Review of "Deep Heat Rub"

published 29/08/2017 | 2mennycds
Member since : 28/08/2015
Reviews : 287
Members who trust : 72
About me :
Best wishes to all, and thanks for your kind rates and comments, have been half-expecting the latest announcement for at least the last year. Have thoroughly enjoyed being a member over the last couple of years or so.
Pro Effective for mild aches & pains or as partial solution
Cons Smells; irritates eyes if accidental contact made
Value for Money
Side effects

"If you can't stand the heat (or the smell)..."

Before applying - 2 sad knees!

Before applying - 2 sad knees!

Sometimes, even after a fairly non-vigorous walk, my knees start to play up. My right knee plays up a bit more than my left, but both play up to a certain extent. They’re both the same age and look very similar, as the photos show – I think they’re twins! (my photos are “before” and “after” portraits).

About ten years ago I had a “frozen” shoulder – I could have been a “Frozen” star long before Elsa, and feel a little cheated. Anyway, having seen the adverts, I thought I’d give Deep Heat rub a try. I’ve used it, then, for a “frozen” shoulder and for stiff and aching knees.


Deep Heat is available as a “rub”, available in various sized tubes, or as a spray. This review is of the “rub” – a greasy ointment-type substance for smearing onto the affected area and subsequent rubbing in.

The tube comes in a card box, suitably coloured to suggest flaming heat. The packaging is almost universally recyclable. The tube (at least mine) is made of soft metal.

As is to be expected, the top of the tube is security-sealed with thin meta, easily punctured by a raised point on the plastic cap.

The ointment is of medium consistency.

It comes with a leaflet that should be read before applying the product. It should also be retained for future reference. I’m sorry to admit that I have failed to do so! Basic instructions are written on the tube itself.

The product has a shelf life of approximately 3 years, which, to me, makes it worthwhile to buy simply to “have in”.


~ ~ ~ “Effective relief from muscular & rheumatic aches, pains & stiffness”

~ ~ ~ “Pain relief PLUS heat”


These are listed as: (Active ingredients) Methyl Salicylate 12.80% w/w, Menthol 5.91 w/w, Eucalyptus Oil 1.97% w/w, Turpentine Oil 1.47% w/w; (also contains) Sodium cetostearyl sulfate; Cetostearyl alcohol, Propylene glycol, Wool fat [lanolin], Liquid paraffin, Dowicil, Water.

A word or two of warning

The accompanying leaflet should be consulted before use.

~ ~ ~ ~ Official advice

For the relief of muscular pains and stiffness including rheumatic pain, back pain, sciatica, fibrositis, sprains, bruises and chilblains

Do not use if allergic to any of the ingredients or painkillers such as aspirin, ibuprofen and other NSAIDS

Not to be used on children under 5 years

Consult your doctor before use if you are pregnant, breast feeding, asthmatic or on any prescribed medicines

Store below 25° C

Do not use after the expiry date

Apply a thin layer to the skin

Apply 2-3 times per day

~ ~ ~ ~ 2menny’s advice

The Menthol and Eucalyptus ingredients mean that the stuff smells. Anyone within a yard or two at home or in the workplace will latch into it. Best to apply it as far ahead of being in company as possible if you don’t want to be plagued by wrinkled noses and cries of “what’s that smell!” On the other hand, if you want to annoy family members or colleagues…

It is designed for aching muscles or joints. It should NOT be used on sprains – medical advice for sprains is to apply something COOLING to reduce swelling. Applying heat may well make swelling worse.

You really MUST wash your hands IMMEDIATELY AND THOROUGHLY after applying Deep Heat. I find liquid soap the most effective. Get the stuff anywhere near your mouth or, still worse, your eyes, and you will regret it!

Despite the product’s claim to be non-staining, it is greasy, and may stain clothes – or possibly make them smell. Given its liquid paraffin/oils base, it will almost certainly stain if it comes into contact with clothing directly from the tube. I think it’s best to apply it when wearing older clothes or night clothes, at least for a time after applying it, to ensure it is thoroughly absorbed by the skin before wearing smarter clothes.

Persistent or acute pain or stiffness should, of course, be referred for expert medical attention

If suffering from prolonged or repeated aches or stiffness, I think it’s worth evaluating posture and habits. Last Christmas I purchased a laptop computer to replace my geriatric desktop. I far prefer it, but using it at a dining table – or, far worse, on my lap, as intended! – increases my tendency to adopt poor sitting posture and the tendency to keep my arm stretched out on/over the mouse (as well as, incidentally, the tendency to use inadequate lighting).

Applying it

Deep Heat should be applied SPARINGLY to the affected area – a small amount goes further than you may think. Bear in mind that it contains pain relief, and shouldn’t therefore be applied more than 3 times per day or too liberally.

It needs to be rubbed in. Simply smearing it will not be effective. Within reason, I try to rub it in with fairly firm circular movements; as well as aiding absorption, I think – as does a physiotherapist friend – that the massage procedure stimulates circulation and, therefore, relief.

During and immediately after application, a noticeable local warmth is experienced (as is the product’s menthol/eucalyptus smell!). Within about 10 minutes aching is eased. How long-lasting the effect is will depend on the severity of the symptoms.


It’s very subjective, and not very scientific, but I certainly perceive benefit after applying this product. My knees ache less and feel less stiff, and I consider that applying it soon after exercise and at the first onset of stiffness or aching aids its effect. Similar products from other brands are available; I confess that I haven’t tried these, so can’t compare. On the other hand, perhaps the fact that I haven’t seen the need to try the competition says something of its benefit.

I experienced some benefit when used on my frozen shoulder a few years ago, though I also needed to undertake exercises for this to free the joint.

In fact, I sometimes apply it before undertaking a walk, especially if the walk entails a gradient. Mrs M has a chronic respiratory condition and any ascents are fairly modest, but my knees seem to object more to descents than ascents.

Whether applied as a precaution or remedy, I do notice an improvement. I’m not entirely surprised; applying heat to muscle or to joints is recommended by many doctors. For muscular pain, I’ve sometimes tried the “old” remedy of alternating applying warm and cold to the affected area (hit water bottle followed by ice pack).

With deep heat, I am satisfied that the effect eases the time for which I feel the discomfort. I’m sorry I can’t be more scientific, but the stiffness and aching are alleviated more quickly after applying the product.

The product is NOT a miracle cure, and some adverts for products like this are, frankly, grossly misleading. If your knees are arthritic, they won’t be as good as new after a few applications to the point where you can throw yourself around a tennis court and suffer no ill effects!

With my frozen shoulder, Deep Heat alone was insufficient; I needed to complete some exercises to free the pinched nerve.

On that basis, and with the above provisos, I’m happy to continue to purchase and use Deep Heat rub as and when needed, and rate it stars.

Available from many high-street and on-line sources, some on-line supplier details as follows: Superdrug £3.25 (67g)/£4.59 (100g); Boots £3.25 (67g)/£4.60 (100g); Morrisons £2.94 (67g); Asda £2.90 (67g)

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Comments on this review

  • CelticSoulSister published 27/09/2017
  • LiveMusicLoverLyn published 20/09/2017
    It gives me asthma!
  • rolandrat123 published 11/09/2017
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