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Training

Healing Non-Scents

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I’ve had a litany of injuries lately which have curtailed my running. These injuries
have, however, inspired me to action in terms of testing the various pain
relief cream and ointment samples that I seem to collect from race goodie bags
at nearly every event I attend. And while I’m not medically qualified to
comment on the specific efficacy of these potions, nor have I tested them often
enough to name my personal favorite, I will comment on the common ground all
three of my test brands share: their subtle scents.

I
have a serious aversion to most perfumed body products, as they tend to
irritate my allergies. So I was pleased to discover that these three pain
relief products are all mild-smelling. However, no matter how lightly scented, each
still has its unique olfactory attributes.

Traumeel
is a homeopathic ointment used to treat muscle pain, inflammation and bruising.
Its scent is ever so slight and reminds me of medical supplies – if you get up
close and personal with a fresh Band-Aid, you’ll know what I mean. There is
something comforting in that smell of cleanliness, and it is by far the least
noticeable scent of my three test subjects.

Next
up is Alcis pain relief cream, reminiscent in smell to an herbal hair shampoo
or conditioner. While it does have a noticeable aroma, it’s subtle and natural
enough to be pleasing, as opposed to overpowering. It’s the type of scent that
could easily be worn on purpose, and I rather like the idea of my therapeutic
cream blending in with, rather than overpowering, other body products.

 Rounding
out my trio of pain-soothers is Flex-Power pain relief cream, with its unique
“Clean Scent.” The smell is indeed clean and mild, although it does stand out.
And while the scent is a far cry from the old-school menthol vapor of Ben-Gay,
it triggers certain high-school training room sensory memories for me. I’m
actually rather fond of the sights, sounds and smells of sports therapy, and I
find this scent similarly likeable – it’s just not the one I would choose to
wear under my dress for an evening out.


Holly Bennett