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Estimated reading time: 7 minutes
Vaseline is an American brand of products made from petroleum jelly. Petroleum jelly has its roots as a by-product of the oil refining industry in the 1800s. This unique, jelly-like substance has many uses and a long shelf-life, making it well-suited for homesteading and survival situations.
Vaseline makers suggest a ‘best if used by’ date of around three years for a new container of Vaseline. However, anecdotal evidence shows people may be using their jars for as long as 5 to 10 years. Given its long shelf-life, you may want to stock up on Vaseline so you have it on hand for its many homesteading and survival uses.
Keep reading to learn about the many survival uses for Vaseline.
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1. Lip Balm
Vaseline is probably best known for its use as a lip balm. It softens and protects chapped lips, a must when you’re working outside in the sun and the cold or wind.
You can soften and smooth dry skin with Vaseline, as well. Smooth it onto rough feet and dried-out hands, and then cover them with a cotton sock or gloves. Leave it on overnight to refresh skin that’s become dried out and tough from working outside.
3. Skin Protector
Suppose you’re doing your own hair in a survival situation. In that case, you might consider applying a stripe of Vaseline around your hairline to prevent hair dye or other products from staining the skin.
4. Diaper Cream
You may not have access to the store if SHTF. Stock up on Vaseline so you can use it in place of diaper cream to protect your little one’s sensitive skin from moisture.
5. Emergency Candle
If you need a candle in a pinch, you can make one with petroleum jelly and a cotton ball. Just place a dollop of Vaseline in a tin can or other fire-safe container. Put a little Vaseline on a cotton ball, and then light it. Remember that petroleum jelly is very flammable, so always be careful with it.
6. Leather Conditioner
Rub your leather shoes and belts with a dollop of Vaseline to clean them up and give them a nice shine.
7. Stain Remover
Apply a small amount of Vaseline to your stain with a damp cloth and let it set. Carefully blot the stain away and repeat as needed until the stain is gone. Use dish soap to remove the Vaseline so that it does not leave an oily residue on your item. Vaseline can be used to remove stains such as gum, crayon, makeup, and candle wax.
8. Protect Fruit Trees
Aphids and scale can decimate your fruit trees. Ants protect these pests. Smear an inch wide band around the tree’s base to prevent ants from climbing the tree and protecting the aphids. Preventing the ants from helping the aphids will reduce the aphid and scale population before it ruins your harvest.
9. Bug Trap
Flying insects can be a real pain inside your house. To trap them, smear a bright yellow piece of cardboard or plastic with a thick coating of Vaseline and hang it where you see the pest activity. The pests will be attracted to the yellow color and get stuck in the Vaseline.
If your small pets are climbing out of their terrarium, you might try coating the upper parts of the walls with Vaseline to keep your little critters from being able to crawl out.
11. Remove A Ring
If your hand swells and your ring becomes stuck, you might be able to remove it by covering your finger with Vaseline and carefully working it under the ring. Hopefully, your ring will slide right off.
12. Soap Scum Remover
You can use Vaseline to shine up your bathroom hardware. Apply a little bit to your faucet and handles, allowing the Vaseline to soak into the soap scum. Then just wipe it off.
13. Battery Corrosion
Battery corrosion can cause your get-away vehicle to have trouble starting. You can prevent corrosion by applying a tablespoon or so of Vaseline to your battery terminals. Be sure to disconnect the battery terminals first carefully.
14. Wood Finisher
You can finish wood with Vaseline by applying a light coat to your wood and buffing it with a soft cloth. The coating will help protect your wood from moisture damage.
15. Painting Projects
If you don’t have access to painter’s tape, you can use Vaseline instead. Just cover the areas you do not want to paint with a thin layer of Vaseline. You can simply wipe it off when your painting project is complete.
16. Bug Bites
Some people claim that Vaseline is the best remedy for an itchy bug bite. What do you think?
17. Wound Care
If you have a minor scrape or cut, you can help it heal faster with Vaseline. Vaseline helps to keep the wound moisturized, so it does not scab. It will keep scars supple and will provide a barrier over the wound to help keep germs out and prevent infection.
18. Skin Cleanser
If you are working on the homestead and get covered in pine sap or some other sticky stuff, you can use Vaseline to get it off. Rub some into your skin before washing to help remove the goo.
19. Rust Prevention
Regular use can cause your tools to get rusty. Buff your hammers, knives, and other tools with a light coating of Vaseline. The Vaseline will prevent humidity and moisture from causing your tools to rust.
Vaseline can be used as a lubricant to stop squeaking and sticking. Apply a little to the track of your sliding glass door, on the hinge of your car door, or anything else that squeaks or sticks.
Vaseline has long been used as a base for cosmetics. Mix in a bit of color to create a tinted lip gloss. Use it as a base for lotion and even as hair pomade.
22. Makeup Remover
You can also use Vaseline to remove your makeup. Apply a small amount to a cotton ball and use it to wipe away makeup, but be careful not to get it in your eyes.
23. Shaving Cream
If you run out of shaving cream in a pinch, you can use Vaseline in its place to protect your skin.
24. Pet Paws
In hot summers and cold winters, the paws of your pup can become dry and cracked. Put a little Vaseline on the pads of their feet to soothe and soften.
25. Hairball Remedy
If your cat is getting hairballs, you can put a small dollop of Vaseline on their paw. The cat will lick off the Vaseline, which will coat their digestive tract and prevent hairballs.
It might be hard to start a fire in emergencies, but Vaseline can help. Soak a cotton ball in Vaseline and then light the cotton ball. Be careful because petroleum jelly is very flammable! Learn more here.
27. Firearm Lubricant
You need your firearms in good working order. If you can’t get the right products for your gun, you can use Vaseline to lubricate the moving parts.
28. Gas Mask Seal
You don’t want your gas mask to leak, so try applying a thin layer of Vaseline around the edges to help it seal better. If you have facial hair, use a heavy Vaseline layer to keep air from getting between your skin and the mask.
29. Stuck Zipper
If your zipper is stuck, you might be able to get it working by adding a little Vaseline to the zipper and working it in.
30. Blister Prevention
Long hikes can mean lots of painful blisters. You can help prevent blisters by applying a layer of Vaseline to your skin and then covering it with your sock.
31. Prevent Chafing
If your legs are prone to chaffing, you can apply a thin layer of Vaseline as a preventative.
32. Hose Fitting Issues
If your hoses are hard to attach and remove, you can apply Vaseline to the seals and fittings to make them turn more easily.
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