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Reviews > Health & Safety > Pain Relievers > Natures Willow Balm > Test Report by Gail Staisil

Nature's Willow Balm
Tester on Lake Superior Test Series by: Gail Staisil, Marquette, Michigan

Initial Report - August 14, 2020
Long Term Report - November 22, 2020

Tester Information

Name: Gail Staisil
Age: 67
Gender: Female
Height: 5' 9" (1.75 m)
Weight: 160 lb (73 kg)
Location: Marquette, Michigan USA
Email: woodswoman 2001 AT yahoo DOT com

For the last few years, backpacking has become a passion. I am a four-season backpacker and an off-trail navigator. Although I do take yearly trips to the American West or Southwest, the majority of my trips are in Michigan. My pack weight varies considerably but my base weight is below 18 lb (8 kg). I am primarily a Tarptent camper who averages more than 50 nights a year backpacking in a huge variety of weather conditions including relentless rain, wet snow and sub-zero temps.

Initial Report: 
August 14, 2020

 Product Information

 WB Ventures, LLC; website:
Product Willow Balm Pain Relieving Cream
Size (Manufacturer's stats)
3.5 fl oz (104 ml)
White willow bark, helichrysum plus other ingredients listed below
Weight as measured by tester
4.1 oz/116 g (tube with contents)
 Cost $10. US
Willow Balm
Initial Impressions and Product Description 

I received a large tube of Nature's Willow Pain Relieving Cream as well as two individual sample sizes of the product. A small tube of Bug Bite Balm and a product patch was also included. The tube of pain relieving cream is quite large measuring about 6.25 in (16 cm) length and over 2.25 in (6 cm) wide. It contains 3.5 fl oz (104 ml) of cream as measured by the manufacturer. I will likely take the whole tube on shorter trips because I have the room to do so, but the large size of it will have me transferring some of it to a smaller container for lengthy trips (just don't have enough room for the whole thing).

The Pain Relieving Cream is made with white willow bark and helichrysum. The active ingredient in the willow bark is called salicin and when used the body converts that into salicylic acid which works similarly to aspirin according to the manufacturer. Helichrysum is a natural essential oil that reportedly is anti-inflammatory and aids bruising and pain relief by lowering blood pressure to lower inflammation. The cream is touted to be for back pain, arthritis, sore muscles and joints. At my age I have all of those ailments! There are a lot of other botanical ingredients too, besides the two aforementioned: camphor, eucalyptus oil, geranium oil and lavender oil.

Additional ingredients include almond oil, caprylyl glycol, cetearyl alcohol, cetereth, cetyl alcohol, glycol monostearate, isopropyl palmitate, jojoba seed oil, mineral oil, phenoxy ethanol, propylene glycol, stearic acid, stearyl alcohol, and water. Wow, I won't pretend to know much about many of these but hopefully they are there for a purpose.

I did try the cream on the back of my neck which has been bothering me when I use a computer. It may stem from an incident backpacking when I fell on my face a month ago. Lots of jarring occurred. After a few minutes of applying the cream a nice kind of tingly sensation was felt on my neck. It did feel better than before I applied it; at least for awhile. It also smells good!


The Willow's Balm Pain Relieving Cream looks to be an interesting product that may help some of my discomfort after backpacking and other activities.

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Long Term Report:
November 22, 2020

USA Locations and Conditions


During the Long Term test period I spent 40 days backpacking as well as a host of other additional activities. All trips were in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and the state of Minnesota, USA. Elevation ranged from above 600 ft (180 m) to almost 2000 ft (610 m). 

Trip Talk
During the test period I was able to use the Willow Balm Pain Relieving Creme a lot. I spent 40 days backpacking during this time frame as well as many day hikes, mountain bike rides, kayaking, canoeing and cross country skiing (six times already early season). The activities resulted in my fair share of discomfort. My favorite use of the product has been for many low-grade headaches. They are the type of headache that I have often and mostly I attribute it to seasonal allergies. Sometimes I will take an over-the-counter medication but I found that applying a nice amount of the cream to my forehead helped alleviate the discomfort. Love the cooling sensation followed by relief.

During my first trip I went mountain biking and kayaking for four days. I don't do either of these sports very often so I was sore. I used the Willow Balm on my shoulders and knees and felt some relief. I also used the bug balm since I got bitten several times by unknown insects probably mosquitoes. I have also used the balm for my back, hands, neck and lower legs. The latter often aches after I do many miles of backpacking. On all of these trips I just carried the tube provided, except for one of my longer trips where I carried the two individual sample packs to save space. Even though I know that an individual-use pack is not environmentally friendly I think they would be great for backpacking trips. Of course I can always put some of the creme from the bigger tube into something smaller too.

I was also able to use the bug balm well into the fall months. Lots of mosquitoes this year with all the warm weather. Also got bitten by a bee. The most unusual usage for me was using it after an annual flu shot. I always have a painful reaction to immunizations and the area reddens and becomes hard and sore. I thought I would try the cream and it offered relief...I will take it!
The creme was easy to use even when it got cold (easy to spread). It is non-greasy so I didn't notice any residue on my clothing or pillow when I slept at night. Even though the creme has a smell, it is pleasant and it didn't annoy me. I say this rather favorably as I normally don't like any scented items and quite frankly don't usually purchase anything that is scented. This would be an exception in the future.




  • Many botanical ingredients
  • Packable
  • Pleasant smell


  • None

Tester Remarks 

Thanks to WBVentures, LLC and for this opportunity to test the Pain Relieving Cream. This concludes the test series.

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Read more reviews of WB Ventures, LLC gear
Read more gear reviews by Gail Staisil

Reviews > Health & Safety > Pain Relievers > Natures Willow Balm > Test Report by Gail Staisil

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