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Inspired by Patients, Invented by Nurses

Inspired by Patients, Invented by Nurses


June 08, 2008

8) Beach Balm:

Anyone who has shaved or waxed knows what Rita Govert, RN, had in mind: folliculitis — unsightly red bumps also called bikini irritation. When no over-the-counter remedy seemed to do the trick for her, Govert conjured up her own recipe. Not only did she stumble on a great combination of ingredients, but she cooked up a winner of a product.

“When none of the widely used creams targeting children worked, I began looking at the common ingredients and found mineral oil, zinc oxide, petroleum jelly, and vitamin E,” says Govert, who tried and tested mixtures from her home kitchen. “Some were lumpy, some were too dry. I eventually added cornstarch and found it to be just right.”

Govert used nurse colleagues at Christ Hospital’s adult surgical heart unit as guinea pigs. “They tried different mixtures and gave me great feedback,” says Govert. “I think they all thought I was nuts at the time, but when they tried it on themselves, they saw it worked.”

Today, Govert markets her Beach Balm from her home to salons and private customers. She mixes her secret formula up in a food processor and puts it into jars. Sometimes, if they’re lucky, her children even get to screw the lids on for her. Soon, though, the cream may be marketed in a convenient squeeze tube.

Invented by Rita Govert, RN, BSN

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