Pros: Works really well, smells really good, clears my sinuses, portable, inexpensive
Cons: What's in this stuff? Embarrassing to shove a tube up your nose in public.
In a recent review I wrote of my utter disappointment with a vapor plug-in product made by SudaCare. When congested I want relief. Quick relief and extreme relief. After the SudaCare failed me I went out and purchased a small tube of Vick's Vapor Inhaler hoping to find relief with it. I just wanted to be able to breathe through my nose, I didn't think I was asking too much.
About Vick's and the Vick's Vapor Inhaler
Vick's is the name in menthol/camphor/eucalyptus congestion remedies. I'd hazard a guess that an extremely large number of children in the US have been tucked into bed with a chest-ful of Vick's VapoRub on nights when they were feeling congested and sick. I love the stuff.
Vick's Vapor Inhaler seemed to be a portable, stick version of this great formula and I was eager to try it. The label said that this product was suitable for treating colds, allergies, hay fever and sinusitis. The label also says that this "special formula" shrinks swollen membranes to relieve your stuffy nose.
Active Ingredients: Contained in each inhaler: L-Desoxyephedrine (50 mg)
Inactive Ingredients: Special Vicks Vapors (Bornyl acetate, Camphor, Lavender oil, Menthol)
A note about the ingredients: I have read in other reviews that this product contains 50mg of Levmetamfetamine (apparently a methamphetamine derivative) which can cause you to test positive for illegal drugs. The little wrapper on my inhaler says L-Desoxyephedrine. So I checked drugstore.com's information, where they also have it listed as L-Desoxyephedrine. So I checked Vick's website, where they list the ingredient as Levmetamfetamine. I'm not a drug specialist and I don't know what the difference is between these two types of drugs, or how they'll show up on drug tests. I'd advise you to not use this product if you have an upcoming drug test, no matter which ingredient is on the label. I welcome any input in my "Comments" section that might shed some light on why there are two conflicting ingredients listed in separate places and what the differences are in the ingredients.
Directions: Adults are directed to take two inhalations into each nostril every two hours. Children are directed to use this product with adult supervision only, using only one inhalation in each nostril every two hours.
Using the Inhaler/How Well It Works
I pulled the inhaler out of its packaging in the CVS parking lot and used it immediately, I was that congested. I took a long, long deep breath through my nose, with all the enthusiasm you might see from a drug film, I was so sick of my congestion. What was amazing was that I could inhale fully from the instant I used this product. I went for the second nostril, again with a big, emphatic, glorious inhale. The first good inhale I had experienced in weeks. Perhaps it's one of these 'active' ingredients, but I did feel much more energetic, I think in part because the strong menthol/camphor smell has an invigorating effect but also in part because finally I could breathe! I could smell. It was glorious.
The effect lasted for about an hour. I used this product many times throughout the course of my head cold and I found that depending upon how determined my sinuses were to produce congestion the effect would last anywhere from half an hour to the full two hours. After I recovered from my cold, sometimes using this product only once was all it took to knock out temporary congestion.
How Much it Costs & Where to Buy
I have found this product at a number of grocery stores and drugstores and online as well. I've seen it retail for anywhere from $3.49 to $5.99. Mine has lasted for six months, which is a little longer than I think Vick's recommends using the inhaler.
For More Product Information: http://vicks.com/products/vapor_inhaler.shtml
I suffer from nasal congestion pretty frequently due to constant ongoing allergies. Vicks Vapor Inhaler has done a wonderful job of knocking out my congestion, whether its garden-variety allergic sneezing or a real head cold. I love this stuff.