I wonder what some good strategy are to avoid a medical patch on my skin to get wet when I shower.

The patch is located on the elbow, lateral side, as the following picture illustrates:

enter image description here

  • Strategies vary greatly based on location of the patch. Can you please revise to include location of where patch is?
    – CRSouser
    Commented Apr 3, 2016 at 16:02
  • @CRSouser sure, added. I am also interested in two other locations: shall I write a question for each location? or mention them here? Commented Apr 3, 2016 at 16:15
  • I would initially mention both here, more detail will hopefully provide you a better and more specific answer.
    – CRSouser
    Commented Apr 3, 2016 at 17:09
  • This probably doesn't count as a 'hack', but you can buy plastic sleeves made for this purpose (mostly for casts) at a drugstore.
    – jamesqf
    Commented Apr 6, 2016 at 4:32

5 Answers 5


Don't downvote, hear me out...

Take a latext condom. Cut the tip/end off.

Roll/slip the condom over the patch.

enter image description here

  • Unless you have really skinny arms, I think that's going to cut off your circulation - if you can even get it over your hand.
    – jamesqf
    Commented Apr 6, 2016 at 4:31
  • @jamesqf Condoms are extraordinarily stretchy. Please see the link below. If you have trouble getting one over your hand, please go see a doctor. 3.bp.blogspot.com/_kXnVoQ9ZFkQ/TU4OKZtRXiI/AAAAAAAAJGg/…
    – goodguy5
    Commented Apr 6, 2016 at 13:24
  • Perhaps you use a different brand than I have, but I have experienced problems getting them over a part of my anatomy which is considerably smaller than my arm. (FWIW, the arm in those pictures seems to be that of a child.)
    – jamesqf
    Commented Apr 6, 2016 at 19:30
  • That requires a very big condom, the brands I know are way smaller and won't fit. But +1 for awesome creativity! Commented Jan 16, 2021 at 12:39

Plastic food wrap works well for a temporary covering. Cover the area and include a margin of about 10 cm (4 inches) on the ends, to prevent seepage from reaching the patch. Tape the overlap a bit to prevent loosening.

Though I've found this sufficient to keep a bandage dry during a brief shower, it's not suitable for long immersion.

Paraffin wax would seem a poor choice, as it is not adherent to skin and it is brittle.


You can purchase waterproof bandages to cover the affected area. I have found that they usually work well, except in areas of the body that bend a lot (pointed ends of the knees and elbows).

If you have paraffin wax, you could use it to cover the patch. You may have to put something between the wax and the patch to prevent the patch from being removed when you remove the wax. I have used post it notes when I got desperate.

Three major advantages to using paraffin:

  1. It will fill in irregularly shaped areas without too many issues.

  2. It can be re-used a lot.

  3. It feels really good (most of the time) to have a little heat on the injured area.

Downsides to using paraffin:

  1. It is very brittle. If you have to move the area covered, it will most likely break.

  2. It is easily overheated and can burn you.

If the area affected is subject to swelling, you might want to check with your doctor before using paraffin.


I have a large wound above my knee like 20 stitches and its deep. I desperately wanted to shower after 3 days and there are bunch of solutions out there and stuff you can buy for it specifically. I am a cheapass and didn't wanna spend a dime today so I combined a few ways and had success. Completely dry, no circulation loss and lasted for a 30 min hot shower and could be had it on longer if needed. Check this way out

First wipe area around wound with alcohol then took triple antibiotic(petroleum jelly would also work) and made a thick circle around wound about an inch away from cash. Took plastic wrap and wrapped around my knee tightly pushing the gel tight against saran wrap. Gave it a little rub with my hands making sure it was all around wound no gaps. This sealed any water that may trickle under plastic wrap out for sure. WORKED LIKE A CHARM !!!


When I had a broken arm I used a plastic bag and tape, afterwards i would use a damp sponge to clean the areas around the cast.

I also had a surgery on my right arm and I had to keep the stitches dry. Plastic bag method worked again. After a shower I would remove the bag and use a sponge to clean more precisely around the area.

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