Sunday, March 04, 2018 by Zoey Sky
Most people use petroleum jelly to remove makeup or heal minor burns and scrapes, but preppers know that this versatile product has a lot of survival uses. (h/t to SurvivalSullivan.com)
Petroleum jelly, the generic term for Vaseline, is a popular petroleum byproduct that is considered a lubricant. Do take note that there are other brands of petroleum jelly being sold on the market today. This article is written with Vaseline in mind since it’s a “non-carcinogenic, highly refined, and triple purified” brand of petroleum jelly.
Vaseline is an organic product, and it doesn’t have fragrances, colors, or irritants. It’s also hypo-allergenic and it won’t block your pores. Take note that some of the uses listed below may not work as well if you use another brand of petroleum jelly.
Survival uses for petroleum jelly
- Accelerant — If you’re having trouble starting a fire, you can use some cotton balls dipped in petroleum jelly. Keep several cotton balls dipped in the mixture so you have a handy accelerant for when you’re going camping. Once ignited, the cotton balls will burn for about 10 minutes or so, even if it’s rainy or windy. Store them in a sealed container so they don’t dry out.
- Emergency candle — If you really need a candle but you can’t find one, take a spoonful of petroleum jelly and put it in a small dish or ashtray. Turn a cotton ball into a makeshift wick and rub some jelly on it then stick one end in the dish. Once you light the tip of the cotton ball wick, it should stay lit until all the petroleum jelly burns away. (Related: What’s in YOUR bug out bag? 10 must-have multipurpose survival tools.)
- First Aid — Petroleum jelly works for all sorts of first aid applications. You can use it to help stitched wounds heal faster or to moisturize dry and cracked heels. Petroleum jelly can also help prevent blisters on your feet, especially if you’re going on a long hike.
- Insect control — Apply some petroleum jelly on flat surfaces to keep crawling insects away. This will help keep ants away from items such as pet food or food storage. The product can also be applied to a sheet of paper if you need makeshift fly paper.
- Lubricant for machinery — You can use petroleum jelly to lubricate all sorts of tools and items. It works on all sorts of things like squeaky door hinges, bicycle chains, or stuck closet doors.
- Restore leather — Preppers often own gear made of leather, and petroleum jelly will work as well as leather protection products and conditioners. Dab some petroleum jelly on your gear to restore the soft sheen of cracked and rough leather.
- Skin protection — When camping or hunting in cold weather, you can use petroleum jelly to protect your skin from frostbite. Smear a moderate layer of petroleum jelly on the exposed skin. You can also use it on your lips if you don’t have lip balm.
Petroleum jelly substitutes
Since Vaseline petroleum jelly is an organic product derived from the fossil fuel petroleum, not everyone will want to use it. If you’re hesitant to use Vaseline, check out these nature-friendly alternatives:
- Beeswax — A natural wax, beeswax is usually an ingredient for lip balm. It can also moisturize your skin. You can also use beeswax as an accelerant.
- Coconut oil — Coconut oil is another natural alternative to Vaseline. It can be used for cooking and other purposes.
- Honey — A sugary superfood, honey also has many survival uses. It can heal and soothe skin, and it can also provide you with a much-needed energy boost if you combine it with other foods. When possible, purchase local organic honey so you can enjoy more of its health benefits.
- Jojoba 0il — Technically not a true oil, jojoba oil is more like a liquid wax. Its composition is similar to human sebum or the oily substance the skin secretes. Jojoba oil can help skin retain moisture and it also has healing properties.
- Olive oil — Olive oil can be used for cooking and lubrication.
Don’t forget to include a container of petroleum jelly in your bug-out bag or your survival gear. Even a tiny jar of the substance could help you survive the wilderness.
You can read more articles about other supplies that you may need when SHTF at Preparedness.news.