Your typical topical ointment is going to bring your skin relief. According to the box, the ointment soothes and comforts. It has been determined, however, that in order to reach the level of comfort, one must endure a few minutes of severe pain, even if the skin isn't broken. The main goal of Mentholatum ointment is to relieve muscle and joint pain. The ointment should not be used on broken skin in the first place. I would assume that it would feel no worse to the user if placed directly on an open wound. The presentation is enticing. As soon as you open the box, you will notice the smell of your typical vapourizing ointment. The smell is not bad at all. In fact, the smell alone may make you want to put the ointment onto your sore areas.
Here lies the problem. Sure, you can add the ointment, but you will not attain your relief instantly. Though the skin is not broken, there will be a similar pain. Imagine putting alcohol on a wound (remember, the Mentholatum ointment is not an anesthetic, so it should not be placed on wounds). Give the pain a minute to subside, and the soreness seems to go with it. The cream did seem to "relieve muscle aches and pains, " as the box suggests, though there is an unintended side effect.
Is the product recommended? Not likely. There are plently of creams on the market that have similar quality, but are not accompanied by this sharp, warm pain. I had no intention of buying IcyHot that day.