Non-musicians often ask me what exactly ChopSaver does and what makes it so special for musicians. Well, if you’ve never played a brass instrument, it may be a little hard to understand. But here is what happens. When you play a brass instrument, you put your lips together (sort of like saying the letter “m”) and blow air across them to create a vibration (sound) and all the while, you are pressing a round piece of metal against your lips. The formation of the lips while playing is called an embouchure, a French word that actually means “to flow into” and “mouth.” Hopefully, you’re not pressing too hard and the air is flowing smoothly and the lips vibrate freely and you create a beautiful sound. But sometimes, as with any muscle, the lips will swell and become fatigued.
That is when it gets more difficult to play and it’s a little different for each instrument. A trombone, baritone, euphonium or a tuba mouthpiece are larger than a horn or a trumpet mouthpiece and the pressure applied while playing affects the lips in different ways. But the phenomena of lip swelling is universal to all brass players although some people suffer from it more than others. Young players who may be using bad technique and forcing too much and using too much mouthpiece pressure on their lips will suffer more than a professional who is more aware of what he’s doing. Nonetheless, it can happen to anybody regardless of their level of expertise. Not only does ChopSaver moisturize the lips, it actually reduces the swelling associated with playing a brass instrument. This is why ChopSaver users say that they recover more quickly and many actually report they can play and practice a little longer when they use ChopSaver.