This Balm Is Over 90 Years Old, and Everyone I Know Still Loves It

Although it was launched way back in 1930, Elizabeth Arden's Eight Hour Cream remains a must-have beauty product amongst makeup artistscelebrities and stylish people alike. The packaging might have changed over the years, with limited-edition releases continuing to go down a storm with Arden devotees, but there's no doubt that this apricot-coloured balm remains continually popular. In fact, a tube is sold every 30 seconds worldwide. So after more than 90 years in existence, what exactly has enabled this unassuming product to stand the test of time?

Why Elizabeth Arden's Eight Hour Cream Has Cult Status



Created by Elizabeth Arden herself, the balm is a blend of vitamin E and petrolatum that was specially created to soothe the skin of clients at her Red Door salon in New York. In line with Arden's ethos on all things beauty, it was specially formulated to actually do good to the skin—healing it from the outside rather than just masking the problem like many other cosmetics at the time. Legend has it that the name came about when one of Arden's regular clients used the balm to treat her child's grazed knee. Eight hours later, the skin was healed, Arden had a name for her product and a beauty best seller was born.

Whether you buy the anecdote behind the ointment or not, there's no disputing that this restorative balm has been used to troubleshoot a multitude of beauty qualms since then. Arden even used it to soothe her thoroughbred horses' legs in the '50s and remarked on how it worked double duty by caring for her hands at the same time. Today, you'll likely find that most women have owned a tube of this all-purpose beauty balm at some point in their lives. Victoria Beckham swears by it post-flight for combating dehydrated skin, while Reese Witherspoon's makeup artist, Molly Stern, uses it on the actress as a pre-shoot moisturiser.

Of course, it's not just the A-list who adore it. Make like Scandi girls and use it to add a sheen to bare lips (and soothe any dryness at the same time), or press it into your cuticles to add a little polish to bare nails. Arden's iconic balm is essential in every backstage kit for makeup artists, too. Smooth a small amount through your brows for a laid-back approach to grooming, or pat it onto your eyelids for a cool glossy look.

Since it launched, the Eight Hour Cream franchise has expanded to include sun protection, portable pots, and scent-free takes on the much-loved formula. Scroll down to see our favourites, new and old.

Launched in 2015, this viscous take on the cult balm intensely hydrates your face, body and hair, making for serious amounts of glow.

Formulated specifically for lips, this handbag-friendly stick boasts the same ingredients as the classic Eight Hour Cream. Apply to cheekbones for a subtle, on-the-go highlight.

The one beauty secret that all fashion people swear by is SPF. This one launched in 2011 and contains the same skin-soothing benefits of the original balm alongside SPF 50 for UV protection.

This intensive hand treatment soothes chapped, dry skin in an instant without leaving a greasy film.

This refreshing face mist isn't just nourishing; it's also jam-packed with antioxidants to help boost glow and protect skin against harmful aggressors. 

Show scaly limbs some TLC with this super-nourishing body cream. It leaves skin soft, supple and glowing.

If your lips are really suffering in the dry winter climate, this is basically guaranteed to help. It has a slight gloss to it, which leaves lips looking full and plump, but most importantly, it soothes and softens chapped skin in seconds.