So, you went on a hike and now you have an itchy, painful rash on your legs. If you live in the midwest or northeast, it could be poison ivy. Poison ivy can be contracted from direct contact with the plant, or by contact with clothing, pets, or people who have contracted it. Fortunately, the rash is harmless to most people, but that doesn’t mean the itching isn’t bothersome. As summer is the most common season to run into poison ivy, we’re sharing some natural remedies to treat that pesky rash.
Apple cider vinegar
This vinegar has a number of helpful uses, including neutralizing itchy skin. Apply apple cider vinegar to the skin after exposure and leave on for several minutes before washing away with cool water and mild soap.
Baking soda also neutralizes itch and makes a good replacement for calamine lotion if you don’t have any on hand. Mix three tablespoons of baking soda with one tablespoon of water, then apply the paste to the affected area.
Witch hazel dissolves surface oils and cleans off bacteria. Use a cotton swab to apply witch hazel to the affected area and experience sweet relief.
This plant is basically an across-the-board solution for healthy skin. Opt for store-bought aloe or squeeze the gel from the plant yourself and apply to the rash to soothe and cool. Opt for aloe with as few additives as possible and keep it on hand for sunburns and dry skin as well!
While this may sound strange, oatmeal is actually a common ingredient in many skin care products. Its anti-inflammatory properties help soothe skin, especially if you can find colloidal oatmeal. Add oatmeal to a lukewarm bath and soak for 30 minutes to calm a poison ivy rash.
This one may sound counterintuitive, but saltwater dries out the rash for less itching and pain. If you live near the ocean, go take a long dip, but if you don’t, Epsom salts in a lukewarm bath will do the trick.
These natural remedies are a great starting place for dealing with a poison ivy rash, but we recommend consulting your doctor for personalized recommendations, especially if you have a severe reaction to poison ivy.