In North America, poison ivy is a weed. It grows in both the east and the west. However, ivy, poison oak, and poison sumac can also be found in Canada and Western United States. For hikers who take an adventure in these regions, it is important to clean their shoes to avoid poisonous hazards.
We will guide you, step by step, on how to get poison ivy off shoes and discuss this harmful weed more.
Table of Contents
- What to Know about Ivy Plants?
- Items to Remove Poison Ivy off Shoes
- How to Remove Poison Ivy from Shoes
- What Should We Do During and After the Hikes?
- How Long Does Poison Ivy Stay on Shoes?
- Final Thought
What to Know about Ivy Plants?
The poison ivy plant is in the cashew family, which causes allergic reactions in around 85% of people exposed to poison ivy.
This is due to urushiol oil, a substance found in the sap. You can get urushiol poisoning when you touch the leaves, stems, or fruits of poison oak or poison ivy plant. If you come into contact with it a lot, you will get dermatitis. These allergies can cause pain, itching, and other severe conditions.
Items to Remove Poison Ivy off Shoes
To get urushiol off shoes in the best way possible, you should use the following items:
1. Brush with a soft bristle
A soft bristle brush is advised instead of using a coarse brush, which might harm some shoes. Any brush capable of foaming and cleaning urushiol oil should suffice. To keep the hands clean from urushiol residue on your shoes, look for a handle design brush. And be extra careful by using gloves when handling the whole process.
2. Laundry detergent
Separately wash the affected items with regular laundry detergent at the highest suggested water temperature. The poison ivy will not spread to other clothing if the items are washed separately. Even with laundry detergent, oils aren’t particularly soluble, so using hot water may seem helpful. The most efficient approach to eliminating as much urushiol as possible is to have a lot of detergents – the wash water.
You’ll use this laundry detergent on the shoes once you’ve applied the solution to the brush. Check that it can meet enough water, and select the cloth you won’t mind discarding after your shoes are clean. Cleaning shoes constructed of sensitive materials, such as leather, should be done using a non-abrasive cloth.
4. Heavy rubber glove
It’s required in the process since latex gloves are too thin and porous to avoid urushiol exposure. Make sure you have durable gloves that you don’t mind discarding after the job is done. Gloves with a greater length are preferable. If your forearms haven’t been afflicted by poison ivy yet, using rubber gloves to protect them can be quite beneficial.
How to Remove Poison Ivy from Shoes
Step 1: Get your shoes ready for cleaning
- Start cleaning the shoe by taking off any unnecessary or loosened insoles.
- Don’t forget to put on your rubber gloves to avoid contact with surfaces of your skin. Not only will you be less likely to spread urushiol outside, but the fresh air will also help you avoid pain and allow you to clean the shoes more easily.
Step 2: Mix your washing powder
- To begin, add two tablespoons of laundry powder with 2 glasses of hot water into the bucket.
- Combine the two ingredients, being cautious don’t overfill the washing powder bottle. If your proportions aren’t quite correct, you may always add or decrease soap.
Step 3: Use brush with a delicate bristle
- Dip the brush in the same way you would a normal brush. It is not necessary to thoroughly submerge the shoe in the combination because this will not aid in the removal of urushiol.
- Begin by brushing the shoe surface with a decent brush and soap. Now we’ll go to the internals, where the more delicate portions around the blade and socket should be given extra attention. If the detachable base is accessible, scrub it. With a brush and solution, scrub everything that has come into contact with poison ivy.
If you’re going to clean poison ivy from clothing with a washing machine , make sure they’re not in the same load as goods that haven’t been exposed to poison ivy. Then, run an empty cycle in the washing machine to ensure that no poison ivy residue remains.
Step 4: Rinsing the shoes
Wet the fabric with fresh water. To prevent soaking the fabric and having the shoes take longer to dry, use the same solution you used to clean them. Wipe soap residue from all corners of the shoe using a woolen towel. Make sure your shoe’s surface is dirt-free and that there is any detergent residue on it. Put your gloves back on!
What Should We Do During and After the Hikes?
Clean Poison Ivy Off Shoes First
Urushiol affects your skin, altering its chemical characteristics and triggering an allergic response. If you touch poison ivy, oak, and poison sumac plants, thoroughly wash the area.
Urushiol, commonly present on equipment and clothes such as hiking boots, can still produce an allergic reaction. However, this is less likely if you only come into the toxin with low frequency. Ivy’s residue alone may not be enough to induce a significant allergic response.
To avoid the spread of the rash, wipe your skin before washing poison ivy from the shoes and some related objects. Fels-Naptha is one of the therapies for skin exposed to poison ivy. This is a fantastic way to get urushiol out of the skin.
Although Naptha was formerly a significant product component, it was removed due to health issues, so soap remains efficient at eliminating urushiol.
Rub the sore region with soap, warm water, and Fels-Naptha’s suitable product to eliminate urushiol oil. The oil will be able to permeate deeper into the pores if you use hot water.
To alleviate the itching due to urushiol, take an extremely hot bath once the oil on your skin has been removed. Use lotion or an antihistamine to decrease swelling. Seek medical help right away if the response is severe or affects sensitive regions.
Put your shoes out of the path of other items
Shoes used in hiking in contact with any items should not be left on the shoe rack. This can transfer urushiol to other surfaces, making you wear or come into contact with it and producing an allergic response.
Take off your shoes when you come home and store them out of sight of family members and as far as other things. It’s better to place it outside, and you must have prepared the proper cleaning as soon as possible.
How Long Does Poison Ivy Stay on Shoes?
Poison oak, poison ivy all contain the same chemical (poison toxin or urushiol), which causes a blistering, itching rash 12 to 72 hours after direct contact.
Depending on where it settles, the sap can remain active for months on your clothing, shoes, tools, leather, bag, or pet. You can expose yourself by touching the place a few weeks later if the mark is on your body and you don’t wash it off soon.
Fortunately, suppose you’re prepared with some tips and know what to throw. In that case, you can avoid getting poison ivy on shoes again, and you might even be able to recognize the plant and prevent getting it.
Now that you know how to get poison ivy off shoes, you may go hiking in the wilderness without caring about minor poison ivy, poison oak, or poison sumac plant.
Moreover, you will no longer be afraid of exposure turning into a serious response or rash to other areas of your body. It’s very aggravating to have poison ivy on shoes again days or weeks later, which is why wiping urushiol as soon as possible is critical.