Studies on glucosamine as a cream serve up mixed reviews. While your best bet is liquid form, if you absolutely must use a glucosamine cream, use one with menthol or camphor mixed in as well. Menthol and camphor have a analgesis (pain numbing) effect that can help with joint pain. The main point is not if glucosamine is effective, we know it is. The question is how much glucosamine is actually absobed through the skin? Studies on glucosamine absorption are very limited and as of yet are not comprehensive. Common sense would dictate that liquid glucosamine is absorged faster and more completely than cream form. Many glucosamine cream products actually list the glucosamine as an inactive ingredient! So what form is best based on what we know today?* Please note: you should not ever actually attempt to eat or consume glucosamine creams, for many of them can be toxic if swallowed. When it comes to the form of glucosamine you take, the two most important factors are the form and the dosage. Pills simply are not a great alternative either. Pills contain glucosamine that is bound to many extraneous fillers and stabilizers, and is difficult for the body to process, absorb and digest. Glucosamine creams can in some cases be of moderate benefit but generally become more effective with additional drugs such as menthol and camphor. Liquid glucosamine contains homogenized pure glucosamine, without wasteful binders and fillers and is the preferred form to take. Liquid glucosamine leads to far greater absorption, more relief, less waste and much better results.Liquid glucosamine also has the added benefit of working faster than pills, due to the faster absorption. Instead of waiting 6 months in some cases, liquid glucosamine starts working anywhere from 2 weeks to 3 months, depending on the severity of pain. If you manage to get any relief at all from creams, it is likely due to the other ingredients in the cream and not the glucosamine. In some more severe cases, it may take up to 3 or 4 weeks to see its effectiveness, but the effects are going to be stronger and last longer than other drugs like aspirin or ibuprofen.Be sure to visit the Glucosamine Product Guide for a review of commercially available glucosamine products.