When I was young, my grandmother would put Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream on my lips when I’d come in from playing in the snow during my winter visit. I knew it worked (she even rubbed it on my knee once when I scraped it playing), but what I didn’t know was the amazing history behind the product and that one day (now), I’d be using it again.
It’s funny how things come full circle, but this super effective formula is no joke. Developed in 1930 by Elizabeth Arden herself, it truly is the original multitasking beauty product. It’s called a cream, but it’s more of a petroleum jelly–type salve, and the scent is so distinctive—it reminds me of something you’d smell in a Prohibition era apothecary. The brand actually has a fragrance-free version now too.
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What makes this cream so legendary is its multi-use formula (key ingredients include petrolatum, vitamin E and salicylic acid), which beauty editors and makeup artists alike have praised for years. One of my favorite uses for it: healing dry skin. If I try a new retinol product that’s too strong and I’m left with a couple dry patches on my face, I sleep with a bit of it on, and by morning my skin is like new. Chapped lips? You will no longer think your chapstick is actually making your lips drier (you know you’ve thought that before!). This salve stays put on lips for hours and really drenches them with moisture. And, if you ever accidentally burn yourself with your curling iron, consider this your go-to. It helps heal minor burns and scrapes, in my opinion, faster than other OTC ointments.
Backstage at Fashion Week, makeup artists keep tubes in their kits to give models a bit of shine before walking down the runway—a tiny dab on eyelids and cheekbones gives a dewy glow. And, I can’t forget brows. Use a Q-tip to apply it to your brows to help keep them in place for a night out.
And now with summer approaching, it makes a great skin softener for rough, cracked heels and out-of-whack cuticles that need some love. Plus, if you catch too many rays and sunburn starts to set in, you’ll want to reach for this for its soothing properties.
The bottom line: If you’re looking for a product that does it all and then some, this is it. I keep a tube in my purse, at my desk and in my carry-on. You really can’t go wrong.