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Petroleum-Free Chest Rub

Petroleum-Free Chest Rub

Getting a cold is not a lot of fun but it happens to the best of us, especially this time of year. Growing up, whenever we had a cold, the Vicks VapoRub would come out before we went to bed and it always felt comforting. As a parent researching Vicks, though, I am not keen on the idea of rubbing a petroleum product on our skin (it also contains turpentine oil) any time, especially not when we’re under the weather. In this version, you get the healing qualities of the essential oils without any petroleum product, and I am hopeful this will help you get the good night’s sleep that you deserve. This will rub on like the stuff we grew up on, too. If you don’t have coconut oil, you can also use just olive oil with the essential oils for a chest rub that feels less like Vicks but works just the same. Buying essential oils is a bit of an expense, but you can use them over and over again for a chest rub that will be thrifty as well as limiting our purchasing of excess plastic packaging. 

This is made with coconut oil (room temperature, which means it’s solid and soft but not melted), mixed with a liquid oil to make it a bit more spreadable. This can go on the chest, under the nose and soles of the feet! Please check with a doctor before using, especially when pregnant or on children two and younger. The rosemary (an antiseptic that helps to open breathing passageways), peppermint (opens nasal passageways) and eucalyptus (antiseptic with antiviral and decongestant qualities) essential oils will help you to start to feel better.


Petroleum-Free Chest Rub

1/4 cup coconut oil, softened at room temperature but not melted
1 T. olive, safflower or vitamin E oil
20 drops each: Rosemary, Peppermint and Eucalyptus essential oils (lavender and tea tree are other great options)


Mix together in a small bowl until the coconut oil is softened and everything is mixed together fully. Scoop into a clean glass jar with an airtight lid - maybe a sterilized salsa jar - and store at room temperature for up to a year. (Remember that coconut oil will melt in the summer so store in the ‘fridge then.)



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