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Aquaphor logo.svg
Product typeSkin protectant ointment
OwnerBeiersdorf AG
Introduced1925; 98 years ago (1925)
WebsiteOfficial website Edit this at Wikidata

Aquaphor is a brand of over-the-counter (OTC) skin care ointments manufactured by Beiersdorf Inc., an affiliate of Beiersdorf AG. Aquaphor is offered in four product ranges: There are two skin protectant ointments.[1] Aquaphor Original Ointment, used as a compounding agent [2][3] and Aquaphor Advanced Therapy Healing Ointment, sold in mass retail outlets. The other product ranges include: Aquaphor Lip Repair and Lip Repair + Protect SPF 30, and Aquaphor Baby.

Aquaphor has been available in the United States market for over 90 years. In accordance with the Food and Drug Administration's OTC Skin Protectant Monograph [1] Aquaphor, containing 41 percent petrolatum (or petroleum jelly), the active ingredient, temporarily protects minor cuts, scrapes, and burns; protects and helps relieve chapped or cracked skin and lips; helps protect from the drying effects of wind and cold weather.[4]

Aquaphor is used and recommended by health care professionals for minor post-operative wounds or defects.[5]


First US trademark for "Aquaphor", dated 26 May 1925

1925: Aquaphor was developed in the Beiersdorf Inc laboratories in the USA. It was trademarked that year by Herman A. Metz, president of Beiersdorf Inc at that time.

1929: Beiersdorf sold Aquaphor’s trade marks to Duke Laboratories in order to manufacture products in the country.[6]

1936: Aquaphor’s first product offering was sold to doctors, pharmacists and hospitals in 5 lb. containers.

1960: Aquaphor production was discontinued during World War II and restarted by Duke Laboratiories in 1960. One lb cans and 2 oz tubes were sold to medical professionals.[6]

1973: Beiersdorf repurchased all trademarks from Duke Laboratories.[6]

1982: Aquaphor tube was introduced and directly sold to consumers for the first time.

1991: A new formulation Aquaphor Advanced Therapy Healing Ointment was launched, an addition to the Aquaphor Original Ointment.

2003: Aquaphor Baby Healing Ointment & Gentle Wash were introduced.

2011: Aquaphor Lip Repair was introduced

2012: Aquaphor Lip Repair + Protect SPF 30 was launched and Aquaphor is launched globally by Beiersdorf affiliates in 25 other countries.

2013: Aquaphor achieved the Good Housekeeping Seal.[7]

Properties and ingredients[edit]

In a study funded by Aquaphor's parent company, it was found that their "Healing Ointment" product was associated with (but did not cause) decreased redness around the wound but did not in any way perform better than other products clinically.[8]

Aquaphor is not comedogenic and does not contain any fragrances, preservatives, or dyes.[9]

Unlike Vaseline (100% petrolatum), which is occlusive, Aquaphor (41% petrolatum) claims to form a semi-occlusive barrier on the skin. If correct, this in theory should enable the transmission of water and oxygen, which is important for wound healing and the formation of a protective moist healing environment.[10] However, no studies have been conducted using this brand to test these healing claims.

Key ingredients[edit]


An active ingredient and OTC skin protectant, petrolatum forms an occlusive barrier on the skin and helps retain moisture.[4]

Mineral oil

A colorless, odorless, light oil, commonly obtained as a highly refined derivative of crude oil.[11] Baby oil is a perfumed variety of mineral oil.


A wax derived from the purification of the natural wax ozokerite.[12]

Lanolin alcohol

A subfraction of lanolin (wool wax), a mixture of hydrocarbons that imparts emulsifying properties and provides emollient (skin smoothing) properties. Lanolin alcohol is composed of cholesterol, other sterols, and free fatty acids.[13] Moisturizers containing Cholesterol and fatty acid mixtures have been shown to provide skin benefits.[14] Since this ingredient is sourced from wool from animals, this product is not suitable for vegans.


A moisturizing factor and humectant that attracts and binds moisture in the stratum corneum (outer-most layer of epidermis), helping to keep it hydrated. It is commonly used as a moisturizing agent in lotions, creams, and cosmetics. Most glycerin used in products in the U.S. comes from animals. If it is natural glycerin, it will typically be labeled ‘plant derived’.[15][16][17]


Also known as pro- Vitamin B5, when applied topically, has humectant properties and conditions the skin.[18][19]


Derived from the Chamomile plant, bisabolol can have anti-inflammatory, anti-pruritic and healing effects in-vivo.[20][21]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b FDA OTC>"21 CFR Part 310 Drugs for Human Use". Retrieved 28 October 2014.
  2. ^ UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy >"The Pharmaceutics and Compounding Laboratory". Retrieved 4 November 2014.
  3. ^ Pharmacist's Letter >"Non-Sterile Compounding for the Community Pharmacy: Topical Preparations and Oral Liquid Dosage Forms". Pharmacist's Letter. Retrieved 4 November 2014.
  4. ^ a b "21 CFR Part 347 Skin Protectant". Retrieved 28 October 2014.
  5. ^ Nijhawan, Rajiv I; Smith, Lauren A; Kavita, Mariwalla (2013). "The Use of Topical Emollients in Post-Operative Wound Care Among Mohs Surgeons". Dermatol Surg. 39 (8): 2–6. doi:10.1111/dsu.12245. PMID 23777421. S2CID 205081548.
  6. ^ a b c Jones, Geoffrey; Lubinski, Christina (2011). "Managing Political Risk in Global Business: Beiersdorf 1914–1990" (PDF). Oxford University Press: 21, 25, 31. Retrieved 28 October 2014. {{cite journal}}: Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  7. ^ Good Housekeeping >"Good Housekeeping Seal". p. 12. Retrieved 28 October 2014.
  8. ^ Trookman, Nathan S; Rizer, Ronald L; Weber, Teresa (2011). "Treatment of minor wounds from dermatologic procedures: A comparison of three topical wound care ointments using a laser wound model". Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. 64 (3): 8–15. doi:10.1016/j.jaad.2010.11.011. ISSN 0190-9622. PMID 21247665.
  9. ^ Trookman, Nathan S; Rizer, Ronald L; Weber, Teresa (2011). "Treatment of minor wounds from dermatologic procedures: A comparison of three topical wound care ointments using a laser wound model". Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. 64 (3): 23–29. doi:10.1016/j.jaad.2010.11.011. ISSN 0190-9622. PMID 21247665.
  10. ^ Field, Charles K; Kerstein, Morris D (1994). "Overview of Wound Healing in a Moist Environment". The American Journal of Surgery. 167 (1A): 2–6. doi:10.1016/0002-9610(94)90002-7. PMID 8109679.
  11. ^ "the definition of mineral oil". Retrieved 19 September 2017.
  12. ^ "the definition of ceresin". Retrieved 19 September 2017.
  13. ^ Loden, Marie; Barany, Ebba (2008). "Skin-identical Lipids Versus Petrolatum in the Treatment of Tape-stripped and Detergent-perturbed Human Skin". Acad Dermatol Venerol. 80 (8): 412–415. doi:10.1080/000155500300012774. ISSN 0001-5555. PMID 11243632.
  14. ^ Buraczewska, I.; Berne, B.; Lindberg, M.; Torma, H.; Loden, M. (2007). "Changes in skin barrier function following long-term treatment with moisturizers, a randomized controlled trial". British Journal of Dermatology. 156 (3): 492–498. doi:10.1111/J.1365-2133.2006.07685.X. PMID 17300239. S2CID 45437649.
  15. ^ Bjoerklund, Sebastian; Engblom, Johan; Sparr, Emma (2013). "Glycerol and urea can be used to increase skin permeability in reduced hydration conditions". European Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences. 50 (5): 638–645. doi:10.1016/j.ejps.2013.04.022. PMID 23643739.
  16. ^ Fluhr, J.W.; Gloor, M.; Lehmann, L.; Lazzerini, S; Distante, F.; Berardeska, E. (1999). "Glycerol Accelerates Recovery of Barrier Function In Vivo". Acta Derm Venereol. 79 (6): 418–421. doi:10.1080/000155599750009825. PMID 10598752.
  17. ^ Fluhr, J.W.; Darlenski, R.; Surber, C. (2008). "Glycerol and the skin: holistic approach to its origin and functions". British Journal of Dermatology. 159 (79): 418–421. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2133.2008.08643.x. PMID 18510666. S2CID 22435026.
  18. ^ Ebner, Fritz; Heller, Andreas; Rippke, Frank; Tausch, Irene (2002). "Topical Use of Dexpanthenol in Skin Disorders". American Journal of Clinical Dermatology. 3 (6): 427–433. doi:10.2165/00128071-200203060-00005. ISSN 1175-0561. PMID 12113650. S2CID 35836478.
  19. ^ Proksch, E.; Nissen, H.P. (2002). "Dexpanthenol enhances skin barrier repair and reduces inflammation after sodium lauryl sulphate-induced irritation". J Dermatology Treat. 13 (4): 173–178. doi:10.1080/09546630212345674. PMID 19753737. S2CID 24821603.
  20. ^ Kim, S.; Jung, E.; Kim, JH; Park, YH; Lee, J.; Park, J. (2011). "Inhibitory effects of (-)-α -bisabolol on LPS-induced inflammatory response in RAW264.7 macrophages". Food Chem Toxicol. 49 (10): 2580–2585. doi:10.1016/j.fct.2011.06.076. PMID 21771629.
  21. ^ Arenberger, P.; Arenbergerova, M.; Drozenova, H.; Hladikova, M; Holcova, S. (2011). "Effect of topical heparin and levomenol an atopic dermatitis: a randomized four-arm, placebo-controlled, double-blind clinical study". J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol. 25 (6): 688–694. doi:10.1111/J.1468-3083.2010.03950.X. PMID 21214633. S2CID 13145100.

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