Isn’t she just utterly and completely marvelous? Go on, go and google image her, before you come back to read about her fabulousness. Hello again, do feel free to proceed, once you’ve picked up your jaw from the floor.
At 83 years old, Carmen Dell’Orefice is often billed as the world’s oldest working model, and it’s clear why her career has enjoyed such longevity in an industry that’s notoriously fickle. I recently came across Carmen in a Rolex advert, and it reminded me of an article I read in a weekend paper a few years back (2008!) where she mentioned the product she attributed to, for her glowing skin.

And that product, is Bag Balm.

In fact, her big beauty secret boils down to nothing more complex than a unpromising-sounding product called Bag Balm, an ointment developed by a dairy farmer for softening cow teats. Now it’s mainly used for equine purposes, ‘and if it’s good enough for horses, it’s good enough for me.’ She says it’s like Elizabeth Arden’s cultish Eight Hour Cream, but a fraction of the price.”

Now, I had used Elizabeth Arden’s Eight Hour Cream before -though impressed with how it worked on my skin and its multitude of uses, the smell which i’d describe as damp, was off-putting to say the east. Bag Balm on the other hand, was nothing I had ever heard of before here in England, but with Ms Dell’Orefice’s endorsement, I eagerly bought a tin online.

Bag Balm originates from Vermont, USA and was initially developed in 1899 to treat abrasions of farm yard animals, until that is, when the farmers who applied the salve to their animals, noticed that their hands became remarkably soft, and the rest is history. The formulation is composed of primarily three ingredients: lanolin, an effective moisturiser, petrolatum, and hydroxyquinoline sulfate, which is known to be a very good antibiotic.

When I first opened the tin, I immediately noticed a strong medicinal smell, though not as unpleasant (in my opinion!) or as strong as the Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream when applied. The texture as you would expect for something petrolatum based, is akin to vaseline, though ever so slightly thicker. The best thing about this product though, is that I can personally vouch for Dell’Orefice’s claim that this is just like the Eight Hour Cream – only this is cheaper, milder in scent, and you get more of it!

It helps to relieve chapped, scratched, windburned or sunburned skin anywhere on the body, and when applied to cuts, scrapes, or abrasions, it heals the skin fast. A great bonus about this product is that it is a fantastic all rounder for all the family – including your pets! I personally spread a very thin layer on any abrasions and get visible results by the next day, and even though I have oily skin, this is great for the winter time when my cheeks become dry and windburnt – again, just apply a thin layer and your problem is virtually solved.

I highly recommend this not only as a replacement for Elizabeth Arden’s Eight Hour Cream, but as a bathroom cabinet staple that everyone should have at hand, as it can be used for just about any minor skin problem you have – having said that, there have also been favourable reviews for it being used to relieve symptoms of psoriasis!
I paid about £6 for 10 ounces of this stuff, so it’s a terrific buy. If it’s good enough for Carmen Dell’Orefice, it’s good enough for me. I urge you all to try this miraculous salve for yourself.


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