Bonnie’s Balms — Healing Salve — 2 oz

Rated 4.50 out of 5 based on 2 customer ratings
(2 customer reviews)


In prolonged wet conditions, my feet will get wet. I reduce the devastating effects and aftermath of wet feet (e.g. like pruning, blistering, soreness, and cracking) using Bonnie’s Balms Climbers Salve. It is a critical part of my footwear kit.

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Bonnie’s Balm Healing Salve is one way that I reduce and minimize the effects of wet feet. Read this blog post for a fuller explanation.

How Healing Salve works

Healing Salve will reduce—but not entirely eliminate—the effects and aftermath of wet feet, specifically by:

  • Minimizing the amount of moisture that the outer layer of skin will absorb, thereby reducing the severity of the maceration/pruning. The Salve does not seem to clog pores, however, which would cause other problems.
  • Keeping the skin moisturized, thereby minimizing the likelihood that the skin will crack as it dries out.

How to apply Healing Salve for best results

Apply Healing Salve before your feet get wet, ideally hours before. If you apply it after your feet are wet, or immediately before they get wet, the effectiveness is very limited. Normally, applying Climbers Salve is one of my nighttime housekeeping chores, along with looking at tomorrow’s maps and separating out tomorrow’s daytime food.

  1. After drying my feet thoroughly, perhaps with the help of a warm fire, I coat the bottom of my feet with Healing Salve and rub it in, paying special attention to the rim of my heel and my forefoot, which seem to suffer the worst when wet.
  2. Once the Healing Salve has been rubbed in, I put on a dry and clean sock, and go to bed. I don’t spend much time in camp—if you do, then protect your dry and now-treated feet from your (potentially) wet shoes using a bread bag or other waterproof liner.
  3. In the morning, and sometimes even in the middle of the night, I check my feet to determine if they need another coating of Healing Salve. If my feet still feel waxy, then they don’t. If they are dry again, which indicates that all of the Climbers Salve was absorbed, then I reapply.

2 reviews for Bonnie’s Balms — Healing Salve — 2 oz

  1. Rated 4 out of 5

    After reading your night time rituals, which match mine, and with many of the same hiking philosophies/styles/gear choices/types of hikes, etc as you, and after never having tried Bonnie’s Climbers Balm, I tried it to compare it to Bert’s Bees Res-Q- Ointment, which I take on hikes in .6 oz cans. I find the performance to be much the same for the goals we both share – preventing pruning, blistering, soreness, and cracking . Although the Res-Q- Ointment is a little “wetter” “greasier.” But, like you, a clean sock goes over it after I apply these products.

    I find these herbal products to have some, but limited, insect repellency as well. Although nowhere near as effective as an insect repellent based on a one product verse product comparison(such as compared to DEET), they CAN be part of a multi product multi technique effective insect repellent approach for the more common biting insects encountered in the U.S. It’s an approach that’s often not considered in most insect repellent effectiveness studies! I put that out there for others who might want to pursue alternative approaches.

  2. Rated 5 out of 5

    I recently revamped some of my gear and techniques, leading to a change in foot care. No matter the boot or sock, I’ve always had problems with sweaty feet leading to wet socks and maceration, but no more. My friends had to tape up their feet, but I returned from a week of sweaty backpacking in the Chihuahuan Desert without experiencing a single hot spot or blister. Even with moist socks at the end of the day, my feet felt fine; easily the best they’ve ever felt after hard use.

    I credit a switch to trail runners for some of the improvement, but an evening rubdown with Bonnie’s Balms Climbers Salve seemed to have as much impact. I ordered from Andrew and he delivered promptly. I highly recommend both the product and seller.

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