I am a clumsy girl. I mean, really clumsy. At the time of this writing (8:45AM), I have already this morning bashed my knee against the bathroom counter and jammed my finger against the railing in the stairwell. I am already dreading winter with its inherent slips and falls...
Luckily, my friend Sean has introduced me to my new favourite product - bruise cream! I picked up some of Zax's Bruise Cream in August, and have been using it on my various bumps and lumps long enough now to provide a review...
The instructions on the package say to use it three times a day, but I'll admit that I forget to do that since I'm lazy, I mostly remember in the morning and at night during my regular moisturizing routine... And maybe it's psychosomatic, but I really feel like it makes the bruises both lighter and last for less time.
In case you don't know, a bruise results from a bash that happens with enough force to damage capillaries (and sometimes venules), so that blood seeps into the surrounding tissue. Not super-damaging in the small variety, but big accidents can cause big bruising...
The three active (and natural) ingredients in Zax's Bruise Cream are arnica, witch hazel and menthol. Here's how each of these things work with relation to bruising:
Arnica: One of the compounds in arnica is sesquiterpene lactone, which can assist in the healing of bruises by decreasing swelling, speeding blood reabsorption to the surrounding tissue, and decreasing pain.
Witch hazel: Witch hazel contains tannins, which give it astringent properties (in a pinch I have used witch hazel by itself as a mild astringent, and while the smell is unpleasant at best, it is gentle on the skin). It helps tighten up the blood vessels which have been damaged by a bash on, say, the underside of a countertop.
Menthol: Provides a cooling sensation, especially useful if the bruise is aching.
It doesn't smell great, I'm not going to lie to you. But it works, and for me at this clumsy stage in my life (wasn't I supposed to outgrow my gangly teenager years?) it is a godsend.
Five stars. No question.