Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Review: Band-Aid Blister Block Stick

I have the most pleasant commute to work in the world. I leave my dorm near Union Square at 8:30 and meander Southwest, strolling through Washington Square park, passing the florists, fetish shops and puppy stores of the Village and playing a game with myself where I pretend I'm looking to buy a townhouse on a $10 million budget and I have to decide which one I like best. By 9 I'm at the office, feeling refreshed and ready to start the day. Then I do the same thing (but backward) at 5, a fantastic way to be alone and process the events of the day while planning my evening.

But even the most lovely commute can go bad when your feet hurt. It's always a few blocks from home (far enough that you'd be late if you turned around) that you start to notice your shoes are pinching in a few spots. It's a slight discomfort now, but after an hour of walking and 8 hours on your feet, it's going to be blister city down there. I like to always stock my purse and desk with band aids (Band-Aid Tough Strips are by far the most adherent and last the longest) but sometimes you need a little prevention. If I know in advance that my shoes will be problematic, I put heel cushions (like these), except I get the cheap kind from the shoe repair store) in to reduce friction, but sometimes these things sneak up on you when you're not prepared.

There are a number of products aimed at athletes who are prone to blisters (BodyGlide) is a favorite that many women have adopted for non-athletic shoe problems), but Band-Aid recently came out with the Blister Block stick which decreases shoe friction to prevent blisters from developing and is the perfect size and shape for carrying in a purse. It's like a mini stick of deodorant that you rub on areas of your feet that are prone to blisters, allowing the shoe to glide over the area instead of rubbing and irritating the skin. It's also totally invisible and doesn't rub off on shoes.

I've been using it everyday for two weeks now and I have to say that it's not perfect. I've gotten a couple of blisters, but they were smaller, fewer and took longer to emerge than usual (halfway through the day as opposed to the first 30 minutes of wear, usually). These were in shoes where blisters were essentially inevitable, but I found that the Blister Block worked perfectly in almost all my other pairs (including a few that usually give me blisters).

If your feet are hot or you're walking a lot, you'll need to reapply the stick every couple of hours (I've been able to get away with doing it before my long walk in the morning, once at lunch, and then before my long walk home). The stick, while small, has enough product to last about a month, and for $6.99, I think it's a bargain for a month of essentially blister-free walking.


M said...

I like the blister blocker too, although I don't seem to have as much success as you did with it (I have to re-apply more frequently, especially if walking around a lot). Just a little warning though: it melts really easily, so either don't take it with you or put it in a plastic bag if you're going to be spending a lot of time in the sun!

Annie said...

First, I want to say I absolutely LOVE your blog (been reading daily for a while now but it's my first time commenting). I picked up a blister block a few days ago for a wedding coming up. I'm a little nervous about trying it because I don't want to be hobbling about in my new shoes but hopefully it'll lengthen the time before blisters as it did for you.

B. Goldenwood said...

Hmmm.... any idea how blister blocker would work with stiletto sandals?

H said...

What about me -- I wear knee-high pantyhose with my pumps? Surely there must be some way to prevent my blisters as well!

sara said...

The blister blocker is a great idea, and I like foot petals. They even have some cute little ones that you can stick inside the straps of your strappy sandals. If you are walking a lot the adhesive will wear off more quickly, but if you keep a few in your bag that really isn't much of a problem. They have definitely lessened the appearance of blisters for me, especially in the strappy sandal compartment. They also work well with hosiery, and help keep you from slipping around!

Marianna said...

This sounds great. Another neat trick to avoid blisters is by rubbing a bit of Vaseline on the problem areas of the inside of your shoe.