Carmex has been a trusted brand in lip balm for years. They carry a wide variety of lip care products, including the Carmex Cold Sore Treatment. Unlike their traditional lip balms, this treatment is designed not only to moisten and protect the lips but to speed up the healing process of a cold sore.

Additionally, this treatment helps to alleviate painful cold sore symptoms. If you’re prone to frequent flare-ups, you know getting to the bottom of cold sore side effects can be just as important as healing the blister itself.

This product is designed to work on contact to provide instant relief from cold sores. It contains a three-part formula that makes it stand out from the competition.

But, it isn’t always fair to judge a product based on the brand. Carmex is well known for lip care, but this is a relatively new addition to their line-up. Does it work as well as their lip balms and other preventative care products?

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Carmex Cold Sore Treatment Review

This review will focus on the Carmex Treatment. Because it contains a unique ‘TriPlex’ formula, we’ll answer questions about what that consists of, and how it works. With such a popular brand name, there are dozens of questions that could be associated with this product. This review will focus on some of the most hard-hitting of those questions. That way, you can determine whether this treatment option is the best one for your next cold sore outbreak.

How Does It Work?

The treatment works in three different ways. It is designed to reduce the appearance of your cold sore as it heals. This is due to their unique TriPlex formula. The formula promises to:

  • Work to relieve cold sore symptoms instantly
  • Relieve pain and itch
  • Minimize the overall appearance

The key active ingredient in this formula is Benzocaine (10%). This is a type of local anesthetic that helps to numb the area of your cold sore instantly. Some of the most common symptoms of a blister, like redness, itching, and irritation, can be ‘frozen’ right away once benzocaine touches the affected area.

Another popular cold sore product that features Benzocaine is Orajel Single Dose. If you only want to apply a treatment solution once, you might want to look at Orajel as an option.

Not only does this formula help to treat symptoms immediately, but it can speed up the healing time. If you aren’t itching your blister or touching it frequently, a cold sore can heal naturally on its own.

Other ingredients help to cover the sore itself. Aside from pain, the embarrassment of a fever blister can be the worst part about a flare-up for many people. While it will eventually heal on its own, being able to ‘hide’ it throughout that process can make a big difference. Covering a blister with makeup isn’t always safe, and can cause the blister to become infected. When you make it less visible with this type of medication, you’re benefitting in more ways than one.

How Should It Be Applied?

If you’re used to other balms by Carmex, you’ll be happy to know it’s almost just as easy to apply this cold sore treatment. It comes in a small tube that can be used throughout a cold sore. It is a thick white cream but once you rub it in you will hardly notice it. When used properly, you’ll notice a change in your symptoms right away. Follow these simple steps for fast relief:

  1. Gently squeeze a small amount of the medication from the tube. You can apply it directly to the affected area. However, to reduce the risk of contamination and spreading, it’s better to apply a small amount to your finger and rub it onto the blister.
  2. Completely coat the affected area with the medication.
  3. Wash your hands immediately after applying.
  4. Within a matter of minutes, you should feel relief from irritation and itching.

The medication will last for hours to alleviate pain. You can continue to use it as-needed to keep irritation away. It is safe to apply it up to four times a day. You only need a very small amount of the medication for each application. One tube can last through several different cold sore flare ups.

How Long Will It Take to Work?

There are two different answers to this question. When it comes to alleviating pain and itching, this cold sore treatment will work right away. It may wear off every few hours. But, it can be reapplied several times a day, so you never have to experience irritation for long. It will also help to conceal your cold sore quickly.

But, when it comes to the healing of the cold sore itself, you probably won’t notice much of a difference. Cold sores can take anywhere from ten days to several weeks to fully heal. This particular solution isn’t designed to speed up that natural process. It just makes it easier to handle no matter how long it takes to go away completely.

Are There Any Side Effects?

The Carmex formula is designed to let your cold sore heal naturally. However, it doesn’t contain completely natural ingredients. Some people may be more sensitive to benzocaine than others, which can cause mild irritation. Stop use immediately if you experience the following, or it gets worse:

  • Swelling
  • Rash
  • Fever
  • Pain

Additionally, if you don’t see any results within seven days, stop using the product and contact your doctor. Children under the age of two shouldn’t use this product without clearance from a physician first.

Is It Worth the Price Tag?

It’s fair to think that the higher cost of this Carmex solution is due to the popularity of the brand name. What’s more important to know is whether or not the product works and lives up to its price tag.

This treatment comes in a very small tube and is more costly than some of its competitors. But, that doesn’t mean it has a low value. First, only a drop is needed at a time for it to be effective. As stated above, you can get multiple uses out of just one tube.

Another factor that adds to its value is its portability. Cold sores are best treated when they are just beginning. The first symptoms usually include things like tingling or itching around the mouth area. Because this treatment is so compact and portable, you can use it right away. This can help to ensure you won’t have to deal with pain and irritation for very long.

One thing this treatment doesn’t do is speed up healing time on its own. The formula is designed to hide the sore and treat symptoms. But, in doing that, it’s likely that you won’t touch the blister as much. As a result, it will be less irritated and may go away faster anyway.

What Are the Advantages & Disadvantages?

You can find this creme almost anywhere, and it consistently gets great reviews. But, it may not be the best solution for everyone. There are dozens of cold sore treatment options on the market. It can be tempting to choose a product because of the name, but knowing the strengths and weaknesses can make your decision easier. Everyone can react to treatments differently. So, what are some of the biggest pros and cons?


  • Reduces pain, itching, and irritation almost immediately
  • Easy to use
  • Portable and easy to travel with
  • Helps to conceal unsightly blisters


  • Doesn’t speed up cold sore healing time on its own
  • More expensive than some competitors

If your biggest problem with cold sores is the symptoms that go along with them, this is a great treatment to consider. It’s fast-acting and can get rid of pain and itching in a matter of minutes. But, if you want to get rid of the blister itself faster, a different treatment option may be better for you.

Will Carmex Cold Sore Treatment Reduce Outbreaks?

When choosing a fever blister treatment, consider what bothers you most about an outbreak. The treatment you choose should be based on those factors. If you’re someone who is prone to frequent flare-ups, a product that can potentially stop a cold sore before it starts might be the best solution. This treatment won’t reduce the frequency of flare-ups. It won’t even speed up the time it takes for a blister to heal on its own.

However, if symptoms like redness, swelling, and itching ruin your life when you’re going through a flare-up, this type of treatment solution could be the best for you. It’s not enough to trust a product based on brand name alone. Still, Carmex has proven once again with this treatment that they know what they’re doing when it comes to lip care.

We hope this Carmex review has given you some insight into how you can find fast relief from a fever blister. Thanks to three useful healing ingredients, the Carmex for Cold Sores should be considered if you’re tired of dealing with pain and itchy blisters.

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Our Verdict

Convenience:4 out of 5 stars (4.0 / 5)
Speed:3.5 out of 5 stars (3.5 / 5)
Results:4 out of 5 stars (4.0 / 5)
Value:4 out of 5 stars (4.0 / 5)
Average:3.9 out of 5 stars (3.9 / 5)

Last update on 2024-06-24 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API