Petroleum jelly (PJ) is a semi-solid, skin-protecting substance that helps treat dry skin or cracked lips. The chemical composition of this substance is a combination of hydrocarbons and mineral oil and wax. Technically, petroleum jelly is an obstructive moisturizer because it prevents hydrophobicity of the skin. As a matter of fact, petroleum jelly or “repairing gel”, helps to lock in moisture by creating a barrier on the surface of the skin, and prevents dehydration and dry skin. Therefore, it makes sense to use this substance to treat cracked skin, diaper rash, abrasion and other cases.
There are two popular brands of petroleum jelly that you may be familiar with. The first is Vaseline, which is composed of 100% petroleum, and the second is Aquaphor, which also contains other moisturizers. Both products are very popular and have always had lots of benefits for human skincare for decades. Of course, petroleum jelly has other uses as well.
Other names of PJ
Petroleum jellies have other names, including the following:
- White petroleum
- Soft paraffin
Benefits and applications of petroleum jelly
According to experts from the American Academy of Dermatology, most applications of petroleum jelly relate to its lubricating and coating properties. In other words, petroleum is the main active ingredient in this product, which can reduce dryness by not allowing moisture to leave the skin and lips. Although it does not moisturize the skin, it retains moisture and may work better than other skin ingredients. Research has shown that this substance has the greatest effect when rubbed on moist and clean skin. To sum up, the benefits of petroleum jelly are as following:
- Moisturizing cracks and treating dry skin
In the United States, the Food and Drug Administration has approved this jelly as an over-the-counter preservative for the skin. For this reason, you will find this substance in cosmetics, lotions, ointments and other skincare products.
- PJ is also good for reducing dry skin and improve moisture in the elbows, heels, or other places. If you use it to treat heels or elbows, rub it on your skin before going to bed and then go to bed with soft socks or gloves.
Due to the studies, PJ can also treat wounds. If you use this material when repairing, it cleans the wounds, retains moisture and potentially minimizes the scar.
- Those who deal with the symptoms of psoriasis can also use PJ as a concentrated lotion or in combination with creams prescribed for the treatment of psoriasis.
The use of this substance helps to improve the absorption of therapeutic creams, reduce itching and inflammation, and increase moisture.