Gold Bond friction defense review
Dear Izzy, Max, and Kate,
I learned early on that nothing makes a long race go from “merely uncomfortable” to “What was I thinking? I’m never doing this again” faster than blisters…and (ahem) chaffing. Yeah, it can be bad. Really bad.
I forgot to use any anti chaffing products at Boulder 70.3 last year. Half way through the run course I felt like I was stepping on a rock with both feet with every step. They weren’t rocks. They were giant blisters on both insteps. Ouch. And my toes were worse. It was a mess. An ugly – seriously deformed looking – mess. Last time I’ll make that mistake.
Recently I had the chance to try Gold Bond’s new friction defense. I’ve been a fan of their body lotion after swimming and on cold weather bike rides for a long time, so I was eager to try the new “friction defense” product. Anything to save me from that Boulder pain again.
There are a few products on the market that prevent chaffing during exercise, but the thing that sets Gold Bond Friction Defense apart is its ability to soothe and condition the skin as it also protects. That’s the Aloe, Ginger Root, and Vitamin E.
I tested the Gold Bond product in a few different workouts common for triathletes: a long run, a long ride, and a swim in my wetsuit. I also tested the product during the Chattanooga Waterfront Triathlon a couple of weeks ago.
THE RUN TEST:
Most competitive triathletes race without socks to save time, so preventing blisters on your feet is important. I covered my toes top and bottom, my insteps, and the back of my heels with the product.
I also covered my chest where my tri top meets my under arms. And, um, my nipples. You’ve seen those pictures of marathon runners with bloody shirts. Been there. No fun.
Gold Bond Friction Defense worked great. My feet stayed blister free without feeling slippery in my shoes and my nipples stayed … “normal”, I guess. No rawness and stained tri top.
THE BIKE TEST:
So, again, its delicate to talk about applying friction defense products, but this stuff is a fact of life for triathletes. You sit on a tiny bike seat. For hours on end. While pumping your legs up and down. There’s going to be friction in the groin area. There, I said it. There are some not-so-nice names for it, but I’ll just call it saddle sores. They aren’t fun. A bad saddle sore feels like sitting on a pebble with a wasp stinger in it. So, you need something to keep chaffing and friction at bay during the long hours on that narrow seat.
I applied Gold Bond Friction Defense to the chamois pad of my bib shorts during my long ride and to the chamois of my tri shorts on race day. I did 45 miles with no problems on my long ride and 26 miles in wet tri shorts on race day. Again, the product worked as advertised. No problems to report.
During spring and fall races triathletes typically race the swim leg in wetsuits. Unless you’ve done a race in a wetsuit you don’t know the pitfalls of not applying an anti-chaffing product. It’s called the “wetsuit hicky”. It’s ugly. Like a huge hicky on the back of your neck and throat where the neoprene suit rubs against you during a 30 minute -1:15 long swim. Once you’re on the bike and run the sweat runs into that hicky and you’ve got some serious pain going on. Best to avoid that.
I applied Gold Bond Friction Defense liberally to the back and front of my neck and upper chest. This allowed the wetsuit to glide with each stroke rather than pulling at my wet skin, creating a hicky effect. The Gold Bond stick worked great here and I had no discomfort around my neck while in the water or afterwards.
It’s also a good idea to put this product in a few other places for the swim. I applied it to my wrists, ankles/calves, and hips. This allowed me to remove the wetsuit quickly in transition (simulated since Chattanooga wasn’t wetsuit legal).
In conclusion, Gold Bond Friction Defense is the best product I’ve used for three reasons:
1. It prevents chaffing and blisters as well or better than competitive brands
2. It provides skin conditioning while other products do not
3. It costs 1/3 of what it’s top competitor costs
You can learn more about Gold Bond Friction Defense HERE.
* I was given the product and compensated for this review. However, my opinions are my own.