Many people are familiar with the pain-relieving ingredient acetaminophen as it is a common pain-relieving agent used by a large majority of people. Other pain-relieving active ingredients like trolamine salicylate are less commonly known but are also an option more people should be familiar with. 

The overprescribing of pain killers in recent decades has facilitated the current opioid crisis in the United States. To counteract this, when possible, more and more healthcare providers are opting to have their patients choose over the counter pain relief options rather than opioid-based pain relief drugs. 

A great way to be an active participant in your own health is to become educated on the different over the counter ingredients available to you for pain relief. This article will focus on trolamine salicylate and what it is, what it is used for, its effectiveness, what it can be paired with, and its side effects. With this knowledge, you will be better able to decide if trolamine salicylate is right for your pain relief needs. 

What is it?

The first question that comes to anyone’s mind when they are exposed to an unfamiliar ingredient is “what is it?” 

In the case of trolamine salicylate, “it” is the result of mixing triethanolamine with salicylic acid. Triethanolamine is a commonly used pH adjuster for cosmetics and other products and salicylic acid is a well-known skincare ingredient that helps combat acne. When combined, the resulting trolamine salicylate is able to provide topical pain relief. The compound forms a salt in its pure form and can be added to creams and other mixtures to allow the salt to be administered and absorbed into the skin.

In addition to being utilized as topical pain relief, trolamine salicylate has been found to provide UVB radiation protection. Because of this quality, trolamine salicylate can be found in smaller concentrations in some sunscreens on the market. 

In short, trolamine salicylate is a temporary pain reliever and UVB-protecting ingredient that is derived from triethanolamine and salicylic acid. 

What is it used for?

As described above, trolamine salicylate is an ingredient that is commonly utilized in topical pain relievers and in some sun screens. Below is a breakdown of the different uses for trolamine salicylate.

Back Pain

Trolamine salicylate is a great method for achieving temporary back pain relief. Back pain is affecting more and more people each year as a sedentary lifestyle becomes more normal for many. With less use of your back, the muscles can become weak and become more sensitive to being strained. Back pain can also occur when you are completing a difficult or physically demanding task such as lifting a heavy object. If you are not using proper body mechanics, you can easily “throw out” your back resulting in acute back pain. 

Whether your back pain is chronic or acute, trolamine salicylate can work at trying to offer temporary pain relief, especially when caused by inflammation. 

For the back, the best method of applying trolamine salicylate is with a pain relief cream or gel because it can easily be applied on a large area or targeted to the specific area that is causing you discomfort.


Sprains can be incredibly painful and can severely impact your day to day life depending on the location and severity. A sprain is caused by the overstretching or partial tearing of the ligaments across a joint. 

Responsible for holding a joint together, ligaments are a crucial component of the body and when they are injured it can be quite the ordeal. 

While trolamine salicylate is not able to help heal an injured ligament, it can be utilized to temporarily relieve the pain of the injury. Decreasing pain is ideal while recovering because it allows you to have a more comfortable recovery.


Strains are an injury that is commonly confused with sprains, but they really are a separate kind of injury. A strain is a result of the tearing of muscle or tendon tissues. Muscles and tendons are the tissues responsible for the movement of the body and when they are injured it can decrease your ability to use them. 

Not only can a strain result in a temporarily reduced range of motion, but it can also be painful as inflammation of the area strikes. Trolamine salicylate is able to achieve fast-acting relief for muscle or tendon strains by temporarily easing pains and stiffness. 

Keeping a jar of Hempvana pain relief cream in your gym bag is a great way to be prepared for any accident that comes your way. With added hemp seed extract, Hempvana pain relief cream with trolamine salicylate is a great addition to your first aid arsenal. 


Arthritis is an inflammation of the joint and can be caused by an autoimmune condition, uric acid crystals, or natural wear and tear. This inflammation of the joints can cause any movement of the joints to be painful, making everyday tasks a struggle. 

Trolamine salicylate is an excellent ingredient for temporarily soothing pains caused by arthritis because in a cream formula, it can be applied directly to the affected joint, even into the specific area. Other arthritis treatments can be invasive such as cortisone injections into the joint itself, but trolamine salicylate creams can be a great first line of defense in helping to temporarily reduce the pain and discomfort associated with many types of arthritis. 

Is it effective?

The next reasonable question you may be asking yourself is how effective is trolamine salicylate in reducing pain? 

According to a study, trolamine salicylate was shown to be effective in reducing pain in osteoarthritis patients. The experiment had over 80 patients in total and utilized a placebo group to compare the perception of pain with and without utilizing trolamine salicylate topicals. 

This along with many other studies throughout the years has solidified trolamine salicylate as a potential topical pain relief option for muscle and joint pain. 

What can it be paired with?

Trolamine salicylate in its pure form is a salt. Since the ingredient is a salt, it can easily be added to creams, lotions, and other mixtures to create the perfect concoction. The most advantageous ingredients to pair with trolamine salicylate are ingredients that boost skin health and add moisture to the skin. 

Below is a breakdown of the best additives for a trolamine salicylate cream:

  • Hemp Seed Extract – Hemp seed extract is an oil that is derived from the seeds of the hemp plant. The oil is rich in natural moisturizing and skin-enhancing nutrients. Utilized by many holistic medicines, hemp seed oil could be a great additive for a trolamine salicylate topical cream. In fact, Hempvana Platinum is fortified with 4x the hemp seed extract, giving your skin a premium moisturizing experience. 
  • Turmeric – Turmeric is a great additive for a trolamine salicylate topical because it acts as a sidekick. Turmeric contains curcumin, which can provide additional soothing benefits. Both curcumin and trolamine salicylate are able to work side by side to temporarily reduce inflammation. Having a topical pain relief cream like Hempvana Gold with both ingredients is a sure way to fight inflammation and provide the optimum temporary targeted pain relief that trolamine salicylate can offer. 
  • Aloe – Aloe has been used for centuries for its cooling, hydrating, and soothing properties. Adding aloe to a topical pain relief cream is like adding the cherry on top. Much like turmeric, aloe is able to provide many benefits right alongside the active ingredient. 

Side Effects

Because trolamine salicylate is a topical pain reliever ingredient, it does not have as many side effects as other pain relief options. Topicals typically have fewer side effects because they are only utilized in a small portion outside of the body where other pain relief options like pills cause systemic changes in the body. 

The majority of side effects of trolamine salicylate are caused by allergic reactions to the ingredient or other ingredients within the cream. This can result in contact dermatitis. This side effect is typically not very severe and if it does occur, you can just stop utilizing the topical.

A great way to see if you have a reaction is to utilize a test spot where you apply a very small portion of the topical to your body and wait for any adverse reaction. This ensures that you are aware of any allergies before you spread them on larger areas of skin which could cause more discomfort. 


In conclusion, trolamine salicylate is the active ingredient found in some topical pain relievers. With minimal side effects and the ability to treat a wide variety of muscle and joint pains, trolamine salicylate is a great over the counter pain relief option to have on hand.