What Spring Chickens remember about Germolene

What Spring Chickens remember about Germolene

It seems Germolene as we remember it is no longer available over the counter and it has been this way since 2014.

The distinctive pink ointment scented with oil of wintergarden has been replaced by a less distinctive white cream what a shame!

For many, it was the smell of our childhood.

The puckering ping of that tin lid
revealed a halo of pink.
Deliciously medicinal
it polished up my nostrils
but now it’s been lost
in a knee-stinging, coal-fire mist. Anon

Here are just a few Spring Chicken memories of the product.

“My dad took a tin with him during the war, after long marches he used it on his feet. Swore by it, and always had a tin when we were growing up. Smelt lovely!”

“It was brilliant when my late husband and I used to go to Tunisia, we were friends with one of the boatmen who was married to an English girl and he always asked us to fetch tins of it out. His wife used to treat all the kid’s cuts with it.”

“Yes it seems like it was the only medicinal product around and was used for cuts and grazes and I think people used it to get rid of hemorrhoids. If you had a small amount of it applied you would smell for hours and hours.”

“My mum swore by it, one of her three she swore by. The others were Witch Hazel and White oils (if my son got hurt at football he’d say don’t tell nan she’ll put the stuff on it. It stunk).”

“This reminds me of when we lived in flats in Kirkby and we had an open fire and our budgie just flew into it we were all crying we were only little kids we all thought the poor thing would die but my lovely mum covered it in Germolene. Thankfully it survived and went on to live to about ninety in budgie years, haha my mum always had this.”

I love the smell of this, when I stayed with my gran she used to rub it on my chest in the winter.

“Still use the cream but remember the ointment well, my mam swore by it with camphorated oil rubbed on the chest. Don’t get me started on goose grease!!!”

Let us know your memories.
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  • Germaline, Wintergreen, Canfferated oil along with lots of other pills and potions were inexpensive cures past down for generations, that were part of our nostalgic childhood, before 1946 and the health service, vast numbers of people couldn’t afford doctors, so treating themselves was the only way, except in dyer emergencies, If my grandma said it would cure, it would, I might be strange but I still love those smells, I think they a soothing.

  • My
    Mum swore by it , rubbed in knees, when I grazed them , always a dab on the plaster before covering the cut , dabbed on the end of my nose when she ran out of vick , if I head a headache , rubbed on the forehead . The smell was soothing . Hundred and one uses .

  • i live in Australa now and still ask any relative visiting to bring me out someGERMOLENE , Have used it all my life – bit my adult children cant understand my fixation with it —- LIFESAVER

  • I live abroad now for a long time, but when l go to the UK, l stock up on tubes of Germolene and it’s pink. I love the stuff. It soothes mosquito bites a treat. The smell reminds me of England. It just won’t be the same if it’s white. I’d better ration the tubes l have left.

  • You can still buy the tubes of germolene in the shop in the UK I live in France and bring over at lease 2 tubes and parsetamol

  • I remember Germolene, Mum always applied it to cuts, grazes and stings. That distinctive smell – and it did the trick. Ah, yes I can smell it now. Memories.

  • Loved the smell of germoline, growing up our medicine cabinet ( part of the top shelf in the pantry) consisted of a large green hexagonal bottle of camomile lotion, milk of magnesia, the vile tasting Indian brandy, colts foot oil ( I think that’s what it was called and it smelt awful) Beechams powder, firey jack and germoline.
    There was always a jar of Cod liver oil and malt which I still love to this day and it was given religiously every day in the winter.

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