Wednesday 15 September 2010

Antistax Cooling Leg Gel

When I was heavily pregnant and my feet and legs started swelling up, my doctor told me to put my feet up. Literally. He explained that the puffiness and the feeling of heavy legs was caused by poor circulation and that by elevating my legs, I'd make it easier for my heart to pump the blood effectively around my body and stop it pooling in my feet and legs. Bleuurrggghhh ! It was all the excuse I needed to sit around with my feet propped up on a pillow for the last few weeks of pregnancy though !

Unfortunately, we can't always put our feet up when our legs start feeling heavy or puffy because it often happens when we're at work or on a long journey, on a train or aeroplane, when people would give us funny looks ! I know that after a long day in the classroom, I often have a feeling of heaviness in my legs but I just put it down to tiredness rather than circulation problems caused by standing and sitting around for several hours a day.

When Antistax contacted me to see if I'd like to test out their leg health products, I was therefore keen to see if they could make any difference. They have three different products in the range : Healthy Leg Capsules, Cooling Leg Spray and Cooling Leg Gel. I received a tube of gel to try out.

When I squeezed it out of the tube, I was surprised by the colour which is a reddish-brown. As the whole idea is that it gives your legs a cooling sensation, it felt strange to have a reddish coloured gel as that is a colour usually associated with heat ! Trying to ignore my subconscious telling me that red = heat, I smoothed some of the gel on to my legs, starting from the ankles and working up. It felt like a moisturising gel and instantly gave a sensation of coolness, although this happens whatever cream or gel I apply to my legs. Gently massaging the gel into my achey legs did feel really nice though and they did stop feeling so heavy - although, again, I don't know whether this was due to the gel or just the massaging !

I decided to look more closely at the Antistax website to see what they had to say. They explain, "Antistax now offers a Cooling Leg Gel which has a comforting, cooling and soothing effect on your legs. Antistax Cooling Leg Gel contains a special ingredient called Flaven. In combination with cooling and soothing agents it stimulates the microcirculation in your legs, when gently massaged onto the skin. Supported scientifically by experts at the Antistax® Leg Health Centre."

I decided to find out a bit more about Flaven too and found this explanation : "Antistax products are based on a unique and clinically proven red vine leaf extract which is known to contain a range of valuable substances, including our unique ingredient bio-active Flaven. Bio-active Flaven has been scientifically proven to help maintain healthy leg vein circulation, and reduce pain and swelling noticeably. It has a positive effect on the elasticity and density of vein walls, which is why it is used for treatment of heavy, achy and tired legs."

I also noticed on the tube that for an even more impressive feeling of coolness, you can keep the gel in the fridge before use. I haven't tried this but I can imagine how nice it must feel, especially in the hot summer months.

I've incorporated a quick leg rub with the Cooling Gel into my after-work wind-down routine when I get home and it's really relaxing, like slipping out of work shoes and putting on a comfy pair of slippers ! My legs do feel less heavy and, judging by the scientific explanations on the box, I can only assume that this proves how effective the product is. The gel doesn't leave any greasy residue and has a refreshing fruity/citrussy fragrance that makes me feel as if I'm thoroughly pampering myself.

As the leg gel can be used by pregnant women, I really wish I had discovered it last year when it could have helped ease some of the discomfort of the final months of pregnancy.
*** scroll down for some advice on how to improve your leg health ***

star rating : 4/5

RRP : £5.49 for 125ml

Antistax Healthy Active Leg Capsules are available from Boots, Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Superdrug, Wilkinsons, and Morrisons, and chemists across the UK. Antistax Healthy Active Leg Capsules are available in 50s (£7.82) and 100s (£14.67). Antistax Cooling Leg Gel is £5.49 (RRP) and Antistax Cooling Leg Spray is £5.99 (RRP -available in Boots only).


Here are some other ways you can help the problems, as suggested by GP Dr Jas Kalsi, courtesy of Antistax:

« Gentle exercise – keep moving!
« Put your feet up whenever possible
« Keep your legs moving – try rotating your ankles or flexing and bending your feet from time to time when sitting
« Rinse your legs with a burst of cool water, rubbing from the ankles up
« Eat your greens – this will improve circulation


« Cross your legs – this causes pressure on your veins
« Expose yourself to excessive heat or humidity – this enlarges the veins allowing blood to pool in your legs
« Wear high heeled or rigid shoes – they can affect the muscle pump.

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