Review by: maculated, 2004-08-25
Oh, the things I will do for a free bar of soap.
When I was perusing the wares at the Salt Lake City OutdoorRetailer show, I happened by the booth of AllTerrain Company. They happen to make my favorite bug repellent, a DEET free, all-natural citronella-based lotion that's seen me through many mosquito and fly-free ascents. As I was discussing the merits of the rest of their product line as it relates to the readers of Rockclimbing.com, I happened upon the definitive aid: Poison Oak soap.
Now, unless you're a desert rat or a flatlander, you have probably stumbled upon the devil weed. It's innocuous enough - and in California, it's usually the lone green plant in the forest during summer. But really, there's nothing like the itch that comes a day or two after a really good trek through the backcountry brush.
I've had my fair share of PO. I've gotten so allergic that it often disseminates to other parts of my body (most enjoyably, my face) no matter how small an area it touches. Because of this, I'm fairly vigilant against . I keep an arsenal of alcohol based-itch relief around at all times and I always am sure to shower with dish detergent after every chance encounter (trust me, works like a charm).
So why is it I'm RUNNING into a known poison oak area on a lovely Saturday morning? Somebody call the cops, this crazy chickie is now RUBBING a leaf of poison oak on her leg. And the other one? Why? Why?
All so that you, the good readers of RC.com can know the wonders or failures of AllTerrain's Remedy soap. Yes, that's right, I gave myself poison oak on both legs. (You gotta have a control reaction, right?)
I hopped into the shower and washed my right leg with the soap. One day later . . . hmm, itchy!!!
Test 1: Does not remove poison oak oils.
After getting back from work, laden with dog slobber, sheep dander and dust, I hop into a hot shower. If you've had poison oak and taken a shower with it, you know the agony hot water has on such an area. I quickly lather up the right leg with the soap. No effect.
Test 2: Does not alleviate itching in shower.
A half hour later, my right leg still itches considerably, but not nearly as much as the right.
Test 3: Does do something to ameliorate the itch.
Repeat for four days.
The rash on the right leg has fully formed and is a lovely collection of hard and red bumps, but the itch? She no there.
The rash on the left leg looks about the same, but . . . yeah, it itches.
So, in conclusion, the soap does help a bit. Should you rush out and get it? Only if you're like me in that you get it badly and NOT like me in that you can't take a little itch.