Do you know that Petroleum Jelly was discovered more than 100 years ago?
This product is derived from oil and has numerous skin benefits.
It was first used by oil workers to soothe their wounds. Since then Vaseline became a popular petroleum jelly brand.
It is essentially a jelly-like substance which is a mixture of wax and mineral oils, also known as petrolatum.
However, the most beneficial ingredient is petroleum itself that retains moisture with a water protective barrier and also seals the surface of the skin healing wounds.
This article discusses its numerous benefits and uses. Keep reading to know how you can safely use it to get better skin.
What is Petroleum Jelly Used For?
Its ultimate use is for healing wounds and sealing them.
That is also how it was discovered in the first place.
Whenever you get a minor cut or burn, you can apply a small amount of it to your wound.
Though, it can also moisturize skin after surgery to promote healing.
This can work better for a scar as the skin is moist, it prevents the skin from drying out and forming a scab.
Wounds that have scabs heal slower than those without it.
Applying Vaseline will retain the moisture to prevent the scar from enlarging and becoming itchy.
According to the American Academy of Dermatology Association, you will not need to use an antibacterial ointment if you clean the wound and use vaseline or any other petroleum jelly on it.
Therefore, disinfect the surface before applying vaseline as it forms a skin barrier.
This can trap bacteria and other particles on your skin and in contact with your wound, worsening the injury.
It helps to retain the moisture in your skin by providing a barrier over it.
Your skin does not absorb it, hence it provides protection from dirt and bacteria in the form of a barrier that prevents the escape of moisture.
You can apply it in several different ways:
- Use it on your face for dry skin. It is especially useful for dry and irritated skin in cold.
- You can apply it to your chapped lips. This will help smoothen your lips.
- Use it under your nose to prevent irritation in the skin from a runny nose.
- Apply it on your dry hands and cracked heels. Soak them in warm water with some salt and then apply a layer of vaseline to retain the moisture. Over time you’ll notice changes in your skin.
Benefits for Skin
Vaseline no only prevents the skin’s moisture from escaping, it can also manage skin conditions like eczema.
Your skin or your newborns can get itchy, scaly patches known as eczema. Vaseline is effective in preventing eczema in newborns that are susceptible to it.
Hence, preventing outbreaks. Moreover, people with eczema are likely to be at risk of breakouts because of chafing.
As the skin rubs against clothing and other body parts, it can cause eczema, rashes and broken skin.
Hence, using vaseline or any other petrolatum can help certain problem areas from getting cuts and breakouts beforehand and prevent chafing.
Speaking of rashes, petrolatum can also soothe your baby’s diaper rashes.
Apply petroleum jelly using a small amount to their rashes after cleaning and drying.
Most babies develop rashes after staying long in wet diapers. Hence, make sure that they are dry and then apply vaseline which helps lock the moisture preventing the incidence of uncomfortable rashes.
It will stop the skin from coming in contact with moisture curing existing rashes and preventing new ones.
While you can use skincare products like oil cleansers or water-based cleansers to remove makeup, your household vaseline is also a good product to add to your skincare routine for makeup removal.
After all, it is also derived from oil. Hence, it is useful in gently removing makeup, especially of the eyes.
Apply some on your eyes and gently wipe the makeup using a cotton pad.
It can even remove stubborn eyeliners, mascara and eye shadow from your eyes.
Though, you don’t want it getting in your eyes so keep them shut while you use it.
Vaseline is a part of several home remedies, read more on that below.
Did you know that you can also use Vaseline as a conditioner? That too, not only for your hair but also for your lashes?
Your hair dries up because of sun exposure. After a certain growth, your hair will have split ends.
Vaseline can smoothen your dry hair and add shine to it. Apply some of it on your palm and then on your hair.
It can help significantly decrease the appearance of split ends.
Moreover, it can also become a conditioner for your lashes. Skip the mascara and apply a small amount delicately on your lashes.
You will get fuller and darker eyelashes plus you do not need to worry about tearing them while removing your waterproof mascara.
As petrolatum establishes a skin barrier, it can help remove and prevent stains on it.
Your skin can stain due to the use of hair dyes and nail polish.
Apply it on your hairline when you dye your hair so that it does not stain it. Similarly, use some of it around your nails so that the nail polish only sticks to your nails and not your skin.
It also heals dry nail beds and cuticles so that your nail polish application is as smooth as possible.
You can get a perfect manicure without the use of additional cleanup.
Though, Vaseline not only removes makeup stains from your skin but also sheets and clothes.
Use a damp washcloth and vaseline on the stains and rub together to remove the stain effectively.
These aren’t all, petrolatum has other numerous benefits such as:
- It holds fragrance for a long time. Rub some of it on areas you would spray the perfume and notice the difference.
- It can control frizz in your hair and control its dryness.
- Prevents blisters from forming in feet and heals. Apply some of it to your feet to avoid cracks and scratches.
- Similarly, it can protect the paws of your pet from cold and salt.
- Applying some Vaseline on your earlobes can help your earrings slide inside easily. It can also easily remove a stuck ring on your finger.
- It can also help soothe psoriasis and atopic dermatitis in babies.
Petroleum Jelly is generally safe to use, however, you should take certain precautions before using it. Let’s learn about that below!
Is Petroleum Jelly Bad?
No, it is actually pretty safe to use on your skin.
Emollients like petrolatum hardly cause side effects. That said, you can still have a risk of a reaction, experiencing redness, burning sensation and tingling.
While this incidence is rare, immediately consult your doctor if you notice irritation and swelling after use.
Vaseline is non-comedogenic and safe to use on the skin. However, it is best used for dry skin.
Remember, that petrolatum is essential an oil-based product made from fossil fuels.
Hence, if you use it on oily skin, you run the risk of clogging pores. This in return will further lead to breakouts.
Therefore, it is not the best option for oily and acne-prone skin. You can get even more acne scars after its use.
One way to prevent clogging is to clean and exfoliate the skin properly before applying vaseline.
Also, vaseline is not the most ideal product to use over a sunburn. Oil products are likely to retain heat inside your skin.
Your sunburn has to peel off so it may assist healing but will not undo the damage. A better product to use instead is aloe vera gel.
While it is safe to use on the skin, it is not safe to eat. A small amount will not cause much harm but a larger quantity can result in stomach cramps and diarrhea.
Furthermore, your child has a risk of choking on it if they eat a big amount.
You may not inhale mineral oils well. In fact, it can also cause aspiration pneumonia.
Vaseline and petroleum products contain mineral oils. Therefore, consult your doctor before you apply it under your nose so that you do not run the risk of aspiration pneumonia.
Always clean your skin and let it dry before applying. Otherwise, the bacteria and fungus can come in contact with skin and lead to infections.
You can be susceptible to bacterial vaginosis or other infections from a contaminated jar if you insert it into the vagina.
Furthermore, you may want to check for petroleum allergies before you use the product.
How to Use and Apply The Product?
Just follow the instructions and use as much as you require.
A little product goes a long way. So just apply according to your need until you feel your skin is moisturized enough.
If your doctor recommended you to use it then seek medical advice about the amount of application with them especially if you are using it for radiation skin burns.
Just be wary of not swallowing the product and keeping it for external use only otherwise, it is generally safe to use on the skin.
Petroleum jelly is a very useful product and it has innumerable benefits.
Though, like everything you should use it with caution especially on kids and pets.