Aquaphor is a family of skin care products that are designed to relieve cuts, wounds, dry skin, cracked heels, and chapped lips. They also have products that are gentle enough to be used on skin problems of babies. However, some people experience having side-effects like burning, itching, rashes, and even difficulty in breathing.
There are natural alternatives that can help moisturize the skin and accelerate the healing of cuts and wounds, without the possible unwanted effects caused by the use of Aquaphor. These alternatives not only do wonders on the skin, they also make things a lot better for the body internally as well. Another good thing is that these alternatives are very easy to come by, most of them might already be available in the kitchen right now.
Of course, before choosing an alternative to use, ask a dermatologist first to see if it won’t cause any problems to the skin.
Here are a couple of natural alternatives to Aquaphor:
1.) Aloe Vera:
The North African plant is famous for its transparent gel that is used for many different purposes, from cosmetic to medicinal. Many beauty and hygienic products include aloe vera in their ingredients due to its efficacy in treating skin disorders. With vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and enzymes, aloe vera also has antifungal and antibacterial properties that help wounds close while protecting it from possible infections. The leaves contain the gel that can be easily extracted with a spoon. Different uses include:
a.) Dab a cotton ball on the gel and rub it on dry skin, feet, lips, or wounds.
b.) Mix the gel with some olive oil and shea butter until it becomes pasty. Apply the mix on the skin, wait for up to 20 minutes, and then rinse off with cold water to retain the moisture.
Always choose fresh aloe vera leaves and stay away from products that claim to be made of “organic” aloe vera. These products may have chemicals added to the ingredients that may prove to be harmful to the skin.
Dubbed as a super food due to its vast amount of antioxidants, healthy acids, and vitamins, avocado is good for the whole body inside and out. It has carotenoids that maintain well-being of skin, vitamins C and E for the protection of skin against toxins and environmental damage, and oleic acid for enhanced skin cell regeneration. Eating avocado on a regular basis, whether as is or in other forms like guacamole, ensures good skin health. Aside from that, the oils extracted in avocado can be topically applied as a moisturizer for dry lips, feet, and skin. Apply the oil on affected areas, let it dry for at least 15 minutes, then wash off and pat it dry with a clean cloth.
Also known as pot marigold, the petals of its flower were used by Hindus to decorate sacred places, fabrics, and food, and were regarded by the Egyptians for its healing capabilities. The high flavonoid content of calendula, or antioxidants that originate from plants, is responsible for the herb’s ability to ward off free radicals, bacteria, and inflammation. When applied to the skin, calendula helps cuts, wounds, and burns heal in a faster rate, and it is especially useful for people whose wound healing capabilities are stunted due to their immune systems being compromised. It is also known to help the skin maintain hydration to avoid dryness, and fight infections that can harm the skin. Calendula is available in cream, extract, ointment, and tincture forms, and there are fresh and dried petals available as well for homemade tinctures.
4.) Easy Lip Exfoliation:
Dry, chapped lips certainly aren’t neither comfortable nor appealing to look at. Some people instinctively lick their lips just to bring back moisture, but it actually harms the lips as saliva destroys the skin layer and exacerbates dryness. Aside from that, a deficiency in vitamins B2 and B6, and some lipsticks and cosmetic products cause this unwanted side-effect. Fortunately there are a few ways to moisturize dry lips with ingredients that are readily available in the kitchen:
a.) Mix sugar and olive oil in a bowl until it attains a pasty consistency. Using a clean cloth, rub the mix on the lips for a good amount of time as it is more effective the longer it stays on the lips. Afterwards, wash it away with warm water and apply lip balm to rehydrate. The ingredients are safe to be swallowed should a few amounts of the mix make their way into the mouth.
b.) Apply a small amount of petroleum jelly on the lips with the use of a toothbrush with very soft bristles, and let it sit until the lips are completely hydrated and refreshed.
c.) Mix a small amount of baking soda and water until it becomes gritty. Dab a toothbrush, again with very soft bristles, on the mix and apply it on the lips. Alternatively, a cloth can be used as well. After rinsing off with warm water, a lip balm must be applied as the mix does not moisturize the lips when removed.
Studies attribute honey as an effective and affordable remedy for wounds, and this is backed up by texts that assure honey’s efficacy throughout ancient history, including the Bible and the Koran. It has powerful anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties that encourage fast wound healing and keep it safe from bacteria and other harmful microbes. Some uses include:
a.) Honey can be directly applied to a wound for faster and safe recovery. It also works on burns and eczema.
b.) Being a known humectant, or an excellent preserver of moisture, honey greatly moisturizes dry skin. Simply spread a teaspoon across the dry skin and let it stay for up to 20 minutes before washing off with water.
c.) For dry and cracked lips, a dash of honey with the use of a cotton swab or even just a finger is enough to restore its lost moisture. It can be frequently applied throughout the day just like a regular lip balm. It can also be applied at night prior to sleeping so the honey will keep the lips moisturized while snoring the night away.
6.) Jojoba Oil:
Native Americans utilized the extract of jojoba seeds for their cooking and medicinal needs. Modern times have found jojoba to be very useful in maintaining healthy hair and skin thanks to its rich amounts of vitamins and minerals, not to mention a very long lifespan that allows it to be left on the shelf without fear of getting spoiled.
a.) The vitamin E content in jojoba oil not only accelerates the closing of wounds but also minimizes the presence of stretch marks and scars. Simply rub the oil on affected areas and let dry.
b.) After taking a shower, apply jojoba oil on the skin to moisturize it and reduce instances of dryness. Dabbing a drop on the lips with a finger also remedies dryness, same goes when applied to feet as treatment for cracked heels. Application prior to bedtime is also advised so the oil can work on moisturizing the skin overnight.
A glass of milk is both delicious and healthy when drank. The fatty acids found in milk are responsible for its skin hydrating and rejuvenating properties. Topical application is also immensely beneficial for the skin, and even the legendary Egyptian queen Cleopatra attributed her radiant skin to the use of milk. There are many ways to utilize this drink for this purpose:
a.) This may sound expensive, but a milk bath works wonders for the skin. On a tub of warm water, add up to three gallons of milk or more if so desired, as long as it does not spill. Rest on the bath for 20 minutes to give the skin time to absorb the milk, and thoroughly wash off afterwards. Do the bath several times a week for more radiant and hydrated skin. Powdered milk is an acceptable substitute for fresh milk.
b.) If the milk bath tears a new hole in the wallet, a simple cotton ball will do the trick on a smaller scale. Dab it on some milk, rub on specific areas of the skin, let it sit for at least 15 minutes, then wash off afterwards.
c.) The combination of milk (one cup) and oatmeal (three tablespoons) make a potent healing ointment. A half cup of ground almonds are an acceptable substitute for oatmeal. Apply it to the skin, leave to dry, and give a thorough rinse to wash it off.
d.) Milk contains proteins that facilitate improved wound healing when consumed. So, drink a glass of milk every day while doing the other methods mentioned above to make the most out of milk!
People tend to automatically think of cow’s milk whenever milk is mentioned. Goat’s milk is another option, and so is rice, yogurt, buttermilk, and soy. If milk is used, always choose the full fat variant as it better hydrates the skin.
A hot bowl of oatmeal is a breakfast staple that is packed with properties that lower both cholesterol and blood pressure. It is also a very soothing skin food when applied topically. Oatmeal moisturizes skin, relieves ailments like eczema, inflammation, and itchiness, and promotes a more efficient wound healing. One of the best ways to use oatmeal is through a bath. Add a few cups of oatmeal into a cheesecloth or muslin bag and place it on a tub full of warm water. The bag can be squeezed gently if more oatmeal is needed. The gentle nature of oatmeal baths allow it to be done regularly, even on a daily basis, without fear of harming the skin (unless a skin condition is present that restricts bath time). A clean sock or pantyhose can also be used to store the oats.
9.) Olive Oil:
Olive oil is hailed for having countless health benefits that span for almost 5,000 years in different ancient cultures, and research keeps unraveling more of the liquid gold’s medicinal powers. In fact, the Mediterranean cuisine that makes the most use of olive oil is attributed to be the healthiest of the world’s dishes. The oil is very easy to obtain, incredibly effective, and has a lot of ways to be utilized. Olive oil has phytonutrients that are proven to diminish the risk of certain cancers, antioxidants that fight free radicals and lower the levels of bad cholesterol and blood sugar, and maintains optimum overall health. For the skin, olive oil shields it against harmful ultraviolet rays and melanoma when either applied topically or included in meals. Rubbing it on the skin and lips ensures hydration, softening, and improved wound healing and skin cell regeneration. Cracked heels, diaper rashes, eczema and other skin disorders, and itchy skin are not safe from olive oil’s curative effects.
10.) Tips to Consider:
To avoid having dry skin, do not linger in spots with environments that cause dryness such as places with dry heat, harsh winds, high altitude, and low humidity. It is also ideal to increase dietary intake of essential fatty acids like flaxseed, olive oil, salmon, and walnuts. These foods improve skin moisture, as proven by a study done in Germany’s Institute of Experimental Dermatology.