Taking care of clothes exposed to poison ivy is simple. I have to keep items that come into contact with poison ivy separate from other because the oils that cause skin irritation remain on the surface of the fabric or leather.
How to clean clothes exposed to poison ivy
Should you or one of your friend encounter poison ivy after hiking, climbing or trekking adventure, whether it be in woods or playing in the backyard, here’s how to be certain you don’t transfer the chemicals from the plant onto the skin along your clothing, follow the tips below on how to remove poison ivy from clothing:
- Carefully remove or don’t touch the outside of your clothing with bare skin and store any contaminated clothing. It’s very easy for poison ivy to spread from one item to another so wear gloves when handling the clothing and keep the clothing separate from other items.
- Wash the affected items separately with ordinary laundry detergent at the highest recommended water temperature, for the longest cycle, and, if possible, on the largest load setting. Washing the items separately will prevent the poison from spreading to other garments.
- Do not overload the machine and allow clothes to beat freely. Avoid using largest load setting as it may sound wasteful, but even with detergent, oils aren’t very soluble. And the was water is the most efficient way to remove as much urushiol as possible.
- If you can’t wash the clothing right away, store it in a plastic garbage bag until you have time to do with it.
- Avoid washing with non-contaminated clothing with contaminated clothing. It may keep the clothing to churn more easily and increase the chances of removing the sticky and steady urushiol and can lead to poison ivy contamination of your machine surfaces.
- For dry clean clothing, be sure to tell your dry cleaner. They will appreciate the notice!
How to clean gardening tools that come in contact with poison ivy?
Poison ivy plants make a horrible garden companion. Research shows that several hikers and gardeners know the itchy indications of coming in contact with poison ivy and they will do their best to avoid touching the vines. Some gardeners use garden tools to grip the garden safe from the rash while wearing protective clothes but without knowing, the urushiol, the itch-causing substance, remains on tools surfaces. Check out the tips below on how to clean gardening tools contact with poison ivy:
- You need to fill a large plastic tub, trash can or bucket with hot water and grease-fighting detergent according to the product directions based on the amount of wash water.
- Wear long pants, long sleeve shirt or get a slicker set that would be worn only for poison ivy work.
- Infected tools from poison ivy should be placed in the soapy wash water, except if they are power tools. Let the tools soak in hot water for about 10 to 15 minutes
- Scrub tool surfaces with a rag to scrub away the poison ivy.
* For power tools cleaning, dip a rag in the soapy water and wipe all surfaces with the rag.
- Rinse the tools with a garden hose to remove the soapy residue and dry the tools with a rag.
- Finally, soak a rag with isopropyl alcohol and wipe down tools surfaces in order to disinfect poison ivy affected surfaces.
A little prevention can go a long way. For safety measure, you may never learn how painful the rash can be.