Fiber glass consists of extremely fine glass filaments woven into plastic or fabric materials for reinforcement. The fiberglass particles are rod shaped and usually three times longer than their width. As such, their shape makes fiberglass slivers easy to penetrate the skin but hard to remove. Once they are embed in the skin, the particles are irritating and could cause a fiberglass rash. It is therefore important to learn how to get fiberglass out of skin if you are going to be working around it. Below we discuss various methods that can be used to get the microscopic shards of glass off of skin as well as how to protect yourself from experiencing the same.
How to get Fiberglass out of Skin
How long does it take to get fiberglass out of your skin? The amount of time taken to get shards of fiberglass from the skin depends on how deep they are embed, size of affected area as well as the severity. Below are simple and fast options on how to get fiberglass out of skin especially on hands.
1. Cold and Hot Showers
It is recommended that you try to get fiberglass off your skin as soon as you realize it has been embed. Taking a shower immediately can help wash of fiberglass dust as well as any embed splinters.
- Immediately, step into a cold shower and stay for about two minutes. The cold water will close up the skin pores and help prevent the fiberglass shards from penetrating further into the skin.
- Follow this up with a hot shower. This will open up the pores once more and in the process help release the fiberglass particles.
- Ensure the water is not too hot while switching as this may result in the pores swelling which in turn causes the fibers to embed more.
2. Epsom Salt
This is most appropriate for fibers than have been embed a while longer. The Epsom salt helps to draw out any fiberglass insulation slivers from the pores.
- Pour a cup of Epsom salt into a small amount of boiling water.
- Pour this mixture into a warm bath and soak for at least 30 minutes.
- To remove the fibers already drawn out, use some cool water to rinse off your skin.
These are a perfect way to remove fiberglass splinters out of the hands. They are best used immediately after working with the fiber.
- To get the invisible glass splinters from your hand, run a panty hose under cold water.
- Once done, run it from shoulder to hand. This should help pull out the tiny splinters from your skin.
- To use it on other areas, gently scrape the pair on affected area.
- For severe cases of glass in skin, take a shower before using the panty hose.
4. Duct Tape
Duct tape is another efficient way on how to get fiber glass out of skin. While using this method, it is important to be cautious as the wrong steps could see the tape drive the fibers further inside.
- Cut a reasonable length of tape and gently place it on the area of the skin with embed glass shards.
- Once properly secured, rip off the tape from the skin.
- This should come off with fibers as well as some hairs which may result in slight pain.
5. Hair Removal Wax
Hair wax can be used to get fiberglass splinters out of the skin. It will work in the same way it does while getting rid of hair. Below is how to get fiberglass out of skin using hair removal wax.
- Warm some wax for the recommended amount of time and as instructed by the manufacturer.
- On the part of the skin with glass splinters, spread a layer of the warm wax and cover it up using the wax strips provided in the kit.
- Leave the wax on to dry for about five minutes before pulling it off.
- This should remove the fiber glass from the skin. Be ready to lose some hair too.
6. Sticky Glue
The concept of glue for removal of glass slivers wax in the same way as wax. Simply spread a layer of white glue on the skin with fiber glass spicules and let it dry completely. Peel the glue off once dry and it should come off with the fibers.
7. Baking Soda
When allowed to dry on the skin, the glass splinters will adhere to baking soda paste. Here is how to get fiberglass out of your skin using baking soda paste.
- To a mixing bowl, pour a portion of baking soda enough to cover affected area.
- Add water half the amount of baking soda and mix until a consistent thick paste forms.
- Apply this on affected areas and leave the paste to dry.
- Rinse off the dry paste using water. As the paste washes off, any glass fiber slivers attached to it will come off. In addition, baking soda will help eliminate fiberglass irritation and itch.
While using tweezers to remove fiberglass from the skin, you simply pluck the slivers out. This method is most appropriate for times where only a few fibers are embed on the skin. Enough caution should be taken not to drive the splinters further into the skin. Here is how to get fiberglass out of skin
- Sit in a well-lit place and get a magnifying glass. Splinters are hard to see using the naked eye and the light and magnifier will go a long way in helping you identify the exact location of the splinters.
- Once you have located the fibers, use the tweezers to gently pull them off your skin slowly. While at it stay focused not to push them deeper or have them break off before the whole piece is out. The process might take more than one trial to get the pieces out.
- When satisfied that all pieces are out, wash the area with water and pat dry.
How to Protect yourself from getting Fiber Glass in Skin
Fiberglass slivers and dust on the skin could cause contact dermatitis. This is characterized by redness, itching as well as swelling on the skin that comes into contact with it. To avoid this as well as the hallowing experiencing of getting fiberglass out of your skin, here are some tips to put into place:
- Ensure you wear protective clothing when dealing with fiber glass. Wear gloves, long sleeved shirts, as well as pants and socks to keep fiberglass off your skin. To protect your eyes, face and lungs, wear googles and a mask.
- Once you are through with the work, wash your hands and change from the working clothes. Keep the clothes that were exposed to the fiberglass dust and splinters separate so they can be laundered separately. This will prevent cross contamination.
- In case you accidentally get fiberglass slivers into your eyes, do not rub them. Instead, flush them with water for 15 minutes. In case there is further irritation see your doctor.
- In case of skin irritation, apply a topical cream to the affected area.
Persons suffering from asthma or any other breathing problems are advised to be extra careful while working with fiberglass insulation. Always keep the fibers away from the lungs and airways since the fiber has particles small enough to penetrate the airways.
In case the above methods on how to get fiber glass out of skin do not work, a discharge results after remove or where there is severe contact dermatitis, see your doctor immediately.