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View Full Version : Ukulele Rash? (lol)



Kyle23
03-29-2013, 07:08 AM
I know for a fact this has never been asked, because I've googled it... haha but one my right forearm where I support my uke, I keep getting this redness that really itches. I got it a month ago, and it went away, but now it's back and it's really annoying. It's like a red blotch with a bunch of little bumpies. That's the best I can describe it lol. Has anyone else had anything like this and have any suggestions of why this might be happening? ITCHYYYYYYY

Uncle Rod Higuchi
03-29-2013, 07:16 AM
Oh no! You're allergic to your ukulele!

Say it isn't so!

Or perhaps it's the music you're playing... or the strings :)

maybe it's the long-sleeve shirt/sweats you wear while you play your uke?

Benedryl might help or Calamine lotion. I hope it doesn't last... really.

just having some fun at your expense... sorry :)

I've not experienced that myself, at least not specifically caused by my uke.

Hope it clears up... permanently for you :)

keep uke'in',

mikelz777
03-29-2013, 07:16 AM
Is it caused from uke against skin or does it happen when wearing sleeves?

hawaii 50
03-29-2013, 07:20 AM
I hear that there is something in Cocobolo that could irritate your skin, but I think you love playing so much that the reason..if keeps on happening check out the doctor..
other then that when you are not practicing(which you seem to do a lot Haha) put some medication on it..take it off before you practice again

never happened so far to me..but I have Ukulele elbow..that hurts!

Kyle23
03-29-2013, 07:34 AM
Is it caused from uke against skin or does it happen when wearing sleeves?

Uke on skin, I rarely play with sleeves on.

Kyle23
03-29-2013, 07:38 AM
I hear that there is something in Cocobolo that could irritate your skin, but I think you love playing so much that the reason..if keeps on happening check out the doctor..
other then that when you are not practicing(which you seem to do a lot Haha) put some medication on it..take it off before you practice again

never happened so far to me..but I have Ukulele elbow..that hurts!
It's directly where my uke meets my arm too. So if it does go away, it would just come back like it did lol

Tsani
03-29-2013, 07:48 AM
I haven't really developed a rash, but my skin gets red and indented, sometimes bordering on being bruised where my forearm meets the uke body. I have thought about using something like a tennis sweat band to give me some cushioning, but I haven't tried it yet. Are you putting anything like furniture polish or oil on your uke? I think most varnishes that are one ukes should not react with your skin - but who knows - people react to all kinds of things. :confused:

Dan Uke
03-29-2013, 07:52 AM
Mark1 had this issue in the past...You can buy sleeves like golf sleeve and see if that helps. Attached is a link for Nike ones but you can find no name brands for $10.

http://store.nike.com/us/en_us/?l=shop,pdp,ctr-inline/cid-1/pid-521945/pgid-521947

Telperion
03-29-2013, 08:29 AM
Actually, rosewood and rosewood dust can be a severe irritant, both to the skin and lungs. I've never heard of a problem from a finished piece, but I suppose if one were particularly sensitive to it, you might pick up a rash from a bridge or fretboard, which typically aren't laquered.

There are many woods that cause these effects, but the rosewood family (to which cocobolo belongs), is known to be particularly potent.

Here's a link to Woodworkers Source that discusses this topic. There is a link on the page at the bottom to a table showing the degree to which several woods can be irritants. Check and see if your tonewoods are listed.

http://www.woodworkerssource.com/wood_toxicity.php#

Doc_J
03-29-2013, 08:32 AM
Strings by mail has sleeves and wristies to protect your instrument finish but probably works the same to protect you. http://www.stringsbymail.com/store/accessories-2/sleeves-wristies-358/

river_driver
03-29-2013, 08:40 AM
Kyle,
I assume you are playing standing up, using your forearm to press the body of the uke against your ribs?

If so, try either using a strap* of some fashion to support your uke, or play sitting down, with the uke propped up against your thigh. I prefer the latter, because I find that pressing the back of the uke against my body deadens the sound.

*(you don't need to buy a strap, you can fashion one out of an extra long shoelace, kind of like Danielle uses here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XsO9BS4ojCc )

Hope this helps, I suffer from eczema so I know your pain. Thankfully it's never interfered with my uke playing (fingers crossed!!).

garyg
03-30-2013, 02:19 PM
I have a couple of those uke sleeves because I live in the Southern US and love to play outside. They work pretty well although if you sweat in them you'll have to wash them every so often, otherwise you'll get a rash from old sweat <g>. Should protect your arm if they protect the uke. cheers, g2

BlackBearUkes
03-30-2013, 02:55 PM
Its not the wood because there is finish between the skin and the wood. You may be sweating and the skin gets irritated. Try doing what a lot of classical guitar players do when practicing. Take an old white cotton tube sock and cut the toe portion off. Slip the sock over the arm where it rests on the uke. That should take care of the problem.

UkeKiddinMe
03-30-2013, 03:00 PM
Wait. Are you using a strap?

Nickie
03-30-2013, 04:29 PM
You're not going to believe this...try antiperspirant on it before you play...

OldePhart
03-30-2013, 05:48 PM
My guess would be you are sensitive to the wood or the material used to finish it. Some types of wood are actually mildly toxic to some people - and in fact luthiers have to be careful about breathing dust from some varieties. You might try waxing the uke with a couple of coats of paste wax and see if that lessens the problem.

And, of course, wear long sleeves. something soft like flannel shirts won't hurt the finish much, if at all - and perhaps we'll start a revolution to restart the flannel industry. LOL

John

Kyle23
03-30-2013, 06:00 PM
My guess would be you are sensitive to the wood or the material used to finish it. Some types of wood are actually mildly toxic to some people - and in fact luthiers have to be careful about breathing dust from some varieties. You might try waxing the uke with a couple of coats of paste wax and see if that lessens the problem.

And, of course, wear long sleeves. something soft like flannel shirts won't hurt the finish much, if at all - and perhaps we'll start a revolution to restart the flannel industry. LOL

John
I bet that's it. I just hate wearing long sleeves. Such a dilemma haha. I realized it went away when I started playing my soprano gloss uke a lot, it's probably the finish on my concert that does it.

ricdoug
03-30-2013, 06:33 PM
http://www.big5sportinggoods.com/searchx/0/0/1/1/?s=shooter+sleeve&gstoretype=1

Kyle23
03-30-2013, 07:02 PM
I don't think I could ever bring myself to wear a shooting sleeve playing my uke lol I don't even wear them for basketball. I guess I'll just have to wear a different shirt.

Dan Uke
03-30-2013, 07:28 PM
sell your uke and get glossy concert

Annatheuke
04-24-2014, 11:18 AM
Yes I get that too! I think its just the skin is irritated from the uke but yea it is super annoying :/

kwall
04-24-2014, 12:04 PM
fortunatly i dont get it from my ukulele (knock on wood) but my doctor recommended clear nail polish to put whereever it get hives from. I doubt that would be good for the wood though...im not sure someone would have to chime in before u try that maybe.

and get so cream to calm the itch.

pixiepurls
04-24-2014, 12:33 PM
It's directly where my uke meets my arm too. So if it does go away, it would just come back like it did lol

My daughter gets super red on her neck where the violin sits. Sensitive skin :( we actually cover the spot with some soft cloth on the back of the violin so it doesn't rub her. We use the same microfiber cloth used to clean the violin.

BigMamaJ40
04-24-2014, 12:43 PM
You could try one of these:

FrankB
04-24-2014, 12:48 PM
Its not the wood because there is finish between the skin and the wood. You may be sweating and the skin gets irritated. Try doing what a lot of classical guitar players do when practicing. Take an old white cotton tube sock and cut the toe portion off. Slip the sock over the arm where it rests on the uke. That should take care of the problem.

That's what I do when playing a French polished or nitro finished guitar or uke. I sometimes drap a cloth over the lower bout, and if someone wants to try my guitars with reactive finishes, they get the cloth. I don't know if the Kamaka arriving tomorrow has a nitro finish, so I'll have to check that out.

Ukejenny
04-24-2014, 12:49 PM
So sorry to hear that the ukulele is irritating you. What kind of finish does your concert have? I have a rosewood concert with a gloss finish and I'm wondering how much the gloss finish is protecting the skin.

Could you possibly lay a cloth (like the gripper cloths used to keep rugs positioned on the floor) over your forearm while you play? You can cut those foam rug grippers down to size.

OldePhart
04-24-2014, 02:33 PM
Take an old white cotton tube sock and cut the toe portion off. Slip the sock over the arm where it rests on the uke. That should take care of the problem.

That sounded like a great way to protect the oil-finished spruce top on my new BP tenor from getting munged up so I decided to try it...but then I got dizzy every time I played the uke. I finally realized, "he meant a clean sock, dummy!"

John

dickadcock
04-24-2014, 02:47 PM
I was going to suggest an 18 inch length from panty hose, but if you use it, a picture will need to be posted for our ... uh... edification. :)

Kyle23
04-24-2014, 06:32 PM
Man, this thread is so old that I forgot about it. I've had my KPK concert for months and have no problem, so I'm assuming it's whatever finish/wood my Luna is.

Katz-in-Boots
04-24-2014, 06:43 PM
Good to hear your problem is resolved. I read somewhere else someone had an allergy to their Luna.

I get this all the time, whatever uke I play. Doesn't matter whether it is mahogany, koa or whatever; doesn't matter whether it is gloss, satin or whatever, waxed or not. I have come to the conclusion it is just my skin because it isn't restricted to playing the uke or my arms, and it happens through my clothes.

Just lucky I guess.

OldePhart
04-25-2014, 02:26 PM
Good to hear your problem is resolved. I read somewhere else someone had an allergy to their Luna.

I get this all the time, whatever uke I play. Doesn't matter whether it is mahogany, koa or whatever; doesn't matter whether it is gloss, satin or whatever, waxed or not. I have come to the conclusion it is just my skin because it isn't restricted to playing the uke or my arms, and it happens through my clothes.

Just lucky I guess.

Hmmm, I just recently read an article online about some college athlete who is allergic to her own sweat! (My first observation, being the curmudgeon that I am, is why would anyone allergic to their own sweat go into athletics. My second observation, again, being the curmudgeon that I am, was that over the course of my life I have often worked with people who behaved as if they were allergic to their own sweat.)

My first girl-friend way back in the day had so many allergies she had to get shots every week and her doctor said it was probably not a situation that she was ever likely to outgrow. In fact, I dated her for almost a year and they increased her dosages at least twice during that time.

John

Katz-in-Boots
04-25-2014, 06:37 PM
My second observation, again, being the curmudgeon that I am, was that over the course of my life I have often worked with people who behaved as if they were allergic to their own sweat.

ROFLMAO !!!

It isn't sweat I'm allergic to, but it seems to be a pressure thing. I can get red, itchy bits on my tummy from leaning against the table too long or my wrists from them against something. Come to think of it, everything that causes it is wooden... I'm allergic to wood? Through clothing?

Time to get that theremin out again (I planned to teach myself how to play it before getting side-tracked into ukuele).