Blisters

Questions about equipment and supplies to bring on a trip (including reviews).

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porter
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Blisters

Post by porter »

Wanted to share something I've adopted on the topic of blisters.
Tincture of Benzoin
Last year I ran the Mt Bohemia 10k trail race. In additiin to several other races that fall, I primarily trained on the trails, up and down hills in wet conditions. Had one feisty callous type blister that would not heal at the tip of a toe. It was enough of a distraction to look for a new trick. Came across tincture of benzoin to "glue" it up in prep of race day.
Here's how you use it.
Clean area of blister with alcohol.
Cut a slice into blister popping it and so you can peel back some skin.
Squirt a few drops under skin flap. Its gonna sting. Its called a hot shot. But it will allow the skin to be glued back down and won't slide around for you then.
Apply some more benzoin to topside of skin.
It will be sticky.
Apply tape or bandage on top. It will stick far better than the tape can normally manage on its own adhesive strength.
You can also pretreat your skin prior to hiking and the benzoin will toughen it up, making it less likely you acquire a blister. It takes at least 4-5 applications over a couple days but it does make skin a bit tougher.

I know everyone has their own thing to prevent or treat blisters. Yes, dry feet are optimal. Yes, duct tape, if its all you have- will work! :D And now here is another tool for you. Enjoy!
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Re: Blisters

Post by Midwest Ed »

porter wrote: Thu May 23, 2019 10:42 amSquirt a few drops under skin flap. Its gonna sting. . . .
Ouch! :twisted: It's got ethanol alcohol. I guess it's gonna hurt.

Interesting information. I'm still a big fan of prevention. I always stop early on and then periodically to apply moleskin in massive quantities BEFORE the first sign of excessive heat, redness or discomfort. Even more so with newer footwear. Prevention failure can happen so good remedies are always welcome. Except for a severely sprained ankle or broken bone, nothing ruins an expedition like blisters.

Sounds like using it before the blisters in order to increase moleskin tape adhesion is a big plus.

Question: Do people actually prefer duct tape's prophylactic quality? Or is it a cost thing?
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Re: Blisters

Post by johnhens »

Leukotape is a good preventative. Also Band Aid makes blister pads that are a preventative.
https://sectionhiker.com/leukotape-blis ... nd-hiking/

https://www.band-aid.com/products/hydro ... t-assorted
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Re: Blisters

Post by porter »

Yes!
Leukotape is another preferred tool in the medic tent. That was part of great info I found searching around ultra marathon (50mile) trail race pages.
A: I think having & using duct tape is a wide-versatility thing moreso than cost thing.
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Re: Blisters

Post by Midwest Ed »

porter wrote: Fri May 24, 2019 8:00 amA: I think having & using duct tape is a wide-versatility thing more so than cost thing.
Sort of like it's a Red Green thing. :D
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Re: Blisters

Post by thesneakymonkey »

luekotape fan here. Love that stuff. It stays on for days without destroying your skin (dont get me wrong though it IS SO STICKY).
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Re: Blisters

Post by Ted4bp »

Old post but for what its worth I'll add.

I use darn tough socks, follow a hiking regimen, and use foot glide. Blisters are the enemy of hiking so I tend to my best tool (feet).

If you start to feel a "hot spot" stop immediately! Apply a small patch of duct tape over the area, it adheres well on one side and slides on the other. make sure your foot is dry first.

Happy Trails!
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Re: Blisters

Post by Tom »

Like others note, prevention is key, and liner socks do wonders for me.
If you do get a blister that's rough though, I reach for the leukotape or even Tegaderm.
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Re: Blisters

Post by hooky »

porter wrote: Fri May 24, 2019 8:00 am Yes!
Leukotape is another preferred tool in the medic tent. That was part of great info I found searching around ultra marathon (50mile) trail race pages.
A: I think having & using duct tape is a wide-versatility thing moreso than cost thing.
Long, wet BWCA trip and my 17 year old goretex hunting boots finally gave up the ghost on a portage trail on day 3. The toe box was digging into the top of my foot and I was bleeding from a sharp little shard of plastic.. Duct tape to the rescue. Applied it to the top of my foot, put my sock back on and never gave it another thought until I had to peel it off 4 days later. Ouch!!

I had also used it the day before to patch a hole below the waterline in the kevlar boat.
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Re: Blisters

Post by NancyT »

I always use superglue and duct tape since I have both in my emergency kit anyway.
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Re: Blisters

Post by bobcat »

Where can you get tincture of benzoine? I looked in a couple drug stores - no dice.

My secret weapon for blisters while backpacking has been a product called "Second Skin" - it's a hydrogel burn dressing and is very cushioning to sore blisters, under moleskin or duct tape. I have used benzoine, I used to get it in little single-use ampules when I worked for a company that made them as medical supplies, but since I no longer work there I need a retail source.
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Re: Blisters

Post by johnhens »

3M makes Tincture of Benzoin ampules. Amazon has them. Should be able to get a small bottle of Tincture of Benzoin at Walgreens.
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Re: Blisters

Post by hooky »

REI and Walmart carry the small single use tubes.
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Re: Blisters

Post by JHammer1 »

“use darn tough socks, follow a hiking regimen, and use foot glide. Blisters are the enemy of hiking so I tend to my best tool (feet).”

I second this practice. Also highly recommend the rei silk liners which came as a recommendation from friend who hiked 150 mile trail in Europe w no blisters.
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