Popular Mechanics says that a cotton ball smeared with Vaseline or ChapStick is "a foolproof fire starter." The Vaseline works as your fuel, and once you get the Vaseline-soaked cotton ball lit, the flame should continue to burn under pretty much any condition. The Popular Mechanics article is rather light on details, so I also found a post on the Survival and Equipment weblog detailing how to make single-use petroleum jelly candles using cotton balls, petroleum jelly, and aluminium foil. You will, of course, still need a flint or match to get the cotton ball started (or just some steel wool and a battery).
Start a Fire in the Rain
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