Queenslander Magic

G’day mate! Sorry, couldn’t resist. This post is about a true-blue Aussie cult product, of which there are few, that I’ve been requesting off my mother by the bucket load. Well, not quite. One tiny tube lasts forever so actually I’ve just asked for a few tubes here and there, but you get the idea.

Lucas’ Papaw Ointment is a multipurpose ‘miracle’ potion that is primarily made from the humble papaya fruit, with a base of petroleum jelly. Papaw means papaya y’see. Here’s the little known fact: Papaya has antiseptic properties.

Actually it’s fermented papaya but I didn’t want to put you all off straight away. It’s not gross, I promise.

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Papaw Ointment has been made by Lucas Remedies in Brisbane, Australia for over 80 years. Dr Lucas wrote in his 1906 Handbook that he fully believed that the papaw was the finest antiseptic yet discovered. As such it is recommended that Papaw Ointment be used for: *deep intake of breath* Abscesses, Boils, Bruises, Burns, Carbuncles, Chafing, Cuts, Cysts, Dry & Cracked skin on hands & feet, Gravel rash, Heat rash, Insect stings, Mosquito and other bites, Open wounds, Pimples, Scalds, Scars, Sunburn , Swelling associated with injury, Splinters & thorns, Nappy Rash, Eczema and Psoriasis.


In addition to this Papaw is supposed to be beneficial in helping with stretch marks (in much the same way Bio Oil does), working wonders on your poor neglected cuticles, rubbed into the face after unfortunate stubble rash from snogging a semi-beardy man’s face off, and is great used as a lip balm. Particularly an overnight lipbalm.

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I’ve been using it on a small silvery scar just between my eyebrows, from running into a nail sticking out of a wooden beam as a child (it’s both as terrible and as stupid as it sounds), it’s barely noticeable but definitely something I’m conscious of so anything that helps ease it would be fantastic. As of yet I’m not sure if it’s me just willing it to work or whether it’s actually making a difference so I’ll get back to you on that one. It DOES however make lips super mega ultra soft. I’ve been applying it before bed and waking up the next day with such smooth lips. Aboriginal witchcraft, I’m sure of it.

Of course, you’ll have to ignore the packaging. I cannot lie, it’s not pretty. Basic isn’t quite the word. But it’s easily overlooked, and somehow makes the product more appealing to me. It’s not trying too hard to get you to like it. It’s quietly confident that it’s a good product and therefore gives no thought to trivial things like the mere colour of the tube.

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What else? It costs practically nothing if you buy it in pharmacies in Oz. Especially if you get your mum to pay for it. It can be bought online in the UK but expect to pay a premium for it. Save a little extra and you can probably jet off down under and pick it up yourself. Alternatively I’m sure my mum could be coerced into sending a crate of the stuff over. Probably.

The only real sticking point seems to be the smell. Now, I don’t find it offensive at all, I can barely smell anything on it actually. Maybe a faint nutty, vanillary, fruity sort of smell. I assume that’s the fermented papaya. It’s not a bad smell as far as I can tell. Maybe if you’re slathering heaps of the stuff on it’ll be more obvious. But I do know that for a lot of people the smell is enough to put them off using the product but I’ve not been moved so strongly myself. I think it’s quite pleasent. In fact I recently spread the stuff all over my nose to try and calm down a spot/pores/redness situation 30minutes before a brunch date and couldnt honestly say I noticed any smell at all. It worked by the way, my nose was perfectly normal looking by the time I met said date. Either that or he was too polite to say anything about my rudolf-esque appearence. But I think it was the Papaw. Bloomin’ great stuff.

The only real worry is running out before my next air mail package arrives…

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