Test tube experiences have shown that zinc can kill up to 98 percent of herpes simplex type 1 cells, but real world reports haven’t been as conclusive. One study indicates that topical zinc oxide ointment reduced cold sore duration by up to two days, and the authors of that study had their contributors use the ointment every two hours once they felt a cold sore coming on. This remedy may be better than drugs, in line with research from the United Arab Emirates. In a small study of 16 people, the researchers found that topical applications of honey shortened the duration of cold sores 35 percent better than acyclovir, the active element in prescription herpes antiviral cures. Research from New Zealand found that four different types of honey were in a position to kill the virus in test tubes, suggesting that any unprocessed, raw honey which has the highest levels of antiviral compounds might help treat a cold sore. None of these remedies will preclude you from ever having an alternate cold sore, and you can still shed, or transmit, the virus when cold sores are arising.