As a massage therapist and spa owner, I have to tell you that one of my biggest fears is contagious skin conditions, which is why we take extra precautions. Something that drives us nuts is when a client comes in trying to hide poison ivy or casually doesn’t mention it until we undrape the affected area hoping if we don’t notice their rash, they can still get their service. I can personally recall at least two clients who have tried to downplay their poison ivy, one stating “Oh, you can go ahead and massage right over it, I think the lotion will feel good.” No, thank you!
Fortunately, we can quickly spot a rash and end treatment. What is scary though, is that in many cases, a rash won’t appear for up to 72 hours after exposure to poison ivy, which means that a person may still have contagious oil from the plant on their skin, but it might not be visible to them or others.
If you get a massage, facial, or nail service and have oil from a poison ivy plant on your skin, we could not only be spreading the oil to our own skin and onto a larger area of your skin, but even after washing with regular soap and water, we could still potentially spread that oil to other guests as poison ivy requires the use of a special soap to remove the oil.
If you suspect that you have come into contact with poison ivy, even if you don’t yet have a visible rash, we ask that you play it safe and reschedule your appointment. As long as you give us at least some notice so we can try to fill your appointment time we’ll happily waive the no-show fee in appreciation of you helping us to keep you, your therapist, and other spa guests safe!
For a really good article on avoiding and treating poison ivy, click here. We hope you all have lots of fun outdoors this season and don’t stumble into anything scary or itchy during your gardening, camping, or other outdoor adventures!
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