For longer days in the saddle, chamois cream can literally save your butt. There are plenty of embrocation creams to choose from though, so we put six to the test.
Chamois Butt’r Original
Chamois Butt’r chamois cream Immediate Media
- £13 (227g) / $18 (235ml / 8 fl oz ) / $25
This cream is based on mineral oil and includes lanolin and aloe in its ingredients. We got a lot of mileage from this, it’s easy and hygienic to apply from the tube, is minimally perfumed and long lasting.
Also available in female-specific and cooling versions, but this is the crème de la crème of high-quality, budget-friendly creams.
Udderly Smooth chamois creme
Udderly Smooth chamois cream Immediate Media
- £9.99 (227g) / $8 (8oz ) / AU$15 ( 8oz )
Main ingredients, such as stearic acid, lanolin and the like, are joined here by shea butter too. The name stems from the fact that this was first developed for use on dairy cows. Don’t worry, it contains no ‘milk or bovine products’, but is a thick white cream, long lasting, that resembles Assos’s offering, but this’ll cost you less for a bigger tub.
Assos Chamois Creme
Assos Chamois Creme Immediate Media
- £13 (140ml) / $19 ( 140ml ) / AU$30 (140ml )
Widely available and well priced for Assos, this tried-and-tested chamois cream is popular. The present formula has little smell to it, just a touch of mint, and we found that a small amount of the thick white cream (or crème) went a long way, with the menthol giving it an initial cooling effect.
Assos also offers a women’s specific formulation, available to buy from Wiggle.
Muc-Off Luxury CC
Muc-Off Luxury CC Immediate Media
- £14 (100ml) / $15 (100ml ) / AU$26 ( 100ml )
This pleasant-smelling anti-bacterial cream contains aloe vera, witch hazel, shea butter and sunflower oil. We found this as good as any at keeping chafing at bay, even during a day-long ride.
While this is fairly expensive, it does double up as a moisturiser. Muc-Off’s R&D team has done a good job in diversifying.
Bikemonger Bum Butter
Bikemonger Bum Butter Immediate Media
- £18 (100g) / $25 ( 100ml ) / AU$33 ( 100ml )
Bikemonger’s made-in Dorset ‘Happy Bottom Bum Butter’ is vegan-friendly, made from ‘100 percent natural ingredients’, with a more ‘medicinal’ smell thanks to its use of clove oil.
It has a thick, Vaseline-like texture, takes a bit of massaging in but lasts the distance. The pot is recyclable too.
QM Pro Race
QM Pro Race Immediate Media
We feel that a tube is a more hygienic way to package chamois creams. Belgian company QM has developed its cream in the pro cycling world, and though the petroleum jelly, beeswax and shea butter cream is the thinnest here it covers well and lasts impressively. It does tingle a little at first when you apply it.