Product Review: Sombra Gel

November 3, 2015



Sombra natural pain relieving gel smells as nice as it feels. It's orange-citrus aroma is certainly unique in the market when it comes to menthol-based topical choices. 


Sombra Natural Pain Relieving Gel has been produced by Sombra Professional Therapy Products since 1974. They company believes in natural ingredients as well as animal-free testing.


There are various application types to choose from, including a roll-on product. The company has two main lines of topical goos: the Warm Therapy (left) and Cool Therapy (right) lines.  However, considering their active ingredients and many of their inactive ingredients are very similar, this post will be a write up on both.




This an organic compound is made synthetically or obtained from mint oils. It's present in both the Warm Therapy (3%) and Cold Therapy (6%) products.


Menthol enhances cooling sensations via stimulating the cold-sensitive transient receptor potential channel melastatin 8 (TRPM8) which is responsible for the well-known cooling sensation it provokes when inhaled, eaten, or applied to the skin. 


It also has weak analgesic (pain-killing) effects due to its selective activation of our κ-opioid receptor. This protein mediates many effects including changing our perception of pain, consciousness, motor control, and mood.  




Camphor is present in Warm Therapy (3%) product. This waxy solid has a strong aromatic odor. It is found in the wood of the evergreen tree Cinnamomum camphora; Dryobalanops aromatica; Ocotea usambarensis; and dried rosemary leaves (Rosmarinus officinalis). It is used primarily for its scent. Additionally, it's easily absorbed through skin and produces a cool-feeling like menthol. 




I found an established body of research that may suggest the use of menthol for mild pain relief. Given the very low risk and very limited side effects, it would seem worth a try for individuals seeking a complementary and/or off-the-shelf product for pain relief.


You can purchase it on Amazon: the gel or roll-on. If you get really into the stuff, you can also purchase a 32oz pump of the stuff







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