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Education » Health Care Topics » Poison Ivy

Poison Ivy

Itchy Rash Spray

A cool mist spray to soothe itchy rashes such as poison ivy, hives, eczema, chicken pox or contact dermatitis.


(Lavandula angustifolia)
One of the most versatile essential oils. Used to support healthy lung function and blood pressure, promote restful sleep, ease nosebleeds and soothe minor skin issues and burns.

Peppermint India

(Mentha piperita)
Peppermint has antifungal, anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties which make it one of the most popular essential oils. It supports healthy circulatory function, soothes digestion issues and eases pain.

Peppermint USA

(Mentha piperita)
Peppermint has antifungal, anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties which make it one of the most popular essential oils. It supports healthy circulatory function, soothes digestion issues and eases pain.



Traditionally used to for it's antiseptic properties to soothe wounds and insect bites, neutralize smoke, mildew, odors including adding to pain to reduce toxic fumes.

Tea Tree

(Melaleuca alternifolia)
Tea Tree is highly regarded as an antimicrobial, antifungal and antiseptic essential oil.


Poison Ivy

Poison Ivy, Poison Oak, Poison Sumac
The photo shows poison ivy in spring, summer and fall

Leaves of three – let them be!

Poison ivy, poison oak and poison all contain the same rash-causing substance called urushiol (yoo-roo-shee-ol), which is a colorless and odorless oil contained in the leaves of these plants. Not everyone gets an allergic reaction to urushiol, but about 60-80% do. The reaction can appear immediately or as late as five days later. The rash can take 1-2 weeks to heal and may spread to other parts of the body if it gets into the blood stream.

Poison ivy is an itchy or burning rash that appears within 2-3 days as small red bumps that usually blister. The blisters can be different sizes and may ooze clear fluid. The bumps and blisters may look like straight lines or streaks on the skin. The rash may begin to look crusty as it heals.

Wash areas of the skin that may have touched the plant. Many times the rash can be completely avoided by washing the affected areas with plenty of water and soap (such as dishwashing soap) or alcohol. Rinse often, so that the soap or rubbing alcohol doesn't dry on the skin and make the rash worse. You don't want to scrub so hard that you irritate the skin, but the friction is important. Keep washing and rinsing for a while (thinking maybe 5 minutes). Clean under your fingernails if you suspect that the plant touched the fingertips.
Urushiol can remain active on clothing and other items for many months, especially in dry climates. If these items are not cleaned properly, handling them can spread the urushiol to the skin and possibly cause a rash, so wash all clothing, shoes and other items that had contact with the plant or with a person who touched the plant. Clean surfaces such as camping gear and gardening tools as well. Wear vinyl gloves when handling or washing items that have touched poison ivy. Thin rubber (latex) gloves offer no protection, because urushiol can penetrate rubber.

Common Essential Oils Noted to Help:
Chamomile, German or Roman
Eucalyptus radiata
Tea Tree
Raw Honey

1. Peppermint oil neat (undiluted) works great on poison ivy and dries it up very quickly. To prevent it from getting into the blood stream, take Alfalfa tablets.

2. I just got into some poison ivy and used Purify diluted with vegetable oil, and within minutes the welts disappeared and are completely gone!

3. I’ve had terrific success with poison ivy using Plague Defense and Purify. I think Plague Defense actually takes care of the itching as well as the rash. I used both undiluted right on the rash. [Linda’s comment: I’d be careful with Plague Defense undiluted on skin, even if I didn’t have a rash, but especially on a rash. If you try this one, I’d use a carrier oil.]

4. My husband gets a terrible reaction to poison ivy. When he starts to break out, he washes the area with homemade soap, and then he saturates the area with Tea Tree oil. He keeps following up with the Tea Tree oil until the rash is gone. It takes the itching away almost immediately and keeps it from bubbling up and spreading.

5. Tea Tree oil does wonders for our bouts with poison ivy. My husband used to get steroid shots every time he had an outbreak, but not since we started using Tea Tree oil!

6. I had poison ivy on my face and hands. I used Peppermint on my hands, but Linda suggested using Lavender (instead of Peppermint) on my face, including my eyelid. Lavender didn’t sting my eye or tingle like the Peppermint, but worked just as well. The itch disappeared quickly, and the spots dried up in a day! - Lisa

7. I got poison sumac on my arms as a result of picking up kid goats that had been in the woods. I typically get a pretty bad case of it. I used Tea Tree and Peppermint on it as needed and it didn't bother me very much at all!! I had heard that castor oil works well too. Anyway, I have been praising God that these oils came into my life, since I have treated my family for several things successfully with the few EO's I have and all the information on your website! Thank you for working diligently for the Lord to assist in the healing God's people! - Susan

8. I am terribly allergic to poison ivy. If the Lavender or Peppermint isn't working you can try Birch. I have to take Zinc capsules along with my essential oils to make it go away. The combination of essential oils and zinc is the only way to get rid of it for me. My 13-year-old daughter took 30 mg of Zinc and used Lavender topically. I took 75 mg of Zinc and used Birch topically.

9. Poison Ivy got me with a vengeance and went systemic. Even though I knew about the oils I went the doctor route (after doing over-the-counter stuff). Prescriptions for this are very expensive! After about $200 and no success, it dawned on me to try the oils. I used Plague Defense simply because it is my favorite blend. The poison ivy dried up in just a couple of days.

10. The best thing for poison ivy is Sunshine essential oil. My husband is using it on his rash for the first time, and he can't believe how much is has helped over all the other EO he has used in the past. - Sheri

11. I mixed a few drops each of Lavender, Peppermint and Eucalyptus into some witch hazel. It dried up almost immediately! I have given this to several people and it has worked every time....very quickly. If it seems to be getting infected, I add tea tree to the mix. We also use Rhus Tox homeopathic. - Cammy

12. We just had our first bout of poison ivy this season, and Tea Tree is working wonders! It's been two days, and the rash is drying up and has not spread. Yay for Tea Tree oil! - Satin

13. The other day I was taking a walk and got into poison ivy. I had a bottle of Sunshine with me and used it on the rash. Of all the oils I've used, Sunshine deals the best with the itch - sometimes up to 8 hours. Once I my arm was very swollen from the ivy rash, and I used Cypress to reduct the swelling, but nothing beats Sunshine (and it smells wonderful!).

14. The minute I detect I have poison ivy, I apply Plague Defense followed by Peppermint. I use Peppermint to relieve the itching (I apply even if it's not itching). I apply at least morning and evening and sometimes during the day, and the rash is gone in a week or less. It never gives me much trouble with itching.

15. Peppermint oil worked great for my husband who had poison ivy badly on his legs. This is all he used on his legs. - Amanda

16. I was able to keep my poison ivy under control with Lavender. It didn't go away immediately, but it didn't spread or get worse. I've heard that Fells Naphtha soap used w/ cold water right after exposure, keeps it away, but I haven't tried it myself. I was very pleased with the Lavender, as usually I get it full force! - Bev

18. For poison ivy, put one dose of 5 drops of Warrior on the bottoms of the feet. Then put on socks for at least three hours. I had a young man come to me with it so bad that his whole face was red and swollen. We used the Warrior like this, and within 30 minutes his facial swelling was receding. Within 2-3 days he was completely healed. Only the one dose was needed. - Lana (a health care professional)