Poison Ivy, Oak, or Sumac: Barrier Lotions and Creams
If you know you will be working around
poison ivy, oak, or sumac, you may think about using a
barrier cream or lotion. This will help prevent the plant oil (urushiol) from
contacting your skin and causing a rash (allergic
Less than 1 hour before contact with the plant,
apply the product in a thick, complete layer.
Wash the product off
thoroughly within 4 hours (preferably as soon as possible) after contact with
the plants. The product only delays the penetration of the
For continued protection, reapply the product every 4
Products containing bentoquatam, such as IvyBlock, may help prevent the rash.
These products should not be used on children younger than age
6 or by anyone who already has a rash from the poison ivy, oak, or sumac
plants. You can get these products without a prescription.
Barrier creams and lotions do not completely protect against getting a poison ivy rash.
How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.