jar of it near a spot where they have had too many accidents will encourage them to relieve themselves elsewhere – like outdoors or in the litter box.
15.) Heals Cracked Heels
The ingredients in Vicks help it trap moisture. Before going to bed, slather Vicks on the heels and work it in for about five minutes and then put on cotton socks. The next morning, wash the feet in warm water.
16.) Controls Racehorses
Professional jockeys daub Vicks VapoRub under their horse’s nose before a race. Vicks’ strong odor blocks the alluring smell of any female horses in the vicinity and keeps the horse focused on the race.
17.) Soothes Minor Burns
Vicks cool feel can relieve the pain of minor burns. After rinsing the burn with water, apply some Vicks to it.
18.) Stretch Mark Reduction
In addition to the aforementioned camphor, eucalyptus oil and menthol, Vicks VapoRub also contains cedar leaf oil, turpentine oil and petrolatum. The various oils make the stretched skin feel softer and reduces the dryness that increase the visibility of stretch marks. The treatment takes two weeks.
19.) Athlete’s Foot Treatment
The same fungi that causes nail fungus can also cause athlete’s foot. To kill the fungus, apply Vicks VapoRub to the affected part of the foot twice a day.
20.) Relieve Chest Congestion
There are two ways Vicks VapoRub can be used to relieve chest congestion. One is to put it in a vaporizer and inhale the resulting hot steam. The other way is to simply apply it to the chest and neck.