If You Have Stings, You Have A Mate

If You Have Stings, You Have A Mate

Among the multitude of swimmers who get stung by jellyfish across the high seas around the Planet Earth, Penny Palfrey, Patti Bauernfeind’ and Bruckner Chase‘s defeat by the jellies remind us of the StingMate story.

Smithwick’s StingMate® was invented to help the situation, but its invention starts on land.

Julie and Webb Willmott were visiting a drug store while in Florida when a man madly rushed in because his wife had just been stung by a jellyfish.

The man was in panick with his wife in pain. He initially ran up to Webb and Julie with a tube of Preparation H and ask if that would work on a jellyfish sting. Webb, with a masters in chemistry and pharmacology, went over to the over-the-counter pharmaceutical section, grabbed four different products, mixed them together and…within minutes…StingMate® was born.

Later, Webb refined, remixed and reformulated his off-the-cuff solutio born in the spur of the moment. Webb and Julie spent two more years handing out over 10,000 free samples to beach and ocean rescue units, life guards, the diving community, surfers and oceanswimmers all over the world for feedback. Finally satisfied, they released StingMate® commercially in a convenient spray bottle that includes a neutralizing gel.

The primary ingredients of acetic acid (vinegar) and menthol works by inactivating the stinging jellyfish cells. The menthol provides a cooling sensation and the spray formulation provides immediate relief for the affected area, small or large, since the patented gel does not run off the body as would plain vinegar. The gel suspends the stinging cells and allows remaining ones to be simply scraped off the skin with any straight edge card.

From a pharmacy in Florida to helping ocean swimmers with jellyfish stings, the birth of StingMate® to help a man and woman in need was wonderful to hear.

Photo of Penny Palfrey between Oahu and Kauai by Jeff Kozlovich.

Copyright © 2010 by Steven Munatones