Product review: 3 anti-chafing products (2Toms, Vaseline, Body Glide)

Skin Chafing

If you are like me who is a runner and exercise enthusiast, you would have probably experienced skin chafing, the most annoying and painful result of skin rubbing against skin or clothing.

Chafing can occur anywhere on our body, but the thighs, groin, underarms (armpits), and nipples are the most vulnerable.

Do you recall your worst chafing experience?

I can.

My worst chafing experience was during Taipei Fubon Marathon 2013 - my fifth full marathon.

From the start to the finish of the long, arduous but unforgettable 42 km journey, I ran in the rain with strong cold wind.  So I literally ran, sang, and danced in the rain throughout the whole 42 km! It was such a memorable experience. (You can read more from my race report by clicking here.)

I also experienced the worst chafing with the 42 km full marathon in the rain.

I was using Vaseline's White Petroleum Jelly as anti-chafing cream for my thighs at that time. But I think it was due to the rain, the water washed away part of it. Perhaps my skin also became softer under the rain, resulting in stronger friction between my skin and running shorts.

I remember I had to walk like an elephant with my legs wide open with the very bad thigh chafing back to the hotel. I also had chafing around my waist area where I tightened my pouch. Thank goodness! No chafing at my underarms and nipples. Phew!!

During the shower time, I was screaming, "Ouch! Ouch! Ouch!" so loud that I believe other hotel guests on the same floor could hear my scream!! 😜

ran, sang, danced in the rain at Taipei Fubon Marathon 2013 - worst chafing experience due to running in the rain for the whole 42 km.
Of course, I have also encountered chafing in few other races, notably longer distance runs (i.e. my recent Route 68 Challenge - ultra marathon 50 km ) or very hot and humid conditions with lots of sweats.

Over the last few years, I have used 3 products to prevent chafing:

  1. Vaseline white petroleum jelly
  2. 2Toms SportShield
  3. Body Glide anti-chafing balm

I would like to share my personal experience with each product purely from a user's perspective. I will leave it to you to decide which is best for your own needs.

I'm also ranking them in terms of my favorites:

No.1: 2Toms SportShield - multi-purpose chafing and blister relief

2Toms SportShield - multi-purpose chafing and blister relief

Product highlights

  • liquid roll-on
  • provides 24 hour protection against running and friction (won't melt)
  • sweat proof and water proof
  • creates an invisible, silky smooth protective barrier
  • silicone-based: Non-staining, non-toxic, non-greasy
  • easily removed from the skin with soap and water (leaving absolutely no residue)
  • ideal for use on the inside of thighs, over nipples, on feet, underarms and under bra or athletic  support traps
  • performs under most grueling conditions and will not rub off
  • works under wet suits
  • contains no animal products
  • 100% 2TOMS guarantee

👍What I love about 2Toms SportShield

This has got to be my most favorite anti-chafing product. And I use this 2Toms SportShield the most in my races. 

The long lasting protection really allows me to focus on running without the unnecessary worries of chafing. The silky smooth protective layer is awesome. It's non-sticky and non-greasy too. Even for application, the liquid roll-on is the best of all! I can keep my hands clean. I also don't use them excessively and create wastage. In fact, with the price (cost) versus benefits that I gain, it's also the most valuable product of all - very long lasting (longest of the three), very functional, extremely effective for chafing-prevention.

👎What I don't love about 2Toms SportShield

Come to think of it, I don't have any specific things that I don't like about 2Toms SportShield. :) Any short comings of other products that I have tried, 2Toms SportShield manages to fulfill them and more. 

If ever there is one, it will be the high price. 2Toms SportShield is the most expensive of the three. Nonetheless, the long-last product still makes it worth the buy.  It will be awesome if the price can be reduced, or more sale by retailers so that I can buy at a discounted price. haha!

Vaseline - white petroleum jelly

Product highlights

  • 100% pure petroleum jelly. Triple-purified. Purity guaranteed.
  • Gentle on skin, hypoallergenic and non-comedogenic (won't clog pores)
  • Reduces the appearance of fine, dry lines
  • Helps protect minor cuts, scrapes and burns
  • Protects skin from windburn and chapping
  • Recognized by the National Eczema Association
  • Best for dry skin, dry itchy skin, dryness associated with eczema

👍What I love about Vaseline - white petroleum jelly

This has got to be the most popular anti-chafing product for all sports enthusiasts - runners, triathletes, and any other sports. 

  • very economical in terms of price (cheapest of all the three products)
  • easily available in any pharmacies 
  • very effective for anti-chafing and skin protection
  • multi-purpose - anti chafing, lip chapping, skin dryness, skin itchiness
When I started running, I was introduced to Vaseline's white petroleum jelly by my running friends as a way to prevent chafing. I in fact have used a few bottles already. It is the cheapest compared to the other 2 products yet very functional and doing its job well.

👎What I don't love about Vaseline - white petroleum jelly

It leaves my hands messy, greasy and sticky. haha!

I also have a hard time applying Vaseline onto my thigh area evenly. I usually end up some areas to be thicker while another thinner. Unlike the roller type which can help to apply evenly and smoothly. Perhaps this has to do with the design of the product. 

No. 3: Body Glide - The original anti-blister, anti-chafing balm

Body Glide - the orifinal anti-blister, anti-chafing balm

Product highlights

  • Protects skin against rubbing that causes chafing, irritation and raw skin
  • The balm forms a dry, invisible barrier, effective wherever skin is rubbed by clothing, footwear or skin.
  • Preferred choice over messy, wet creams, gels and powders
  • No petroleum, lanolin or mineral oils.
  • effective and long-lasting for all day protection
  • Sweat resistant - sweat escapes and lets skin breath, keeping pores clog free. 
  • Clothing, footwear and wet suits safe.
  • Skin safe - made with allergen free, plant-derived ingredients, vegan approved.
  • Quick and easy - apply directly from the stick. Never wet or greasy. Washes off with mile soap.

👍What I love about Body Glide - the original anti-blister, anti-chafing balm

I bought 2 units of Body Glide because I ran out of my 2Toms SportShield liquid roll-on. With 2 races coming up and no time to buy it at a specific sport specialty store, I decided to give Body Glide a try. 

I love about its dryness

When applying onto my thigh and underarms area, I feel as if I am applying Speed Stick deodorant balm on my underarms. Great similarities due to the dryness of the balm! My hands are not messy at all. 

But may be this is the only thing I love about Body Glide. 

👎What I don't love about Body Glide - the original anti-blister, anti-chafing balm

After only 2 races and 2 Sunday LSD runs, I have only 1/4 left in my first unit. It surely finishes fast for that kind of price (in the middle of the three). Additionally, the design of the product with plastic edge sticking out has created some discomfort when applying on my thigh skin, especially with 1/4 left.

May be it's my personal preference, I prefer to have something silky that provides the protective layer during friction between skin or between skin and clothing. The dryness of Body Glide is the key reason i love but it's also the reason why i don't like. It makes my thighs feel a bit awkward when rubbing against each other. I feel as if the dryness of the balm is blocking the "gliding" effect during friction. Anyway, it's only my personal experience.

Which one is your anti-chafing solution?

Above is purely my personal ranking based on my own favorites and personal experience.

If you were to ask me which one is best for you, I believe it all boils down to personal preference.

If you are price conscious and would like something very multi-purpose, I will recommend Vaseline.

If you prefer dryness or balm-type during application, I will recommend Body Glide.

If you prefer best user experience with the non-greasy silky feeling but a little price tag, I will recommend 2Toms SportShield.

😊Happy anti-chafing free running!😊

Written by Vincent Khor on May 10, 2017


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