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Tiger Balm comes from Asia and has been around for a while now. It says it is suitable for ages 2 and up. It is available in places like Boots as well as Asian supermarkets and the internet. The prices vary from around £1.20 to £3.99 depending on where you buy it from. Two versions are available- white and red. I have tried both and I think the red is a bit stronger with ingredients that are more warming and heat up more. The red one contains more clove oil and more menthol but they're both pretty similar, just with different percentages of the ingredients.
Tiger balm is made with natural ingredients and is a herbal formula, it claims to be inspired by ancient Chinese wisdom. The point of this balm is to ease aches and pains when you massage it into those areas.
I really like the packaging, it's very colourful and stands out on the shelf. The jar is a small, glass jar with a gold metal lid. The label on the front has a picture of a tiger and there is plenty of information written on the box and the label.
Tiger Balm has quite a strong smell, but this isn't a bad thing. It is a very warm smell, maybe because of the clove oil that it contains. Some of the ingredients the red Tiger Balm contains are; clove oil, menthol, natural camphor, cajuput oil, mint oil and cinnamon oil. The balm is made of a paraffin wax base with the natural oils added to it. You can definitely smell the cinnamon, menthol and clove oil.
I actually really like the smell of this, it really stings your eyes though so wash your hands after using it and don't rub your eyes while it is on your hands like I have done a few too many times! It is probably the tingly ingredients like menthol that sting the eyes.
To apply this you rub your fingers in some of the wax in the pot and rub it between your hands before massaging your achy or sore muscles with it. It heats up on your skin and warms your muscles which is a nice feeling and helps to relax and soothe the aches and pains. This is only temporary, it does provide relief and helps your muscles to relax though. I like to use tiger balm when my legs or arms are starting to ache, to relax the muscles and stop them becoming stiff. For a bad back, this is nice to apply for relaxation and for some relief but it is no match for actual painkillers when it comes to proper pain.
I'm not sure if it is recommended to use on your head, but I have applied it to headaches and it really has helped me, so much that I haven't had to take paracetamol. With an actual migraine, I think it would be a different story but this might ease it and give some relief.
I would definitely recommend this to anyone who gets sore muscles and wants something to relieve them. I recommend it more for minor aches and pains rather than something more serious. Although, I like to use it as an addition to other things like painkillers when my neck is stiff and painful.
Tiger balm is a handy item to have in the house for a variety of different ailments. Its main use is as a pain relief for aches and pains such as with sore joints and bad backs. Tiger balm comes from Asia where it has been used for years as a traditional remedy.
There are two types of tiger balm and I have always bought the red one as this seems to be stronger and works better for those aches and pains that we all sometimes get.
The balm is quite hard and you just need to rub your fingers over it like you would do with a lip balm and then apply the balm to the affected areas.
As soon as you apply the balm you get a heating sensation on the skin where you have applied it. Depending on the area this heat can actually be a wee bit uncomfortable but it fades away quite quickly just leaving behind a slight warming.
The balm works great for helping with aches and pains. I use this a lot after biking on my muscles and joints to soothe them a little and stop them from getting stiff and it works to take away a lot of the discomfort.
I probably wouldn't use this if I had a really painful backache and would instead use either an ibuprofen rub or a heat rub instead but this works well for minor pains and really does help with stopping muscles and joints from becoming stiff. The pain relieving effects don't last that long probably only about 45 minutes but it is good if you get it on straight away as soon as you find that your muscles might be stiffening up a little bit.
One advantage this has over ibuprofen gel is that it can be applied as frequently as you need it as it is made from a herbal remedy.
A small pot of tiger balm costs around about £3.99 for 19g depending on where you buy it.
I have been using tiger balm ever since I met my partner who is of chinese origin. I own a tiny pot that her mum gave to me from Vietnam where it is very cheap. It helps with pain such as headaches, shoulder and back ache although I was told not to use it on larger areas such as your whole back or whole face. Also keep it away from your eyes as I once wiped my eye forgetting that I had used it and even several hours later my eye was so itchy. You can use it on your lips as well for chapped lips and although it stings a bit it does sort them out.
When using for a headache, rub a very small amount on your finger, and apply in circular motions onto both sides of your temple and massage it in. It feels almost like a cool burning before it gets warm. It will stay tingly and slightly burning for a while, but whilst this is happening you will almost forget the sensation from your headache and start focusing on this instead. I put on too much once and the burning was a little bit unbearable, but each time I have used it my headache goes away. Its a lot better for you than taking paracetamol, and its all natural ingredients. I dont particularly like the smell as it makes my nose water, and is quite strong. It smells like a menthol medicine, and something other worldy.
When using on your shoulders it feels a bit like deep heat, although you cant use it on such a big area. Its quite greasy feeling to start with but once it has sunk in after about ten minutes you cant tell it has been there apart from the smell that is left.
I would recommend this to those who dont like taking tablets, or for those with regular headaches that are worried about how much medicine they are putting into their body. Im not sure how much it costs to buy in the UK but its well worth it and works ten times better than any 16p paracetamol.
Reason for purchase
I have been unfortunate to suffer with headaches for the majority of my lifetime and whilst I would previously describe the majority as being manageable, for the past few months they have worsened and as a result, have prevented me from getting on with my day. Thankfully, a visit to both my GP and optician ruled out anything sinister with the diagnosis being tensions headaches, which are triggered by stress and it was recommended that I take painkillers as and when required. Whilst I generally find that a dispersible aspirin will shift the pain, I was taking far too many for my liking and I was eager to seek an alternate product that contained natural ingredients.
It was many years ago that I learned of Tiger Balm; a product that has been around for over a century and was created by a Chinese herbalist named Aw Chu Kin. However, as I had previously tried a couple of natural remedies for pain relief with neither assisting me, I totally dismissed Tiger Balm. It was only when I carried out further research a few days prior to my purchase that I discovered that the ointment is one of the world's best known pain relievers and is effective for an array of aches and pains. I was surprised to learn that there are so many varieties of Tiger Balm where I opted for the Red Ointment with this review discussing my experience.
I purchased a 19g jar, which is contained within a brightly coloured cardboard box displaying the familiar running tiger together with a number of eye-catching Chinese symbols. The box is hygienically sealed, so I had the assurance that nobody had tested the product prior to purchase. On removing the hexagon shaped glass jar from the outer packaging my eyes were drawn to the golden coloured circular screw top lid, which is embossed with further Chinese symbols together with the tiger. As the product was a new concept for me, I welcomed the fact that it was accompanied by an easy to read A6 double sided leaflet, which provides a considerable amount of useful information together with directions for use.
On removing the lid I was met with the most captivating aroma, which reminded me of the festive season due to the cinnamon and whilst it was prominent, it wasn't overpowering. The balm offers a reddish/brown appearance and as I gently glided the tip of one of my fingers along the surface, the aroma of cloves became evident. I had anticipated the balm to offer a consistency similar to that of Vaseline petroleum jelly, which I expected to witness on the tip of my finger.
Applying Tiger Balm
Whilst it seemed that no product had transferred onto my finger other than for a slight sheen, as directed I gently rubbed my finger onto each of my temples. After approximately sixty seconds I was able to witness a slight coolness, which I would describe as comforting; the sensation of which reminded me of Bio Freeze albeit on a far lesser scale. The coolness rapidly transformed into a delicate warming sensation, which offered further comfort in addition to assisting me to relax. The balm seemed to melt into my skin without leaving any stickiness or residue, which pleasantly surprised me, particularly as I had expected it to nestle on the surface. In addition, the aroma became more delicate and vanished after an hour or so, which I found most favourable, particularly as I did not wish to be emitting a strong cinnamon/clove scent especially when I was outside of my home.
Despite having read such positive comments, I really did not anticipate that a balm containing natural ingredients would be effective enough to shift the agonising pain in my head. However, after approximately ten minutes of application I began to witness gradual signs of relief and whether this was due to the fact that the aroma had assisted to relax me or that it was the product working its magic, I really did not know, but after around twenty five minutes of application, the pain in my head had totally vanished.
I continued to use the Tiger Balm when I experienced further headaches and again, experienced relief, which I must admit exceeded my expectations. However, I would point out that there have been a few occasions where the pain was not totally alleviated although the balm helped to provide a significant amount of relief. The balm can be used up to three times each day, but the instruction leaflet states that if symptoms persist for more than two weeks or if they worsen, medical advice should be sought.
As I suffer with lower back pain following a car accident from several years ago, I have on quite a number of occasions, applied a small amount to see whether it would assist in managing my pain. Whilst the results were not as effective as when used on my temples, the balm took the edge off my pain enabling me to obtain some comfort for a few hours. As the product is of a reddish/brown I was concerned about potential staining to my clothes, but I cannot speak of any problems although I would not recommend wearing any light coloured items when using.
Ingredients and other information
I would not normally provide a list of ingredients in my review, but I feel it appropriate in relation to Tiger Balm, so the following information has been extracted from the accompanying leaflet. 11% w/w of camphor, 10% w/w of levomenthol, 7 % w/w of cajuput oil, 5% w/w of clove oil, cinnamon oil, dementholised mint oil, yellow soft paraffin and hard paraffin.
My only concern in relation to applying the balm is that it would cause an outbreak of spots, particularly as my skin can be described as T-zone. However, I experienced no such issues neither did I suffer with the one side effect, as described in the leaflet where Tiger Balm can occasionally cause irritation, such as rashes or contact dermatitis. The product is unsuitable for children under the age of two years and excessive usage should be avoided if pregnant or breast feeding.
I cannot recommend Tiger Balm highly enough and my only regret is that I didn't make a purchase when I first learned of it. Due to the reasons discussed above, it receives a five star rating from me. Whilst a 19g jar may seem a little expensive at £3.40 with my purchase being made at Boots, only a tiny amount is needed for each application and despite repeatedly using my jar, I still have a considerable amount remaining.
I hope you found my review useful and thanks for reading.
Depending on who you talk to, tiger balm cures just about everything. It is marketed as a balm for the relief of muscular pains, but my first memory of it is using it to treat mosquito bites growing up in Brunei in the 90's.
===What is it?===
According to wikipedis Tiger Balm was originally developed in the 1870s by an herbalist, Aw Chu Kin, in Rangoon, Burma, who on his deathbed asked his sons Aw Boon Haw and Aw Boon Par to perfect the product. It is now made on a mass scale in singapore and Honk Kong. Originally it included tiger bone, but now consists of only herbal ingredients (thankfully).
Contained within the balm are methanol, camphor, Dementholised mint oil, Cajuput oil, Clove bud oil and Cassia oil contained within a paraffin and petroleum jelly base. The white and red varieties of tiger balm contain differing amounts of these ingredients and a newer Tigerbalm white HR uses eucalyptus oil instead of cajuput oil.
These ingredients form a dense balm similar in consistency to a solid lip balm. The mixture is softened using the heat in your finger and usually rubbed into an affected area.
The smell of tiger balm is very strong and overpowering. It's hard to describe but could be something like a very strong minty, cinnamon, medical smell.
I've used Tigerbalm on aches and pains (a fall from my girlfriends daughters scooter whilst showing off on the skate park resulted in use this weekend and hence writing this review) and as mentioned above on bites and stings to relieve itching an pain.
A bit of research when trying to find out what is actually in it reveals it can also treat coughs by rubbing on the chest and the back, Stomach ache by rubbing on the stomach, Nasal congestion by sniffing it, Interstitial cystitis (bladder pain)by applying just above the pubic bone.
Gerard Depardieu was even reported to have told Robert De Niro how to use Tiger Balm and water to solve an erection problem while shooting a scene for Bernardo Bertolucci's 1900
I can say from experience that it definitley relieves mosquito bites and was my parents preferred choice to stop me picking at bites on my legs when I was younger. It does sting a little when applying but is soothing within microseconds.
For aches and pains, it certainly has a warming effect which relaxes the area that aches and reduces pain. Whilst a pinkiller may be more effective the soothing effect is noticeable and I prefer it without resorting to proper drugs.
As it's pretty pungent stuff it does carry several warnings which I think are worth mentiong:
Do not use on broken or irritated skin.
Keep away from eyes and mucous membranes.
Tiger balm is for external use only.
Do not use as an inhalant.
Not suitable for children under two.
Avoid excessive use in pregnancy and lactation.
===Price and Availability===
Tiger balm tends to cost around £4.50 in most shops for a 19g pack, although i have just discovered it can be bought for £3.50 with free shipping from the web.
I've been using this since I was a child (about 25 years) and have come to love the pungent smell. It feels effective and is highly recommended for stings, bites and aches....and worth a try for some of the ailments listed above.
Although I had heard of Tiger Balm before, the first time I actually used this product was in October last year when I was in Thailand as I had been told that it could help with mosquito bights.
Tiger Balm was created in 1870 by a man named Aw Chu Kin who was a Chinese herbalist. Since then, it has continued to be used to treat a number of ailments. Tiger Balm comes in three different varieties which are Tiger Balm Red, Tiger Balm Orange and Tiger Balm White.
Tiger Balm comes in four different sizes which are 4grams, 10 grams, 19.4grams and 30 grams. Although all these sizes are available, I have personally found that the most common one found in shops is the 19.4 gram tub.
Costs vary depending on where you buy from with www.amazon.co.uk charging £4.39 for a 19.4gram tub (P&P is extra).
The packaging does vary between the different sizes but the tub I have is a 19.4 gram tub so I will describe this one. Tiger Balm comes in glass jars which are hexagonal in shape. The lid colour varies depending on which variety you buy. The lids are metal and have Tiger Balm and a picture of a Tiger embossed onto it.
The glass jars all come in cardboard boxes which are decorated with pictures of Tigers and various Chinese symbols. The box is decorated with bright red and green colours and looks very pretty.
Tiger Balm Red
This variety is a reddy brown colour. The balm itself it a little bit greasy and does leave a 'sheen' on your skin after you have applied it. This one smells very strongly of the various ingredients and you can definitely smell cinnamon and clove. Once you have applied this variety of the Tiger Balm, you and the room you are in will smell of it for a good few hours so be warned!
Tiger Balm Red is meant to be used for muscular aches and pains, as well as insect bites and to relieve headaches.
I have used this variety of mosquito bites and found it to be very effective, it certainly stopped the itching. I would like to point out that this version of Tiger Balm makes your skin tingle and almost burn (similar to the sensation of using a product like Deep Heat). Although at times burning sensation was quite strong, it wasn't unpleasant.
The only downside to this variety of Tiger Balm is that is can stain if you get it on clothing. I managed to get it all over the nice white sheets at the hotel we were staying at which I was mortified about!
Tiger Balm White
This is the strongest variety of Tiger Balm, is a creamy colour and smells more of mint than anything else. The texture of this balm is slightly different to the others; it is smoother and is slightly less greasy. Again it can be used for headaches, insect bites, cramps, sprains and stomach ache. This version can also help to reduce any swelling on the body.
I have used this version on an aching back and found it to be very effective in helping to ease the pain. Tiger Balm White makes the treated area feel tingly and cool.
Tiger Balm Orange
Tiger Balm Orange is a light orange colour and is the weakest variety. It smells of mainly cinnamon with an underlying hint of mint and smells just as strong as Tiger Balm Red. This variety is said to help with headaches, trapped wind, colds, insect bites and aching muscles. Tiger Balm Orange doesn't have the warm and tingly feeling like Tiger Balm Red, it feels cooler on the skin but you still feel the tingling sensation.
I have used this variety to help with several colds and have placed the Tiger Balm around my nose and rubbed it onto my chest. Another away of clearing your nose with this product is to scoop a little bit out and place it into a bowl of boiling water. Then cover you head with a towel and breathe it the steam. I have found this to be very effective in making me feel less bunged up.
Using Tiger Balm
To use any of these products, you simply rub a small amount of it into the affected area. As I already mentioned, Tiger Balm is quite greasy so don't expect the product to rub into your skin like a moisturiser although. When I used it on my mosquito bites, I obviously didn't want to rub the bites to hard so I only rubbed the balm into my skin quite lightly but it was still very effective in making the bites stop itching and hurting.
While we were on holiday, my boyfriend and I also had back ache after a day of scuba diving so we used the Tiger Balm Orange to give each other a back rub. It was very effective in helping our aching backs although I have to admit that our backs did feeling like they were burning for a good 40 minutes.
In summary, I would definitely recommend this product for any of the above uses and I can certainly vouch for the fact that it actually works! I love the fact that this product is made from 100% natural ingredients.
Another thing I like about this product is the fact that a little really does go a long way meaning that it lasts a very long time. Finally, Tiger Balm can be used for a number of ailments so it's always a handy product to keep in your cupboards and comes in really useful when I'm on my travels.
Firstly I will say that this product is not made from Tigers (or any other animal) and it is not a Balm for Tigers, it is however, a great product that is used to temporarily relieve aches and pains in your muscles. The balm comes in a small 19g glass pot with a gold screw top lid that is easy to use and does not leak. You can currently purchase Tiger Balm in Boots for around £4 (July 2012).
As with all medicinal products Tiger Balm comes with a few warnings, it should only be used on unbroken skin and if your skin becomes irritated you should stop using the balm and seek medical advice. It should also not be put in your eye. I would suggest being very careful when applying the balm as if it does get in your eye it will sting, you could even use rubber gloves I suppose.
The product can only be used on people over the age of 16, in addition it should be only used by pregnant or breastfeeding mothers on the advice of their doctor.
Tiger Balm contains the following natural ingredients:
* Natural Camphor 11.0%
* Menthol 10.0%
* Clove Oil 5.0%
* Cajuput Oil 7.0%
* Cinnamon Oil
* Dementholised Mint Oil
* Yellow Soft Paraffin
* Hard Paraffin.
My husband and I both use Tiger Balm on our aches and pains, my husband usually uses it his neck, as he pulled a muscle in it years ago and it can flare up every now and again. I tend to use it on my back, from a muscle ache I developed after carrying by son around when he was a baby. To use it you take a small amount about the size of a pea and rub it into the affected muscle, this helps to soothe the ache and relive tension therefore taking away some of the discomfort, also as the Tiger Balm does not contain any pain killers, you can also use paracetamol and/or ibruprofen as the same time to really help yourself recover quickly.
The Tiger Balm is red in colour, it is thicker than vaseline, but softer than candle wax it melts at skin temperature and rubs easily into your skin. The balm, smells very strongly of Camphor and cinnamon which is warming on the skin and helps to promote healing. I find the balm very effective in relieving my aches and pains and would recommend it to others, especially as you can use it as and when needed and that it is natural product. The only down side to the balm is that it lingers on the skin and it is difficult to wash off, as the balm is very strong smelling even after you have washed your hands you can still smell it and I would advise thoroughly washing your hand and making sure none of the balm gets under your nails as this can then be transferred into your eye if you are not careful.
Overall I would recommend this product to others, as it is natural, effective and well priced, the pot is easy to carry around with you and also a little goes a long way so it will last for ages.
Review will also appear on Ciao! under the same user name.
It might sound strange talking about aches and pains around this time of year, but it's better to be prepared for everything the weather and the seasonal exertions throw at you. So many people don't realize how much extra work they are taking on and that's before the day itself. There's extra shopping, walking around town centers, tidying the house and in some cases even getting the decorations from the attic can cause back pain to name just one problem. Of course you might be like me and foolishly decide to do some large household changes and they take a lot out of you. I'm having my kitchen redone and it's been going on since late October. Now I'm getting the guttering done before Xmas and in preparation for any unexpected weather problems.
I'll be looking at several health remedies this month and I've started with Tiger balm because it's the only thing that eases my aching joints and helps me sleep as well. I've already got aches and pains from arthritis and yesterday I could hardly stand upright with my left hip going into spasms. I'd taken my maximum prescribed tablets of eight co-codamol and I still couldn't sleep. Then I remembered I had a pot of tiger balm and spent ages finding it. The relief was worth it though.
What is it?
Tiger Balm is a Chinese remedy for all kinds of things. One of its main ingredients is camphor so this can be used for a stuffed up head cold as well as a rub for joint pain. I first bought mine from a tiny shop in a seaside town after I'd pulled a muscle and could hardly walk. I hadn't come across it before then but there wasn't a chemist nearby and the shop sold all kinds of things. This was back in 1985 so you can see how long ago it was. I think the owner stocked just about anything and this pot was unlike the ones you can buy today, it was the strongest one, the wild tiger balm.
Modern equivalents are not quite as strong so I've put this under the red tiger balm category since you can buy this in most chemists. It's an ointment free from animal fats, which probably sounds peculiar with the name, but the tiger symbolizes strength. Since this is rubbed into the affected area I'm going to list the ingredients since some can cause irritation.
The white and red are much the same, with one slight addition in the red that I find slightly more effective so I'll list this.
Camphor BP 11%
Menthol BP 10%
Cajuput Oil BPC 7%
Clove oil BP 5%
These ingredients are in a base which consists of Cinnamon oil (in the red), Dementholised mint oil, yellow soft paraffin and hard paraffin.
It's manufactured in Singapore and sold under license by an English company.
What does it do?
When rubbed into an aching joint or muscle it warms the skin area, which helps to promote healing. The active ingredients both soothe and help the pain, though the initial feeling is one of intense heat. This soon dies back leaving a cooling sensation that really does ease the pain. If it doesn't feel hot then you haven't used enough. A little does go a long way so use about the size of a ten pence piece and rub into and around the affected area. It really does help and the added smell, though very pungent, helps relaxation and easy breathing.
Where can you buy it?
Ideally in any large Boots store though you can buy it in bulk on Amazon and other online shops. It cost about £4.50 but lasts for ages so it's well worth the price. I've seen this in the Pound store but the jar is very flimsy and the ratio of the ingredients is not as strong, so I stick to my glass jar with its unique octagonal top. Although it doesn't state how long you can keep it for I've had my current jar for about three years and it still smells strong. I've tried other rubs when I've been in tears with the pain and thought a medicated gel rub would be better, but I always return to this.
Whether it's because I believe in the product or the rub suits me it works well and the only side effect I've had is a slight stain on my sheets and that washes out. There are times it can't be used and these are on the enclosed leaflet. These are sensible precautions but I will mention them. -
Do not use on broken or irritated skin.
Keep away from eyes and mucous membranes.
Tiger balm is for external use only.
Do not use as an inhalant.
Not suitable for children under two.
Avoid excessive use in pregnancy and lactation.
I've been using this for thirty years without any harm and although it's not intended as an alternative to medication it really does help at the site of the pain and that for me is where it really counts.
Thanks for reading and stay healthy.
Ouch - well if you have read my review recently posted on the white tiger balm my back is still sore! I have just bought this today as it's supposed to be extra strong. It is the same price as the white balm - widely available for around £3.99.
The packaging is very unique and pretty and the only difference really (externally) is the red background. So i took it out of the packet when i got back to the car and instantly loved the smell, it is much more cinnamon based than the white balm and smells sweeter, not quite as strong as the menthol.
When you apply the white balm you get, within a few minutes a warming sensation, with this however there was no relief. There was just nothing. I don't think that its not working, you just don't get that same sensation. I found it was this that helped take my mind off the pain - for a while!
Love the smell but where's the warming feeling.
I have been using Tiger Balm since my childhood. There has always been a tub of tiger balm in the house! When I was younger, Tiger Balm was not available in the United Kingdom and my aunt who migrated to Singapore used to send this over by post for my mum! Tiger balm has been manufactured by Haw Par Healthcare in Singapore but has available in the United Kingdom for quite a few years now. There is a red version and a white version. The red balm is more strong compared to the white balm. I prefer the white balm as it is milder and as I have sensitive skin. There is also an oil version of tiger balm which is just as effective.
What can Tiger Balm be used for?
Tiger balm can be used for muscular aches,insect bites, itching and headaches. To use tiger balm, you just have to apply it to the affected parts. I get skin allergies all the time and I often apply tiger balm to the areas of itching. The balm is easily aborbed by the skin and leaves minimal residue. However, I have noticed that the red version tends to give a rouge effect and that another reason why I prefer the white balm.
Tiger balm contains 8% menthol, 25% camphor, 16% dementholised mint oil, cajuput oil 13%, clove oil 1.5%. It definately is an awesome combination of ingredients!
Tiger balm is available from Boots for £4.59 for 19 grams. One tub usually lasts me about 6 months. You really should try out tiger balm, if you have not used it before.
I hope you enjoyed reading my review. I will also be posting this review on other websites such as Ciao under my same username Angela150.
My Girlfriend has recently been diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis and has suffered from serious pain in her joints. Due to the medication she is taking she is unable to use many of the traditional products for joint and muscle pain such as Deep heat and the cold sports type sprays as many of these products contain ibuprophen which would interfere with her treatment. We spoke to a local pharmacist and he recommended trying Tiger Balm which to be honest we had never heard of.
There are two types of tiger balm, white and red. The white one is the milder version and smells quite menthol, the red is the extra strength one which smells of cinnamon. Be warned both versions of tiger balm smell very strong and so it's not the sort of thing you would slap on before going out because you will stink. The best bet is to put it on before you go to bed or while you are relaxing at home with your feet up.
As many of the other reviews have already stated, this product was developed for a Chinese Emperor in the 1870's and originally contained tiger bone which is where it gets its name from. Today this is a totally natural product and contains NO ANIMAL PARTS.
The main ingredients are natural camphor, menthol, clove oil, cajuput oil, cinnamon oil, dementholised mint oil, yellow soft paraffin and hard paraffin.
You can buy this is various sized pots the standard is 19g which costs around £4 and is available in chemists, boots, supermarkets and even pound shops sometimes stock this. There is also a bigger 30g pot which works out better value for money. Check out Amazon and eBay for people selling in bulk.
When rubbed into the joints this feels nice and warm and works its way in to relieve the pain. I've not tried this myself but my girlfriend said that it is extremely effective and really does help. I did some internet research and this seems to be highly recommended from may people who suffer from arthritis.
There are many uses for tiger balm other than joints and muscle pain relief. The product can be used to relieve headaches (rub into temple) help with colds (spread under nose and on chest) and can even help with bites and stings.
This is a fantastic little product which is so versatile and should be in everyone's medical draw.
I am cursed with a strange weakness in my back. I say strange because I can happily lift heavy loads and carry heavy shopping with no problems at all but I can create severe back pain by just standing up from a chair!
Anyway my latest escapade was a couple of weeks ago when I stood up from the toilet of all things and felt the familiar snapping sensation in my back. As it was the middle of the night I went back to bed and hoped it would ease a bit by morning. Sadly this was not to be and my next visit took me an hour and a half from bedroom to bathroom and back and the rooms are next to one another - such was the level of pain that I was experiencing.
The next day hubby took me to the local hospital to be checked as it was the most pain I had ever experienced and to be honest I was a bit scared. The doctor said I had torn a ligament and to take painkillers and she also prescribed some Diazepam to help me relax and stop the spasms. I was told to do gentle stretching exercises and not to rest too much as this wouldn't help in the long run.
I wore heat pads on my back for a few days as it began to ease slowly and continued with painkillers but I wondered if there was anything else that might help. I remembered that I had a tube of muscle rub in the First Aid basket so I took a look and instead I found a pot of Tiger Balm which had never been opened.
I had read some really good reviews about this stuff on Dooyoo so I thought I would give it a go.
The History of Tiger Balm
Well don't worry it doesn't contain any animal products so no tigers are hurt in the production of the product!
It was actually developed by Chinese herbalists to be used as an analgesic rub for various aches and pains and the formula which eventually became known as Tiger Balm was down to one man Aw Chu Kin who discovered that blending camphor, clove and menthol brought great relief to his patients. His sons then took over the marketing of the product calling it Tiger Balm.
Today it is one the world's leading topical analgesics for the relief of muscular aches and pains. The formula now contains camphor, clove oil, cajuput oil and menthol.
It comes in two varieties - White Tiger Balm is scented with mint oil and Red Tiger Balm is scented with cinnamon oil.
Cost and Availability
The Tiger Balm comes in a little glass pot containing 19g of balm and the pot is in a smart cardboard box with Chinese symbols on it.
The current cost in Boots is £4.59 for the White Tiger Balm and £4.99 for the Red Tiger Balm - don't ask - I have no idea why one is more expensive than the other! Maybe cinnamon oil is more expensive than mint oil.
The Look of the Balm
The little box has a picture of a tiger on the top inside a ring with the words 'Tiger Balm Singapore' around it. On my box there is a red flash across the front with the words 'Tiger Balm Red' written on it.
There are little pictures of tigers around the box and a list of ingredients on the back which apart from the four already mentioned include soft and hard paraffin and the cinnamon oil.
Inside the box there is a pretty little hexagonal glass pot with a gold coloured screw top. There is also a list of instructions for use.
Around the pot is a label which looks pretty much the same as the design on the outside of the box. The gold lid has a tiger in the middle of it and the words 'Tiger Balm', 'Tiger' and various Chinese symbols all in relief.
When you unscrew the lid from the jar the first thing that you notice is the smell in the case of mine (the red one) a smell of cinnamon mixed with that embrocation sort of smell that I always associate with sports players! It is hardly Chanel but I don't find it unpleasant at all.
The cream itself is a sort of orangey brown colour and is very thick and sticky. Although there doesn't look very much in the pot a little does go a long way so it will last for a while.
I dipped my finger into the pot but found it quite difficult to get the thick cream out until I realised that I should use my finger with a really short nail so that I could push my finger into the cream without getting it all stuck under my fingernail.
I got a small amount onto the end of my finger and rubbed it onto my aching back. It rubbed in easily and felt comfortable enough although obviously it does feel a bit greasy. Then - nothing happened - at least not for a minute or two - and then it began to tingle. The tingling got stronger and stronger but not quite to the point of being painful and then changed into a warming feeling. This relaxes the muscles and helps with the pain management.
I was very surprised at the effect that it had on my pain. The first time that I used it was last thing at night after a particularly painful day and I would normally have expected to be extremely stiff and painful the following morning, but I was surprised to find that my back felt much easier and far less painful than I had expected.
I then began to use the Tiger Balm three times a day and it made a real difference to the pain. I knew that I had to do gentle exercise to help with my recovery but when the pain is so bad it is difficult to do anything. I found that the Tiger Balm reduced the pain enough for me to be able to do that gentle exercise and thus it not only helped with the pain management it also helped with the actual recovery.
You bet your life there are! The main warming is that, when you have finished applying the cream, wash your hands immediately! If you have any residue on your fingers and you rub your eyes it will hurt like hell! This will also happen if you touch any other sensitive part of your body and I will leave it to your imagination as to where that might be.
It is not a good idea to use this product on broken or irritated skin probably for the same reason as above.
The age range is a bit of an odd one - on one hand it is only suitable for adults but on the other it should not be used on children under two years old! To be honest because of the tingling sensation when applied I wouldn't use it on children at all.
You are advised against excessive use if you are pregnant or breast feeding. Obviously, as with all medicines, it must be kept out of reach of children.
The only other possible problem is the fact that it may stain your clothing but it will wash out. I just have to be very careful crossing the road whilst I am using this as I don't want to be rushed off to hospital. Think about it - it is the base of my back that hurts, the cream is brown and the stain will be on my knickers! I think incorrect assumptions may be made! LOL!
I would recommend this without any hesitation at all. It has really helped me and I will definitely be reaching for this as my first port of call next time I have any muscular aches and pains.
At £4.99 for a pot which will last for a while it is excellent value for money.
A few years ago, a friend recommended I try Tiger Balm. I will admit I had no idea what it actually was or what it really did, but my friend told me it was good for when you had a cold, among other things. I managed to get it in the pound store, and thought that if it turned out to be no good, I had only spent a pound on it.
The first thing you will probably notice about Tiger Balm is the strong smell. I quite like the smell, and it does smell similiar to a vapour rub. The actual Tiger Balm itself is a thick, wax like substance, which you just scoop or wipe a small amount out of the tub with your finger.
I first actually tried Tiger Balm for a headache. I rubbed a small amount on my temples and after a short while it actually eased the pain. It is not something that took the pain out completley, but it does work at relaxing the muscles so helps to ease the pain and quite quickly. I also found it to be an amazing product for when I have cold. It helps to ease the headache, but also is great at helping you to breathe better. I use it as a vapour rub on my back and chest to relax a cough and tight chest, and I find it the best product ever for sinus pain.
I rub a small amount of this onto my nose and just next to my nose, and I find it relaxes the sinus, and helps to clear the airways in my nose so I can breathe again. If you do this, be careful as this stuff really does burn when you get it into you eyes. Trust me I have done it enought times to know the pain! It is a very good idea to throughly wash your hands when you have used Tiger Balm, as my boyfriend found out the hard way when he went to the toilet!! That burn lasts for ages too it would seem lol.
I have a friend who rubs this onto her tummy when she gets period cramps, as she finds it really relaxes the muscles and eases the cramps. I have not tried this myself yet, for some reason I never remember I have it when I get cramps!
You can buy Tiger Balm in quite a lot of places these days, including Pound Stores, Some Pharmacies, Amazon, Chinese Herbal Stores and many online health sellers. Prices vary immensley, from £1 to £7 for a 19g pot. I have tried ones of all different prices, and they all do exactly the same job, so the cheaper you can get it for the better in my opinion.
If you can deal with the strong smell, and remember not to get this in your eyes (or anywhere else!!) then this is a great product that I thoroughly recommend.
I really feel for those people who suffer from chronic back pain as I only suffer from it occasionally and that is bad enough. My back pain mainly comes on from sitting at my desk for too long and when it happens my back becomes sore and stiff and whilst it doesn't cause me enough pain to not be able to function it is bad enough to cause it to be uncomfortable and really does interfere with my ability to do my work properly as I am too busy thinking about the pain.
Heat pads are a fantastic product and I absolutely love them but I don't really find them practical to carry around with me on the off chance I get any sort of muscle ache at work or when out and about so for this reason I usually have some tiger balm on me.
I first came across tiger balm a couple of years ago when a friend gave me a tub when I was complaining of a sore neck and since that day it has been one of my all-time favourite products.
Tiger balm is a herbal salve that is used for the relief of aches and pains and has been used in Asia for the last 100 years and even though I had never heard of it until a couple of years ago it is also now incredibly popular in the west.
The ingredients may not mean a lot to most people but it is a combination of camphor, cajuput, clove and menthol that are blended into a solid petroleum and paraffin base to be rubbed externally on the affected areas to bring relief.
There are actually two different versions around which are white and red. The white contains more mint and is slightly more soothing and the red is a little more intense at least in my experience of using it.
Tiger balm comes in a little jar that contains 19g of balm and all you have to do is rub it into the affected areas 2 or 3 times a day. The jar may be small but don't let that put you off as this is a powerful product and a little really does go a long way.
It is a little greasy because of the petroleum and paraffin and if you use the red version then you need to be careful with light clothing as it will stain them.
When you first apply the balm to the skin it tingles and you will start to feel a sensation of the skin heating up which when you first use it can be a little disconcerting as it can actually feel like it is burning but you soon get used to this.
The ingredients are powerful analgesics so it really will help with the pain and not just sooth it like heat rubs and this pain relief actually comes on quite quickly.
I use tiger balm as a cure all product and really think it is fabulous. I keep a jar in my desk drawer and take it out when my back or neck is getting a little sore from being at the computer all day and have even converted my work mates to it who are always asking to borrow it.
Along with general aches and pains I also occasionally use it on my chest if I feel a bit blocked as it acts in a similar manner to vicks vabo rub and it can also help with headaches. I don't like putting it on my facial skin as it is a bit potent for that area in my opinion but a little on the back of the neck does help with tension headaches.
I imagine this would be a great product for people who suffer from arthritis and chronic muscle pain because it can be used in conjunction with traditional pain killers.
Because it contains such powerful active ingredients the smell is rather potent and there is no disguising the fact you are wearing it. The smell isn't so much bad as it is strong and after 20 minutes or so when the smell has faded a little the smell isn't actually all that bad and I find it quite pleasant.
People using tiger balm need to be really careful when using it that they wash their hands after use as getting any of it in your eyes or your private regions will be absolute agony and as it absorbs so quickly rushing to wash it off your privates won't save you from the pain.
Once you get used to the strong smell and strange sensation it has on the skin you will wonder why you had never used tiger balm before. Personally I think tiger balm is so good that doctors should consider prescribing it rather than handing out pills to people as I personally think it is more effective in relieving aches and pains than pain killers.
So how much is this wonder product? Well it depends where you buy it but you can expect to pay around £4.50 for a jar on the high street which for a product this effective and long lasting seems like a bit of a bargain.
Oh the Pain
We all suffer with aches and pains from time to time which cause discomfort; there are of course plenty of over-the-counter medications which can be taken to relieve mild to moderate pain, as well as many well known brands of topical medications that can be applied to the skin to give us a helping hand. Personally, I try to limit the use of medication where possible, and I generally try to ride out the pain, however, there are times when I need comfort. I have tried conventional branded heat rubs which leave the skin worryingly red and swollen in appearance after applying, which I have not gone back to.
I had avoided heat rubs as I didn't like the reaction or feeling they gave, and they never seemed to work all that well. However, my partner had been complaining of back ache, so I decided to see what was on offer to help ease the pain. Looking at the heat rubs and pain relieving ointments on offer my eyes were drawn to a small box that was on the bottom shelf. After reading the information on the box and seeing that it was a natural product I decided to give it a go.
>> What is Tiger Balm?
Tiger balm is an ancient Chinese remedy that was formulated almost 100 years ago and it is used by millions worldwide.
Tiger balm red is a topical ointment that is formulated and produced from natural herbal ingredients and essential oils; the prominent active ingredients consist of camphor, cajuput oil, menthol, mint oil, and clove oil which are blended and mixed into a petroleum jelly and paraffin base. No nasty chemicals or animal ingredients are present here and it is not tested on animals, so it is kind to the skin and to the environment too.
>> Is there a Tiger in the box?
The Tiger Balm is packaged in a beautiful oriental box that is decorated with Chinese symbols and an image of a tiger. The small glass jar within is attractive with its metal screw cap, an embossed tiger is depicted on the metal lid; the overall look of the jar is very eye-catching. The jar can easily be slipped into a pocket or bag to use whilst out and about if needed, and it is also ideal for taking on holidays, for a rescue remedy for many ailments. With this being a versatile healing remedy it should reduce the amount of pain relieving medication needed, which can only be a good thing.
>> Tiger Balm Uses and Application
Tiger Balm is a versatile pain relieving remedy that can give temporary relief and comfort to help heal and aid a multitude of ailments from, muscular aches and pains, rheumatic or arthritic pains, back and neck pain, muscle strain, sprains, stomach cramps, insect bites, and general aches and pains, it is a good all round pain reliever that provides symptomatic relief for treating pain and discomfort. It can also be used to warm up the muscles prior to exercise. The herbal heat rub can be applied to the affected area 2-3 times a day by gently massaging it into the skin. All of the important information is supplied on a leaflet within the box. It is for external use only, and it should not be applied to broken skin or wounds, and of course it should be kept away from eyes, so it is advisable to wash it off your hands thoroughly after application. It is not suitable for children under 2 years of age.
>> Where's the pain? Let me Rub it Better
As I mentioned before, I actually bought this herbal remedy as my partner was in agony with back ache at the time. I was perusing the shelves in the pharmacy when I happened to notice an interesting little oriental looking box on the bottom shelf that caught my attention, on closer inspection I was happy to learn that it was a natural remedy which is always favourable with me, I looked no further and purchased the little box of magic and hurried home with it. How glad I am, as it has been invaluable to me.
Once I got home I waved the box at my partner telling him to get his top off. Opening the jar I was immediately met with a strong pungent herbal cinnamon scent. My partner complained that it stunk. You can see he appreciated my effort. The balm is quite dense, however, it is easy to scoop out and apply; I opted to use a disposable glove to apply the ointment, as it has quite a powerful red/brown colour and a strong scent to it. Gently massaging it into the affected area it smoothes over the skin with ease and only a small amount is needed, as it melts once it meets the warm skin. It does leave an orangey-brown tinge behind on the skin and the scent is apparent, although it does fade, but it is still evident if you are in close proximity. Once it has been applied to the skin, it burns, it does actually feel a little bit unpleasant for the first 30 seconds, but after the initial shock it does calm down and it feels pleasant, as it provides a warming sensation that aids in relieving any aches or pains. Yes, my partner did whinge about it heating up too. Although after a short time he stopped complaining, so I can only assume that the balm was working its magic.
>> I Need Some Magic Too!
Having given birth to two children, I do occasionally suffer with back ache in the small of my back. I also suffer terribly with aches pains and cramps during my menstrual cycle, and whilst I'm complaining, I also have weak knees due to injuring them from being run over and I have also damaged them in few accidents since. So these are the main areas that need a bit of care and comfort from time to time.
* Menstrual cramps
I have always suffered with crippling menstrual cramps, which leave me in agony and clutching a hot water bottle for days, which causes the skin to become red and irritated. The other problem is a hot water bottle needs to be constantly refilled with hot water to be of any use, plus they are not the safest product, and they are not very practical. The pain is bad enough for me to swallow copious amounts of pills which I detest relying on.
I decided to try Tiger Balm to relieve the cramps, in hope that it would be effective. I gently massaged the topical ointment into the affected areas and I immediately noticed the intense warming sensation - wow - a little warmer than I expected. However, the intense burning sensation gave instant relief, as it warmed the area and provided a distraction from the pain. After the first thirty seconds, the burning sensation calmed and turned into a reassuring warming sensation which provided comforting relief. The balm continued to provide relief for several hours soothing and relaxing the area, it took the edge off the pain allowing me to continue with my day. I was pleasantly surprised at how well it worked and I didn't need to take any pills in conjunction with the balm as it provided enough relief. Result. The balm not only provides a pleasant warming sensation, it also emits a lovely cinnamon aroma which is comforting.
* General aches and pains
It also provides effective natural relief from back ache, and I have also used it when I have had pain in my shoulder, and it has proven to be just as effective. There have been many times that I have reached for the Tiger Balm whenever pain strikes; it has been a healing helping hand to comfort me. It heats up the skin and continues to warm the area which helps to soothe and relax the pain. I find that I only ever need to apply it twice a day when needed. It is easy to apply, however, it doesn't completely absorb into the skin, and it leaves an orangey/brown tinge which may stain clothing.
I do find that it penetrates through my clothes as they are fitted, and it transfers onto my hands, so I usually wear another layer of clothing over the top to avoid it coming into contact with everything. You could wrap a bandage around the affected area after applying the ointment to stop if from seeping through clothes to prevent it from staining clothing; however, I have never tried this, as I am generally wearing casual clothes when I'm at home so I'm not too fussed about them staining. The ointment does rub off onto clothes; however, it has washed out on a 40C wash without any problems. It also washes off the skin with warm soapy water with ease, and it doesn't leave the skin looking red or irritated at all.
>> Let the Tiger take the Pain Away
I have had this little jar of magic ointment for quite some time now, I always have it to hand for any aches and pains. It is the first thing I reach for when I'm feeling unwell, or when either my partner or I are suffering with any aches or pains. The warming sensation and lovely cinnamon aroma that emits leaves me feeling much better in no time, the pain eases off leaving me feeling relaxed, which enables me to carry on with my daily tasks.
Tiger Balm saves me from relying on medication to help ease the pain, and other medical aids to get through painful days. It saves me money as well as not needing to use nasty medication and chemical based products, as this can be used for various ailments to provide comfort and effective natural relief. This really is a little pot of magic, as far as I'm concerned. The balm lasts for a long time, as only a small amount is needed, so it is excellent value for money.
Who needs pills and hot water bottles when you have a magical pot of Tiger Balm? The only pain relief you will ever need.
>> Where can you get your own Tiger from?
Tiger Balm is available in two versions which are, white (which is a weaker formula that gives off a cooling sensation,) red, or red strong (which gives off a warming sensation). It is available in different formats, and there are now several ointments, sprays and creams available to suit different needs.
Tiger Balm may be found in Pharmacies, some supermarkets may stock it, and it can be purchased on-line from places such as, Amazon.
RRP: £4.79 (19 grams)
Supplied in either: 4gm tins or 19gm jars
For the relief of muscular pains. Contains no animal products & is not tested on animals