Tiger Balm is a home-remedy ointment most commonly used to combat muscle and joint pain, though there are many other uses also as you will learn in this article.
There are two different types of Tiger Balm. White Tiger Balm and red Tiger Balm.
Tiger Balm Red is the stronger of the two and is good for muscle and joint pains. Tiger Balm White is also good for muscle and joint pains but does not penetrate as deep as red.
Personally I like the red Tiger Balm, but if you have sensitive skin, you may prefer white.
The main active ingredient in Tiger Balm (for both types) is menthol. The difference is that the ingredients of Tiger Balm White includes methyl salicylate while Tiger Balm Red has camphor.
Top 10 Uses for Tiger Balm Video
Here’s an abridged version of this post in video format for those of you that prefer to watch than read. The complete article continues below the video.
How to Use Tiger Balm
When you buy Tiger Balm, there are instructions included on its safe use. Follow them and the Tiger Balm warnings.
The main thing is that once you have handled the Tiger Balm take care not to touch sensitive areas such as your groin, armpits, and eyes.
Only use Tiger Balm on your skin. It is NOT for internal use.
There is no conclusive research on the effects of using Tiger Balm during pregnancy. It’s probably best to avoid it.
Tiger Balm Side Effects
Experiencing major side effects of Tiger Balm is unlikely, but you never know. If you have never used Tiger Balm before, test it on a small patch of skin first.
Put a little on the inside of your forearm and leave it to see the effects.
It will heat up. That is what it does.
If it itches, you experience redness, itchiness, or the burning sensation is too much for you then you may have a sensitive reaction. If you are using Tiger Balm Red then you can try Tiger Balm White instead.
How to Get Tiger Balm Off
Tiger Balm is a sticky ointment and once applied it is a little difficult to remove. The best thing to do is rinse the body part under cool water.
This will also soothe the area as it washes away or wears off.
I know what your next question is…
How Long Does Tiger Balm Last?
From experience I can say that the more you apply the longer it lasts. Also, it depends on the sensitivity of the person and the body part.
Personally, once I apply it to a major muscle group (e.g., my neck) it takes about 10 minutes to work its magic. The heat sensation lasts about 30 minutes and the soothing effect continues for longer.
If it is for muscle pain (which is the reason I use it most) then I reapply once every several hours.
Red Tiger Balm is a more intense heat and may last longer the White Tiger Balm.
FYI: Shelf life of Tiger Balm is about four years. You can still use it but it may not be as effective.
Now that you know the answers the questions what is Tiger Balm and what is Tiger Balm used for we can get into the main subject of this article.
10 Ways I Use Tiger Balm
1. Tiger Balm for Motion Sickness
I’m an avid traveler who gets motion sickness. I would rather not use antihistamines and I’ve tried most other natural remedies.
The one I find works the best for me is smelling Tiger Balm. Just open the container and take a few good whiffs.
You could also dab a little on your temples.
2. Tiger Balm for Headaches
Apart from dehydration headaches (where I would just drink water and rest) my go to remedy for a headache is to dab a bit of Tiger Balm on my temples and then take a rest.
I don’t get migraines but I have met people that claim this method is gives some relief. Worth a try if you get them.
3. Bad Stomach Cure
As I get older, I have found my tolerance for eating “exotic” foods while traveling has gone down, but I just can’t resist so I suffer the consequences.
Whether you have the runs, gas, constipation, or a general stomach ache, you can rub some Tiger Balm on it and let the heat do its magic.
I was skeptical on this when I first tried it, but it works well for me.
4. Tiger Balm for Chest Congestion
Whether you have a blocked nose, allergies, or other congestion, rubbing some Tiger Balm on your chest (like vapor rub) can help to open your sinuses.
5. Get Rid of Corns
If you’ve got corns on your feet a bit of Tiger Balm may help.
I can’t attest to this one since I’ve never tried it, but I’ve heard positive reports from others.
6. Cure a Sore Throat
This works best when you catch it early.
Put some Tiger Balm on your neck when you feel a sore throat coming on and do it again before sleeping that night.
7. Tiger Balm for Bug Bites
This is the thing I use Tiger Balm for most often, mosquito bites.
But it works for many other bug bites also.
It also helps to keep the bugs away. Nothing better than prevention.
8. Tiger Balm for Pain
Using Tiger Balm as a muscle rub for training injuries is probably the most common use for it. It is just like “Deep Heat”.
To use Tiger Balm for muscle strain, massage a good amount of it directly to sore muscles and bones.
I’m not there yet but I imagine a Tiger Balm arthritis rub would give some relief as well.
9. Prevent Odors
The Tiger Balm smell is strong so you can use it to overpower most other unpleasant scents.
A good example would be to leave an open container in your shoes.
10. Remove Ink
If you have ink or paint stains on your skin cover them in Tiger Balm and wait a few minutes. You will pull them off easily.
This also works with sticker residue.
Where to Buy Tiger Balm
Finding who sells Tiger Balm is easy in most countries. Try your local pharmacy (drug store) or supermarket.
And in countries where you really can’t find Tiger Balm you can order it online or often there is a local alternative.
DIY Tiger Balm
You can create your own homemade Tiger Balm.
I looked at a few different recipes and Homemade Tiger Balm ingredients include a bunch of essential oils mixed with a carrier oil and held together with Beeswax.
The advantages of making your own is that you can make it more or less potent. Also, it won’t have paraffin petroleum in it.
Here’s an instructional video for a good basic Tiger Balm recipe.
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Using Tiger Balm Conclusion
As you can see, I’m a big fan of Tiger Balm. It is versatile and the ingredients in Tiger Balm are natural.
I hope you got some use from my 10 favorite ways to use Tiger Balm liniment.
You now also know where to get Tiger Balm, and if you want you even know how to make Tiger Balm.
There are plenty of other uses for Tiger Balm than the ones listed here. But these are what I use it for. Feel free to add how you use Tiger Balm ointment in the comments.
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