Blisters!

A fact of life for dancers of all styles, and sometimes considered a badge of honor. They still hurt. I had a student who tore a quarter sized piece of skin off the bottom of her foot two days before a competition.  Her preparation to be ready despite this injury is the inspiration for this post.

  • If the blister hasn’t broken, you can carefully drain it with a sanitized pin. To sanitize, drop the pin into a small amount of hydrogen peroxide or rubbing alcohol. Be sure to sanitize your skin as well before and after draining.
  • If the blister hasn’t broken, or the skin has healed to the point that there is no more bleeding or other fluid, you can soak it in Epsom salts. The salt helps to shed dry skin and promote new skin growth. However, if you put the wound in the salts and you feel too much pain, take it out and try again the next day. Add 2 to 4 cups of Epsom salts to about two gallons of very warm water and soak for 20 minutes.
  • Pad the blister, whether it is open or not, with a piece of gauze that goes past all the edges and secure with a gentle tape.
  • The oil Frankincense, while expensive, is AMAZING for healing. A small bottle can cost as much at $70, but one small drop can speed healing from a week to just a few days.
  • As the skin turns a healthy, healing pink you can protect it further with a non-menthol moisturizer before putting on a shoe or dance sock.
  • Tiger balm and similar products can help with itching and pain, but they should not be applied to places you intend to bandage or confine in a shoe.

DO NOT PUT TIGER BALM OR OTHER MENTHOL CONTAINING RUBS ON OPEN SORES.

What tips do you have for caring for blisters and other dance related aches and pains? Everyone has a few tricks, we’d love to hear from you via email or in the blog comments!