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Lube job vs. liners
“My blistered heel seemed to be the most interesting part for TTers on my recent gear review thread, so I figured I'd ask about my latest option for dealing with the problem.
While up in Marquette the last couple days, I came across some stuff called Bodyglide in a gear shop. It's like a little deodorant stick that you swipe over skin subject to friction or chafing, says it's not oil-based or sticky. For $5, I figured it was worth a try.
Anyone out there ever try this stuff?”
“No I have never used it but,as for blisters gards the Ban-Aid Blister Block is the best stuff I have ever used!
“Bodyglide is useful for preventing chaffing especially chaffing of the thighs while running or hiking. As for its use in preventing blisters - I have no idea. I rarely get blisters - I think for one main reason - the boots I hike in are the same boots I wear all the time and I do mean all the time - if I have a shoe on at all then its the boots I hike in.”
“Pekka, I wonder how long this stuff lasts, and when it breaks down what is it like,slimy or sticky or what? I reckon its worth a shot. Hopefully it'll do you fine. Unless of course your hurt feet will insure that I get hot ribs on our future hikes. If thats the case try going barefoot, really! LOL”
“I use to get blisters all the time, always in the same spot. It would happen no matter what I did, what socks I used or what boots I had on.
I was on trailplace.com and posted my problem on their forum and someone suggested using Benzione compound tincture, aka tough foot. You can get It in a real small plastic bottle. Mine fits in my first aid kit. I just rub in in before I put my socks on and it toughens the skin where it is applied. It is sticky so I always use a liner sock. I haven't had a blister since I started using it and that was several years ago.
My problem has beens solved!”
“I use bodyglide while mountain biking.
Works great. Not messy at all. Does not stain clothes.”
“sirpete, I have some of that benzione tincture. I used it for the Badlands and that was the first time I ever HAD heel blisters. You are right about the need for liner sox with it. It is sticky. But I may experiment with it again.
birch, if I can find a solution to the blister issue, maybe I'll just bring a piglet on a leash for the next hike and the ribs will be really fresh that way. After all, those campfires sure made for some great grilling coals.
I'll save going barefoot for when I get my sailboat and do all my hiking on sandy beaches.”
“if there is anything I can do to help with the blisters I will....... heck I'd give you my right leg.........for a little of that there piglet on a stick”
“This little piggie went a hiking,
and that little piggie never came home,
cause those TTers had spare ribs,
'cept Nigal who had smoked salmon,
and Buddha Bear cried vin, vin, vin
all the way home.
sirpete, let's just say, when the vension does a disappearing act on a Michigan Mountaineer trip, a resourceful hiker must conjure up something equally magical.”
Speaking of vin-o...
“...has anyone on TT used rubbing alcohol to toughen the skin on their feet, ala Colin Fletcher's practice?”
“i agree with the band aid bliter block, thats some might good band-aids. They also have these cool ones that when you put them on you leave them on for a week and when you take it off its all healed! sticks well. i like band-aids. hee hee especialy when they have cool colors.”
Never get blisters anymore
“Were you wearing on your feet? The only time I ever get blisters is when I try to wear running shoes instead of hiking boots.
Seems like I used to get them a lot when I first started hiking though.”
“Just back from D.C. (see appropriate thread here...hehehe). I wore regular shoes and got -- get this -- a stinkin' blister on my right LITTLE TOE!! Now that is weird!! I think my toe is too fat on its underside. Geez! It was a pain. I popped it so it could drain. Then I used Compeed stick-on stuff for blisters. BUT... that is too big for the little toe. (Otherwise I LOVE Compeed and similar products for AFTER a blister forms.) I tried a small band-aid. Not much better. Finally got some cotton from a bottle of ibuprofen I'd purchased. Stuck a big wad between 4th and 5th toes, to help keep little toe from sole of shoe. That helped, but left me feeling like my shoe was too tight across my foot. Oh well. A new problem to overcome. Will have to see if this happens with my hiking boots!! HOPE NOT!!!!!”
“Pekka, I am gonna try to redeem my venison mix up by cooking and providing venison at my churches wild game dinner. Sauteed venison medallions and a salad of bitter greens.”
“birch, just remember our blisters when you say grace over that venison. Maybe a "good word" can cure our ailments.”
“Spenco Second Skin - works fine with regular shoes, stays on about a week. Not as good in a hiking boot, tried Spenco, Bandaid and Compeed. Moves around and gets the sock liner gummy. Lasts about a day while backpacking, and it moves to another spot (went thru a lot on the 30 day JMT trip). Used for blisters and calluses on the ball of the foot.”
“In my original report on getting the latest blister, I noted that I treated it early stage (dime size) by applying a medium Band-Aid Compeed Blister Blocker per instructions. While it initially seemed to lessen the problem, by the end of the next day (when I only walked about a mile and otherwise ran shuttle) the blister and irritation had actually spread up my heel beneath the Compeed. Removing the Compeed pad was a bear because it really adhered, but replacing it with some gauze and tape got the healing started.”
“I use duct tape as a preventive measure before the blister appears. When you feel a friction spot or "hot spot" forming, go ahead and put a patch of duct tape on it. Cut it to fit the situation. The duct tape sticks to your skin, stays in place, but is very easily removed. Take the tape off every night and replace the next day. I have had trips where I taped the whole bottom of my feet and heels. A few minutes after you apply it, you don't even know it's there.
Great stuff. Must have some with me when I go backpacking. Can fix many thing with it.”
“Body Glide is great stuff for chaffing; never used for blister prevention.
Duct tape over hot spots works well for prevention.
Second skin for healing blisters.”
The best thing you can do is leave them alone! If they're so incredibly sore & swollen that there's no way you can walk on 'em... then take a sterilised knife/pin/needle and puncture it at the base... *not* on top.... cover them with a *dry* sterile TELFA dressing and cover that up with duct tape or stretchy Elastoplast bandage(comes in rolls @ 3"x10' or so) or moleskin if it comes right down to it.
Otherwise, pad them like Lizs suggested with cotton(corn pads fit around 'em nicely too) and let the little buggers be. They WILL dry up... and the skin will be a lot tougher in those areas. Tincture of Benzoine will make the skin on your feet tougher... but unless you're really into the whole S&M lifestyle, *don't* inject it into the blisters to dry 'em out!!! It actually causes tissue necrosis of the raw flesh under the blister & it hurts like H-E-L-L!!!!
As for 2nd Skin, BlisterBlock, Compede et al... they aren't really designed to be stuck on your blisters while you're still hiking. They're meant to help heal it afterwards. What ends up happening to your feet is that the moisture from the blocks (& your feet) makes the tissue wet... remember how soft & wrinkly your skin is after a long bath? That's what happens to your feet... the Army calls it immersion foot(different cause, same effect)... all that nice soft, healthy tissue under your Compede or 2nd Skin or Blister Blocks gets soft & mushy & breaks down more easily, hence the bigger blisters...
Prevention you ask? Blisters are caused by friction... get rid of the friction & voila! No more blisters. Wear Polypro or some other type of synthetic liner sock to wisk moisture away from those tender tootsies... and (we all know this one) stay away from cotton! Wool or wool blend outer socks are a big help. Like BS & gearjunkie mentioned, if you feel hot spots starting, stop & take care of 'em (Duct tape, etc) before they turn into blisters... prevention, remember?”
“Gawd.... listen to the medic preach, huh? Sorry guys.... that almost sounds patronising! It wasn't meant to be... honest!! :-S”
“You're right...I don't get many blisters. I used the 2nd skin on my calluses (not blisters) to soften it up (JMT). They don't stick to the ball of the foot very well, and always ended up at my toes. On the heels, I used them for hot spots, and that prevented blisters.
I recently (Santa Rosa desert bp) got a blister on the inside of my heel and busted it. It was painful, but I think I just left it open to dry. I had to drain it a few times because it kept filling up.”
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