Vaseline, meet your competitor. The amazing Lucas’ Papaw Ointment:
I studied in Melbourne, Australia, from 2005-2008. There were a lot of things to get used to, such as the accent and the Australian proclivity to shorten words. First day of uni, and I thought I made a gigantic mistake – I had no idea what the lecturers were saying. Then came the shortened words: Maccas for McD’s, breakkie for breakfast, barbie for BBQ, arvo for afternoon, and so on.
Those I was willing to emulate – they were kinda cute. But dudes, come on. Papaw (pronounced paw-paw) for papaya (which, to the best of my knowledge, is pronounced as paa-paa-yaa Malaysian-style, or puh-pa-ya, if you’re feeling fancy)? Imagine my confusion when girls around me were going, “Oh, you have GOT to try Lucas’ Papaw, it’s amazing for chapped lips”.
But yeah, smack me dumb, this stuff works.
To be honest, it’s kind of an amped-up Vaseline. While Vaseline is one of the brand names for pure petroleum jelly, Lucas’ Papaw adds carica papaya (or rather, 39mg/g of freshly fermented carica papaya). Don’t be fooled by the carica papaya bit – it’s the plant’s official name. Wikipedia has an interesting entry on papaya:
Papain is also applied topically in countries where it grows for the treatment of cuts, rashes, stings and burns. Papain ointment is commonly made from fermented papaya flesh, and is applied as a gel-like paste.
There are other parts about how papaya has been used as a contraceptive and abortion buuuutttt that’s for you to read and find out. We’re definitely not qualified to comment on that.
How is this different from Vaseline though? On me, I find that it’s not as gloopy, stinky, or greasy. Vaseline is great as an occlusive agent for extremely dry areas, e.g. cracked heals but it’s too much to use on the shins or all over the body. I also can’t stand that chemical plasticky smell. A lot of body moisturizers don’t work too well for me, and this was the only one that minimized the appearance of my scaly shins, with regular use.
This though is a major hero when it comes to chapped lips and super dry/sensitive facial skin. This is the only product I can use on my lips without my lips peeling the day after. Almost every lip balm I’ve used peeled my lips after, which is bloody annoying. This one doesn’t. And remember my adult acne? My skin got so raw, and I wrote in one of my earlier entries about how I slathered Lucas’ Papaw on my skin. Nothing else.
And it worked. It soothed and healed.
Yes, it is a mite expensive – a tube like this was about RM18 but it also comes in tubs. I honestly have this with me all the time and I highly recommend it for anyone who has dry lips or super dry skin. Disclaimer though – if you can’t take petroleum jelly, this is not going to be the product for you.