Monday, February 25, 2013

February 25th Hint of the Week

CLAY = DRY SKIN Information contributed by Susan Hickman

My old hands have enough problems without bleeding cracks around my fingers (ow wee!). I have tried lots of things myself that help but I thought it might be interesting to consult the worldwide information box to see what other potters do. Here is what I found out:

Why fingers crack and what needs to be done on YouTube: www.youtube.com/watch?v=xC_iKN7CXBI.

Preventive treatment

· Put hand treatment on before you throw or build with clay.

· Wear gloves when glazing. If not, make sure your hands are freshly washed before you glaze to prevent skin oils from causing resist areas.

· After using clay or glaze, wash hands and under fingernails with soap and water. There are several recommendations of following washing with vinegar and air dry hands. Then use hand treatment.

Hand Treatment recommendations:

· User what you have. It won’t do any good sitting on the shelf.

· Potters seem to love bag balm. I work it into my hands for a minute or two and then scrub my hands with soap and water. Dry skin goes down the sink (gross but true). Gene says this stuff stinks but you need to make sacrifices for your art. I usually put another lotion on my hands after washing them.

· There are lots of homemade recipes on the web for you homemaker types (not me)

· Wool wax cream, olive oil, aloe, arnica, hydrocortisone, antibiotic ointment

· Carry carmex or other lip balm in your pocket and work it under your nails several times a day.

· Witches brew: Combine all your leftovers of creams, lotions, gels, ointments and petroleum jelly in a bowl, heat in microwave, and whip together with a mixer.

· “Crack Cream” found at Shopko. Smells funny but must be good since it has lots of natural products in it including Montana arnica flower extract!

· Once you get a crack, make sure it is sealed with ointment and covered until it gets well.

· Band-Aids aren’t helpful when making pottery. Drug stores sell Liquid Bandage, which is like super glue.
· Another option is to wear surgical gloves or cut out a glove finger, slip it over your boo boo and tape it around the base to hold it on.

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