A good survival kit always has that one versatile item that can do a lot of things really well. For most of us, Vaseline and other petroleum jelly products fill this role pretty nicely. However, did you know that one ubiquitous house item can do all the things vaseline can, and then some?
Enter Vicks VapoRub, you know, the one your mom and grandma used to rub on you when you have a cold. This item can do a lot of things the Vaseline can, and a few others it can’t!
This fact isn’t surprising given that Vicks VapoRub is mostly made out of petroleum jelly, the same stuff as vaseline. It has many well known healing and sealing properties that are very important in survival situations. However, because Vicks mixes the petroleum jelly with other substances, it has a few interesting benefits besides fighting cold and nasal congestion that preppers sometimes forget.
21 Reasons Why Vicks VapoRub is an Essential Prepper Item
Here are 21 reasons why vicks VapoRub is an important item to have in your survival kit. Did you know that VapoRub can do all this? Check it out!
Treating Nail Fungus
Vicks has anti-fungal properties that helps it kill all kinds of fungus. Because of that, when you have nail fungus, you can use the VapoRub to help treat and eliminate it.
Nail fungus is a serious problem when you basically live in your shoes day in day out, which is basically what preppers and survivalists might do when they’re stranded in the middle of nowhere. It may also occur if your socks and boots are damp for a long time, a given if you’re stranded in tropical or humid areas.
Helps with Athletes Foot
Athletes foot is a fungal infection that usually begins in the toes. It commonly happens to people that have very sweaty foot that’s constrained to a tight fitting shoe, like the ones athletes use.
Preppers and survivors may catch this kind of infection if they’re stranded in wet and humid places. Places where fungus readily grows. Luckily, as we’ve established before, Vicks has antifungal properties and can kill nail fungus, which is not that much different compared to athletes foot.
Rub a small amount of Vicks on your foot after cleaning it and drying it to help remove athletes foot. Don’t forget to change your damp shoes and socks to prevent your foot catching athletes foot again!
Treats Eczema Inflamation
If you have one, you know how irritating an eczema could be. Luckily, the petroleum jelly and menthol present in Vicks can help reduce the inflammation and itchiness of eczema. Simply rub a generous amount of VapoRub on the affected area and feel the menthol drown the itchiness and soothe the inflammation.
One of the main ingredients in Vicks VapoRub is Menthol which helps lower blood pressure. Besides, menthol has a soothing scent that acts as an aromatherapy.
Rub a generous amount in your temples and forehead to relieve a headache. To help with sinus based headaches, simply rub it on your temples and throat.
Functions as a Moisturizer
Because of the petroleum jelly present in Vicks, it’s a very good emollient, which means that it moisturizes by keeping moisture trapped in your skin longer. Rub a thin layer of VapoRub after infusing moisture to your skin, either by spraying water or by taking a bath.
Well moisturized skin is very important, especially if you’re trying to survive in dry and cold areas where there is very little moisture. If not well moisturized, your skin could crack and become painful, which might impede your survival chances.
Healing Cuts and Splinters
Vicks VapoRub, like all petroleum jelly products can help seal and heal small wounds. Clean your wounds then gently rub a generous amount of VapoRub to hasten the healing process.
However, if you have large gaping wounds, Vicks and other petroleum jelly products will not help. You need to sanitize it first then stitch it up.
When you’re out and about in tropical areas, bringing a mosquito repellent is very-very important. Luckily, Vicks VapoRub can be used to help repel mosquitoes if you forget to bring the real deal.
The strong scent will deter bugs from coming your way. Besides that, the ingredients will make your skin feel nice and cool in tropical areas, a win-win!
Relieves Ear Ache
Ear aches are usually caused by infection. To soothe the pain, you can rub a small amount of Vicks on your ears and let the menthol drown out the pain.
However, keep in mind that this does not clear the infection, it merely soothes the pain!
If you have skin that easily bruises, Vicks can be your best friend when it comes to healing them. Just mix a pinch of salt into a handful of Vicks and gently rub it onto any areas of the skin that are bruised.
It will help to dissolve the bruise and your skin will return to normal in no time! Just repeat the process until you no longer see the bruise.
Relieves Sore Muscles
The menthol contained in Vicks can also improve your blood circulation and relieve sore muscles. After a demanding physical activity or a long day, gently rub a generous amount of Vicks on areas that are sore.
This is a gamechanger for physically active preppers that need sore muscle relief on the go. This is also very important for preppers that are not used to demanding physical activity, because their muscles will become sore more easily.
Remember the time when you were young? your mom and grandma used Vicks to treat everything from colds to coughs. This still applies today!
To soothe coughs, rub a generous amount of Vicks in your chest or throat and watch as the cough subsides. Some people also puts a generous amount in their foot just before wearing their socks. Try it yourself and find the best method of rubbing on Vicks.
Survivors and preppers that live in dry, sunny areas are already aware how important having a good sunscreen is to prevent sunburns and other form of irritation by sunlight radiation. However, if you inexplicably find yourself without a sunscreen and got sunburn, you can use Vicks to soothe the red skin.
Gently rub a light amount of Vicks to get rid of the stinging sensation of sunburnt skin. It will make your skin feel cool and will eventually help the redness go away.
Soothe Chapped Lips
As we’ve said, Vicks can be used as a decent moisturizer because it contains generous amounts of petroleum jelly. This substance acts as an emollient that can trap moisture in your skin. Because of that, it can also be used to soothe and moisturize chapped lips due to dry air exposure.
However, make sure not to apply too much or it might just come in your mouth. Not everyone can stand the taste of menthol directly inside their mouth.
Itchiness is one of the most irritating skin conditions to deal with, especially when you’re in the wild trying to survive. If you’re in the tropics, it’s compounded by bug bites and mosquitos that are present in large numbers.
Apply some VapoRub on bug bites or dry skin and let the petroleum jelly work with the mentholatum to soothe the itch.
Prevent Skin Infection
Burns and other skin wounds are frequently caught by survivors or preppers when they’re out and about in the wild. These can become infected if you don’t take proper precautions to treat them.
The best solution would be to use standard first aid kit to cleanse, sterilize, then treat and close the wound so that it does not become infected. However, Vicks can also be used in an emergency to seal the wound and prevent infection.
Apply some VapoRub to the area to seal the wound and prevent infection. If the condition worsens, be sure to consult to a medical professional.
Relieves Night Cough
Night cough and difficulty of sleeping are two frequent things that are experienced by survivors. Either because of stress, flu, or other infections.
To get a good night sleep, you can rub a generous amount of Vicks on your feet before going to bed. It’s soothing properties will reduce your night time cough and helps you sleep better.
Functions as a Lubricant
Vicks VapoRub, like all petroleum jelly products can act as an emergency lubricant for doors and other mechanical parts. If you need to open a door or loosen a bolt, generously spread vicks VapoRub on it and watch it slide.
Masks Bad Smells
Stocking up prepper items on a damp shed, looking for supplies out and about in an abandoned warehouse, trash diving to find valuables, all in a days work for a prepper right? If you want to help your nose a little, apply some VapoRub under your nose.
The mentholatum will clear your sinuses and provide a fresh, menthol scented air for you to breathe. Trust us, your nose and sanity will thank you for it!
However, don’t put too much that you lose the ability to discern scent, there might be poisonous material or animal territorial scents there that might be better off left untouched.
Hemorrhoids are a pain in the butt, literally! Luckily, for small and itchy hemorrhoids, you can apply Vicks on it and let the menthol drown out the itch so you won’t be tempted to scratch it.
However, be mindful that menthol does have a burning cold sensation, it may become amplified by the sensitive skin in and near the hemorrhoid, make sure that you can tolerate it!
Ringworms are quite a nuisance, especially if you’re living in damp humid places. Don’t be confused, ringworm isn’t caused by a worm, it’s caused by a certain kind of fungus that irritates the skin and makes it itchy and scaly.
According to Dr Peter H Gott and Jared Zeiman, Vicks as well as several other forms of generic mentholated chest rubs has been successfully used to treat a variety of conditions, including nail fungus, psoriasis, plaque, seborreic keratoses, ringworm, neuropathy pain, and more.
Because of that, if you do have a case of ringworm, apply a thin layer of Vicks two or three times a day to soothe the itchiness and help treat it.
However, do use antifungal medication to fully and quickly treat the fungus, Vicks may or may not fully cure it, depending on the severity. If it persists, then you need to seek professional medical help.
Heals Burnt Skin
Burnt skin is an ever present danger when you’re out and about in the wilds or trying to survive dangerous urban situations such as a terrorist attack or bank robbery. If not treated quickly, it can cause inflammation and permanent tissue damage.
Luckily, Vicks can help soothe burnt skin, just like petroleum jelly. After running the burn through cold water to clean it up, apply VapoRub to the injury to seal in moisture and hasten healing.
This remedy should help soothe the sting of the burn and increase tissue healing speed. However, it’s always better to use dedicated burn treatments that are specifically made to treat burnt skin.
Now you know the benefits that Vicks VapoRub and other name brand chest rubs have, don’t forget to stock a few for your EDC and survival packs! You never know when you might need them, having them in your bug out bag might just save your life!