Vaseline

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Vaseline
Vaseline logo for the body lotion
Product type Petroleum jelly body lotion
Owner Unilever
Introduced 1872
Markets Global
Website www.vaseline.com

Vaseline /ˈvæsəˌln/[1][2][note 1] is a brand of petroleum jelly based products owned by Anglo-Dutch company Unilever. Products include plain petroleum jelly and a selection of skin creams, soaps, lotions, cleansers, deodorants and personal lubricants.

The Vaseline name is considered generic in Portuguese and Spanish speaking countries, where the Unilever products are called Vasenol, and in German, Nordic and Slavic speaking countries.

History[edit]

An image from Vaseline company archives.

The first known reference to the name Vaseline was by the inventor of petroleum jelly, Robert Chesebrough in his U.S. patent for the process of making petroleum jelly (U.S. Patent 127,568) in 1872. "I, Robert Chesebrough, have invented a new and useful product from petroleum which I have named Vaseline..."

The word is believed to come from German Wasser (water) + Greek έλαιον [elaion] (oil) + scientific-sounded ending -ine.[3]

In 1859, Chesebrough went to the oil fields in Titusville, Pennsylvania, and learned of a residue called "rod wax" that had to be periodically removed from oil rig pumps. The oil workers had been using the substance to heal cuts and burns. Chesebrough took samples of the rod wax back to Brooklyn, extracted the usable petroleum jelly, and began manufacturing the medicinal product he called Vaseline.[4]

Vaseline was made by the Chesebrough Manufacturing Company until the company was purchased by Unilever in 1987.

Usage[edit]

While Vaseline can be used as a lubricant, it is also a useful moisture insulator for local skin conditions characterized by tissue dehydration. Vaseline helps protect minor cuts and burns.

Vaseline Lip Therapy[edit]

Vaseline have released a product called Vaseline Lip Therapy. These flavors include:

  • Original (clear)
  • Cocoa Butter (clear)
  • Rosy Lips (leaves a pink tint on lips)

References[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Also pronounced with the main stress on the last syllable /ˌvæsəˈln/. Non-native speakers of English usually pronounce the s as /z/.

Citations[edit]

  1. ^ "Definition of Vaseline". The Free Dictionary. Retrieved 7 November 2013. 
  2. ^ "Define Vaseline". Dictionary.com. Retrieved 7 November 2013. 
  3. ^ Online Etymology Dictionary
  4. ^ The History of Vaseline Petroleum Jelly began in the Pennsylvania Oil Fields!, Drake Well Museum pamphlet, copyright 1996 by Holigan Group Ltd, Dallas, Texas

External links[edit]

Media related to Vaseline at Wikimedia Commons