Vicks is a tried and true age-old mentholated topical cream that is great for relieving stuffiness from cold, relieving headaches, sore throats, and more. But did you know you can use Vicks VapoRub for more than chest congestion? There are many Vicks VapoRub hacks that you can use for many conditions besides coughs and colds.

Vicks BabyRub placed on wooden table under the title '16 Must Try Vicks VapoRub Hacks'
Must-Try Vicks VapoRub Hacks

Anytime we showed one sign of a cough, runny nose, ache or pain, the Vicks came out and boy did we get lathered up. My mom or dad would layer it on my chest, behind my knees, and on my feet. When I woke up I would notice a ton of difference in how I felt.

Oh, and if you want to make your own from essential oils, check out this easy how to make homemade vapor rub instructions.

I love the age we live in, where people try new things and find new ways to use a regular everyday product like Vicks VapoRub! Enjoy these Vicks VapoRub hacks and unique ways to use up that ½ used jar sitting in your cabinet.

Vicks VapoRub Hacks and Unique Uses

A quick note first, using your fingers may cause bacteria to grow in the jar, so the best bet is to use clean cotton balls or swabs with each use. Do not redip the applicator into the jar once it touches the skin.

Must Try Vicks VapoRub hacks - 2 cotton swabs in the foreground. On their right is a small jar of Vicks BabyRub, and behind it is a large glass jar containing cotton swabs. All items are placed on a wooden table.

1. Use To Relieve A Headache

If you find yourself with a headache that won’t go away, here’s a cool hack to relieve that annoying headache. Rub a little Vicks VapoRub on your temples, and feel the release. The menthol in your Vicks jar helps relieve the pressure and offers a cooling effect.

2. Great On Paper Cuts Or Hangnail

While the manufacturer doesn’t recommend using it on broken skin, you can apply Vicks to paper cuts and hangnails. This VapoRub hack helps prevent infection and speeds up healing, through its antibacterial and antimicrobial properties.

3. Unique Cat Scratch Prevention

Cats are known for sinking their claws into things they shouldn’t. Apply a small amount of Vicks VapoRub to areas your cat won’t leave alone, and watch your cat steer clear. They don’t like the smell and won’t go near it.

4. Helpful With Potty Issues

If your pet is struggling by relieving themselves where they shouldn’t set an open jar of VapoRub in the area. The vapor will fill the room. Vicks is a really big help when it comes to potty training.

5. Surprising Effectiveness With Nail Fungus

If your toenails have some fungus, grab your Vicks VapoRub. Apply Vicks over a period of two weeks to your nail beds, and it will begin to kill the fungus. The area might turn black which means that it is killing the fungus. As your nail grows the fungus will come off. A little gross but it works.

Must Try Vicks VapoRub Hacks - Vicks BabyRub jar on wooden table

6. Use Vicks To Fade Bruises

If you have a fresh bruise and you want to speed up the healing process, try this. Mix a pinch of salt with some VapoRub and apply it to the bruise. It will help the discoloration fade faster and heal quicker. This really only works on new bruises.

7. No Vaseline? Vicks VapoRub Hydrates Dry Feet

If your feet get pretty dry, apply some Vicks on the heels and other troubled areas. Put socks on and leave them on through the night. In the morning wash the remaining VapoRub off of your feet. The Vicks helps moisturize the skin through the night. This is probably one of the better-known Vicks VapoRub hacks and for good reason. It really works!

8. Great Tennis Elbow Relief

Alongside other doctor’s recommendations for self-care, apply Vicks once to twice a day to help soothe and relieve that pain. The eucalyptus oil in the VapoRub has anti-inflammatory properties that may help to reduce the swelling.

9. Know Someone Suffering From Athletes Foot?

Advise them to apply Vicks twice a day for two weeks to help get rid of athletes’ foot. They should also keep their feet dry, especially between the toes to prevent reinfection. Eucalyptus oil and menthol contained in Vicks help fight the fungi.

10. Also Works To Remove Ticks

If you have a tick on you, apply some VapoRub onto the tick. The strong menthol smell and the suffocating petroleum will cause them to let go of your skin. Make sure you kill the tick or it will be back for more blood! It could be on you, someone else, or on pets.

11. Good Hack For Stretch Marks

Simply apply some Vicks to your stretch marks each day, and within 2-3 weeks you will begin to notice them fading. This Vaporub hack is made possible by the amazing eucalyptus oil known for its wound-healing properties.

12. Try Vicks To Take Away Ear Pain

Is your ear hurting? Apply Vicks to a cotton ball and place it in the ear. Leave it in overnight. The eucalyptus oil and menthol components have both antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties that help relieve aches and pain.

13. Helpful Beauty Hacks

When your matte lipstick won’t easily come off, apply a thin layer of Baby Vicks and let it sit for 3-5 minutes. Then wipe clean and rinse. While still on beauty, the VapoRub helps repair the skin on sore, dry, and chapped lips. You can now smile at this amazing 2-in-1 deal!

15. A Clever Mosquito Repellant

Apply a dab here and there on your skin in the summer months to repel mosquitoes. Also if you get bit by a mosquito apply it to the bite. The menthol in Vicks helps soothe and ease the itching.

16. Brilliant Remedy For Pimples

We know pimples almost always pop up when we most don’t want them to. Like when going to an important event. If one does pop up, dab a little VapoRub on the pimple, and the next morning it will be gone or have shrunk a good amount. The camphor component has the same properties as menthol by being a topical painkiller, and will also work as an effective treatment for acne and other oily skin conditions.

17. Healing Muscle Rub

We all run out of stuff once in a while. In case you’ve run out of your muscle rub cream, substitute it with Vicks. The cooling menthol is also a topical analgesic/painkiller, a component also found in your regular muscle rub cream. It helps relieve pressure on muscles by heating to cause muscle relaxation, pain relief, and offer that cooling sensation.

18. Slay The Poison Ivy Sting

Just had a nasty encounter with poison ivy? Rub Vicks VapoRub on the affected skin. This will stop the itching and diminish the redness. Over-the-counter remedies for poison ivy contain camphor, also a component in your Vicks rub. Apply some every night till the poison ivy clears up.

19. Must-Try DIY Hair Hacks

Suffering or know someone suffering from hair loss, itchy scalp, dandruff? Or you simply want to lay your edges? Grab your Vicks VapoRub for all these hair hacks. Its ingredients are known to stimulate hair growth.

  • Lavender is a surprising hair loss treatment that improves blood circulation around hair follicles.
  • Camphor definitely improves blood circulation which in turn boosts the growth of strong healthy hair.
  • The soothing eucalyptus oil works well for an itchy scalp, preventing dandruff, stimulating hair follicles, and improving hair elasticity to keep it strong.
  • And should there be an irritant in your hair, get rid of it with the menthol component to leave room for easy hair growth.

20. Treat Psoriasis At Home

While psoriasis is a well-known skin condition, there’s the lesser-known nail psoriasis. If left untreated, it will change the shape and look of your nails. Your nails may become thicker, develop pinprick holes, be tender and painful. Trim affected nails short, apply a good amount of VapoRub, leave overnight, and wash off in the morning. Repeat this on a daily basis for up to 6 weeks or until there’s visible improvement.

21. Great Sunburn Relief

Summer comes packed with heat and sunburns in almost equal measure. Keep your Vicks jar on standby to rub on affected areas for some cooling and relief from the stinging sensation. Not only does menthol give you that cool sensation, but it also improves blood circulation giving you fewer sore muscles.

22. Unique At-Home Warts Treatment

Want in on a little trick to delay or avoid a visit to the skin doctor for the painful surgical removal of warts?  Dab some VapoRub on the wart and cover it up with a bandage. The wart should fall off within 5 or so days.

23. You May Want To Try This Eczema Soothe

The camphor and eucalyptus components known for anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties help soothe skin, reduce inflammation, and clear up your skin. Simply dab a very light layer on the affected skin as the petroleum jelly may clog your pores, make things worse, and nobody really wants that.

More Hacks and Tips – These aren’t Vaporub, but are still awesome!


Must Try Vicks VapoRub hacks! In foreground are 2 cotton swabs. On their right is a small jar of Vicks BabyRub, and behind it is a large glass jar containing cotton swabs. All items are placed on a wooden table.

Do you have a favorite Vicks VapoRub hack that we haven’t mentioned? We’d love to hear about it in the comments!

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