Why Do MMA Fighters Put Vaseline? – A Comprehensive Answer Here

If you are a fan of MMA fighting sessions, you must be no stranger to its brutality. The kicks and punches that fighters have to endure during each round are no joke. Hence, it is common for cutmen to apply a thick coat of Vaseline on the most visible areas of an MMA fighter’s face.

So, why do MMA fighters put Vaseline on before jumping at each other? The answer to this nagging question will be addressed right below!

Why Do MMA Fighters Put Vaseline On Before Fighting?

MMA fighters put Vaseline on their faces before entering the ring for two reasons. Firstly, they want to protect themselves from being severely injured by their competitors. Secondly, Vaseline will help keep the facial skin hydrated and not affected by excessive sweating.

But why can Vaseline achieve such goals?

Vaseline – also known as petroleum jelly – is a substance best known for its ability to retain moisture. When smeared on a surface, Vaseline clings firmly, creating a sticky area. 

Therefore, if a punch is landed right on an MMA fighter’s nose, cheeks, forehead, or eyebags, the impact tends to be minimal. 

Furthermore, Vaseline helps preserve the skin in its original conditions. By occluding the top layer, all matters cannot travel in or out. Thus, MMA fighters will not have to endure the discomfort of having sweats or having their visions blocked.

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How To Apply Vaseline On The Face

The magic of Vaseline will cease if you fail to spread it evenly and correctly. As a result, cutmen are fully responsible for taking care of Vaseline application. Do you know how it is performed? The detailed guide is as follows! 

  • Step 1: MMA fighters must clean their faces thoroughly and use a towel to remove excess water. This is because Vaseline blocks everything inside, both good stuff (moisture) and bad stuff (dirt, sebum, etc.) If their faces are greasy, Vaseline can cause skin problems later on.
  • Step 2: Once the fighters have washed their faces, it is time for Vaseline to kick in. Most people start with large areas such as the chin, the cheeks, and the forehead. Then, slowly work your way around more delicate areas like around the eyes and the nose. Be careful not to let Vaseline dip in your eyes, mouths, nostrils.
  • Step 3: If you are unsure about the results, use your fingers and gently tap on where Vaseline has been placed. If done properly, your fingertips will feel slightly gummy. Instead of sinking, they will bounce off the surface. 

If you are interested in having visual instructions on how to apply Vaseline, check out this Youtube video.


1. Do MMA fighters put Vaseline on their bodies?

No. The use of Vaseline is only allowed when it comes to protecting the face and preserving the visions. Putting it on the bodies makes direct contact too slippery and hard to control. 

Thus, MMA organizations prohibit Vaseline body application as a way to prevent cheating.

2.  Can Vaseline be used to treat wounds during MMA fighting?


Yes. If the breaks between each round are not enough for cutmen to handle open wounds properly, they will resort to Vaseline. It will help close off the wound temporarily, not letting sweat, dirt, or any other factors tamper with the injuries. 

Furthermore, the substance puts a stop to bleeding, giving MMA fighters a quick recovery.

That being said, Vaseline is available for treating facial wounds only. If the injuries happen to be on the bodies, then cutmen are forced to take proper medical measures.

3. What else is Vaseline used for?

Vaseline is a versatile product utilized in almost all facets of life.

Most people know of Vaseline as a healing balm. If they happen to burn or chafe their skin, timely Vaseline application will soothe the sore and speed up the recovery process.

In recent years, the beauty industry has started to take notice of Vaseline’s occlusive ability. Beauty bloggers and doctors recommend Vaseline to seal off the facial skin after moisturizing it, believing this will diminish the amount of water seeping through the skin surface. 

Some even use it directly on the lips, claiming that Vaseline smoothens the dryness, fills in the cracks, and makes their lips look plumper. 


Vaseline is also common as an aftercare treatment item when it comes to tattooing. As soon as the inking is done, tattoo artists will list Vaseline as a must-have ointment. Applying this substance frequently to the newly tattooed skin is crucial to reduce friction and lessen the pain. 

4. What are the side effects of Vaseline?

Vaseline is relatively safe to use. However, this does not mean that the product comes without any harm. Some have reported allergies to the substance, stating how swollen and itchy their skin feels. 

Sometimes, skin tenderness and redness may occur. If you spot any irregular reactions, stop using it altogether and check with your doctor. 

5. What are some alternatives to Vaseline?

If Vaseline does not sit well with your skin, there are several substances that serve the same purpose. These range from shea butter, cocoa butter, extra virgin olive oil, and unrefined coconut oil. 

Not only are these naturally extracted and sustainable, but they are also soft and soothing to the skin. Irritations are less likely to happen while the remedial effect remains the same.

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Now that you have finished this article, the question about why do MMA fighters put Vaseline on will no longer boggle you. Next time you drop by a boxing fight, do not be surprised when the participants have their faces covered in this sticky substance!

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