September 27, 2013

Review : Aquaphor Healing Ointment

  • Type : Anti-chaffing/lubricant
  • Use : Distance running
  • Price : 5-15$

Ultra runners have the weirdest conversations. At a dinner one night with my friends the Millers, the stories quickly turned to chaffed groins and cracks, and I mentioned I once had severe issues because I'd forgotten my Vaseline.

Kimberley seemed surprised and asked «Why don't you use Aquaphor?», and then went on to explain how I could prevent chaffing without using chemicals on my skin. She got up and went back in the house, to come back with a Flint-sized, mini-tube of Aquaphor and told me to try it on my next run.

Trail test
A couple days later, I toed up the starting line of the awesome Javelina Jangover Night Run for a 50K in the Arizona desert, and used a generous serving of Aquaphor... under my compression shorts. The gel is way less sticky than regular Vaseline, includes some natural ingredients such as chamomille derivatives and some vitamins and feels light and fresh. I was somewhat concerned that it wouldn't stay on for the whole race, however, so I packed the mini-tube in my running vest.

Team Aquaphor runner Deborah Goodwin,
AKA VW Runner Girl, giving me the VIP treatment
I didn't feel any chaffing or friction whatsoever. Aquaphor worked like a charm, and stayed on as well. Late in the run, I stopped for some, eehhrrr, squatting meditation behind a large rock and was pleased to see that after 6 hours of running, my skin was intact and I didn't need to add any more of the stuff.

I went on to finish my race and, for a celebration, I was cheered in by Deborah Goodwin from Team Aquaphor, who litterally swept me off my feet and cheerfully transported me to the aid station – and delicious watermelon. I sure felt like a champ:)

Aquaphor works. Although it is dye- and fragrance-free, it does use petrolatum, which is the same petroleum derivative found in Vaseline. However, I liked the feel of the gel and the fact that it stays on for a long time. It efficiently prevents chaffing and I will be using it again on my long runs and races.

High points
  • Includes natural extracts and vitamins
  • Feels fresh and light
  • Stays on for hours

Low points
  • Still uses petrolatum

The material for this personal review was supplied by Aquaphor free of charge, without any conditions.


  1. Over here in the alps of Austria, Switzerland and Germany we can get something called Hirschtalgcreme. My preferred brand is Holzhacker. I'm sure it doesn't contain any chemicals. is the website written on the tube.

  2. Just wanted to add that Aquaphor is made of the exact same thing as vaseline, which is petroleum jelly. So calling vaseline chemicals, whilst Aquaphor is not is just wrong.

    1. 100% agreed. They are made with the same basic ingredient. They are both chemical-based.