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Lucas Papaw Ointment

September 21, 2012 Reviewed by admin 13 Comments

I have been caught out by a tricky little dilemma that almost never happens to me, acting with lack of research, an embarrassing lesson to learn but one that I think is worth sharing.

I have been using a “cult celebrity product” Lucas Papaw Ointment, and I have loved thinking I’m smearing the natural fermented fruit on my lips. Lucas Papaw Ointment is listed here in Australia with the Therapeutic Goods Authority (TGA) and as such only has to list the active ingredients. It is unable to be sold in America as it doesn’t have similar approval there, perhaps increasing exclusivity within the US market as you can still get it shipped over.

I have to say that here in Australia the product is not advertised; they have a very simplistic website but yet everyone is using it, and it is said that the company can’t keep up with the growing demand. All of these factors and having TGA approval made me never question what I have been putting on my lips until....

I was so excited to be opening my parcel from Marta this month (I will be reviewing YBF Define ($70 in the TIA shop) for lips and Say Yes To Cucumbers Eye Gel for the TIA community)and I was thinking while opening the box how much I love  getting Marta’s parcels.  Then I thought it would be kind of cool to send one back with a product I love and Lucas Papaw Ointment sprung to mind. So off I went to post some to Marta and I came home feeling really pleased with myself. Until it struck me while reading the red tube as I was applying some balm, the active ingredient listed is 39mg/g Carica Papaya Fresh Fermented Fruit and I thought, oh my gosh what is the rest of it then?

Research done, I am embarrassed to find that this “cult celebrity product” contains petroleum jelly and that the Australian TGA approval means that this ingredient never needed to be put on the tube also, there is no way of finding out exactly how much of it is petroleum jelly. There is really nothing wrong with using petroleum jelly; you can read a detailed review on the topic in ErinP’s post about Vaseline which is 100% petroleum jelly. Also there could be something said for Lucas Papaw Ointment having one of the highest concentrations of Fermented Pawpaw which believed to have healing properties. But as I am using the product as a lip balm there is the possibility that a small amount will be ingested and I would like to find a more natural alternative.

I’ve since found an Aussie company making natural version in direct competition to Lucas Papaw Ointment as a lip balm; it’s called Suvana Paw Paw and Honey Lip Balm. This one lists its ingredients and is 100% petroleum free with goodies like Cocoa Butter, Paw Paw, Honey and Vitamin E, it sounds much better  but I wonder if it is as effective.  I’ll definitely be trying Suvana Paw Paw and Honey Lip Balm and will submit a review in the future. I will also be sending Marta some tubes of Suvana’s Paw Paw and Honey Lip Balm to rectify the Petroleum Jelly oversight.

Part of what I love about reviewing for the TIA community is that I learn more about what I like, why I like it and why things are effective or ineffective. I thought I would share this lesson learned so we can all benefit from my oversight, research, research, research, the more we know the better!

  • May 23, 2018

    by Natalie

    Discovering paw paw was a blessing. I use it on my lips daily as it works better than any lip balm, and its great for cold sores (in fact the best treatment I ever used), its also great for burns or sore skin.
    I previously used Vaseline on my lips before finding this, and I would never go back. Until recently I had no idea the Lucas ointment was made from petroleum jelly, however there is a huge difference between the two products. Vaseline is nowhere near as effective and certainly doesn't treat cold sores.

    Anyway just wanted to say the biggest most important issue here is does it work?....and the answer to that question is yes, for me its a miracle ointment and I would never live without it, wherever you live you can buy it online and its worth the postage and lasts ages.
    I'd be keen to try the Suvana Paw Paw but the Lucas works so well I'm sceptical anything can beat it!

  • April 20, 2014

    by Katherine

    This product has the highest concentration (60%) pf paw paw on the market. Lucas paw paw ointment has only 4% and the rest is petroleum jelly

  • January 7, 2014

    by Kimmy

    I've been using Lucas Papaw for years now - not only on my lips but for burns, cuts, etc - it's the only ointment that works for me. As Jacki mentions they state that their products contain petroleum jelly so at least they're not really hiding it from the public.

    It's hard to find if you live outside Australia but sell them with free shipping

  • March 6, 2013

    by Sasi

    Hello all,
    I m leaving in Thailand. I would like to buy Lacas papaw ointment. Is you have any shop to sale it in Thailand.?


  • January 28, 2013

    by Victoria

    I am just recovering from a serious bout of rosacea and Lucas pawpaw ointment has been the only thing to calm it

  • July 21, 2012

    by Jacki

    Lots of inaccuracies here. First up, Pawpaw ointment is NOT a balm it's an ointment - for healing. It's a powerful remedy for healing wounds & other more serious skin issues. Not just for making lips feel moist and soft. If you want something for your lips use lip balm. If you want to heal burns, scalds, cuts, serious rashes etc USE PAWPAW cream or medical grade manuka honey. Secondly, the ingredients for Lucas pawpaw cream are very clearly stated on their website - and includes a discussion of petroleum jelly. Really easy to find on their site. And thirdly, there are several brands making pawpaw ointment. EG Brauer pawpaw ointment contains higher amounts of pawpaw (80mg/g) than Lucas and no petro jelly. Look for it in google. Also it has grapeseed oil, shea butter, honey & Vit E. But remember it's not just a lip balm. It's a serious medical ointment.

  • October 1, 2010

    by marta

    Hi Kerry and Susan
    I have been thinking about this before answering because I am not sure that I'd want some of the things that lighten skin on my mouth. However, I do have a few thoughts. By the way, Kerry's idea of Optyma is a very good one because it will help prevent future damage as it has a sunscreen.

    Anyway, how about exfoliating daily with Your Best Face <a href="" rel="nofollow">Prep Microdermabrasian </a>and follow with <a href="" rel="nofollow">Your Best Face Define</a> (formulated for the lips so nothing nasty that you wouldn't want to injest.

    The best thing I've found for dark spots is <a href="" rel="nofollow">Lumixyl</a>. But it does have a couple of toxic preservatives.

    Susan I presume that you've had it checked by a dermo and that it is benign. Talking of dermatologists, there is the laser option (although that procedure seems a little extreme for the lip).

    Hope that helps

  • September 30, 2010

    by Kerry

    The first thing I’d do is limit sun exposure to my lips so an SPF balm to protect from future colouration, Marta described a interesting lip product with an interesting sunscreen if you search Optima Perfect Lip; I have not tried it so I can’t tell you if it’s any good.
    As for a lightening or melanin inhibiting product I am really not sure, Marta any ideas??
    I am in the process of a month long trial of Your Best Face Define for lips so stay posted and I’ll see if that does anything to my lip pigmentation.
    I hope you find something.

  • September 30, 2010

    by sue

    Hii girls,

    Can anyone help me with the product that can fix the dark spot on my lips? Or maybe anything that can make my lips pink again (the safe one for sure). Thanks all....


  • September 21, 2010

    by Kerry

    Hi fellow TIAers,
    Thanks for all the positive feedback! I was sure a Lucas fan was going to slam me for this article because, let’s face it there are a lot of people like me who loved mindlessly smearing this stuff on their lips.
    I am so glad that you liked this article.
    Thanks again!

  • September 21, 2010

    by Shyema

    Great post! I just interviewed Louise Roe, an English TV presenter (she normally reports on fashion) and she told me this is her favorite lip balm! It was the first time I've heard of it. And funny thing is, I just started using a lip balm with paw paw in it myself (called "Smooch") Australian brand, My Bod. I looked up the ingredients and it seems to be pretty benign (Beeswax, Candelilla Wax, Castor Oil, Cetearyl Alcohol, Cocoa Butter, Shea Butter) and has a delicious vanilla scent. Might be a good substitution..

  • September 21, 2010

    by kim

    Thanks Kerry for this post. I have been seeing that red tube a lot lately and wondering what it is. Thanks for the great info!


  • September 21, 2010

    by Jana

    Thanks for the informative and interesting post, Kerry. I'm not a doctor or nurse, but I wanted to add something I learned about petroleum jelly use with patients on oxygen.

    During my mom's recent illness, she was on oxygen. One of the instructions we received about the use of oxygen was to be certain that any and all face, hand, or body products including lotions, potions, creams, and lip balms - most especially any products we used on her face and hands - be free of petroleum products. My understanding from those instructions is that, since petroleum jelly is a by-product of petroleum, it may pose a fire hazard when used close to the source of pure oxygen. I had to scrutinize the products we used, making certain none of them contained petroleum jelly, petrolatum, or any other ingredient that came from petroleum.

    We were also careful to make certain the products we used on our bodies & hands contained no petroleum because we were the ones caring for her & washing her face, adjusting her oxygen tube, etc.

    As I said, I'm not in the medical field and am simply passing on what I was told by the company that provided the oxygen and what I read from the instructions given with the machine & tanks.

    Looking forward to your Suvana review.

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