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How to Pack Leukotape Blister Tape in a First Aid Kit

Rolls of Leukotape are awkward to pack, so it's best to cut it into strips and store them in your first aid kit
Rolls of Leukotape are awkward to pack, so it’s best to cut it into strips and store them in your first aid kit flat

Leukotape is an very sticky first aid tape that long distance hikers often wear on their feet to prevent blisters. Once you put it on, it will stick for days, even if you get it wet, although it’s easy to pull off when you want to remove it.

Leukotape is best used as a preventative over potential blister hot spots and not something you want to put over an open blister. Leukotape is non-elastic so it has no give in it and is very different from kinesiotape, which is stretchy and is commonly used by physical therapists to tape limbs or body parts for better alignment or function.

Rolls of Leukotape are awkward to pack, so it’s best to cut it into strips and store them in your first aid kit flat. The problem is finding something to stick the tape to, so that it peels off and is still usable.

Peel off long strips of Leukotape from the roll and stick them to the adhesive label paper backing.
Peel off long strips of Leukotape from the roll and stick them to the adhesive label paper backing.

Release Paper

Have you ever bought a pack of adhesive labels that peel off a very shiny paper backing? The stuff is called “release paper.” It’s the perfect type of paper to stick Leukotape to before cutting it into shorter strips.

Cut the strips into 3-4 inch strips, that you could use to cover your heels
Cut the long strips into 3-4 inch strips, that you could use to cover your heels

Cut the long strips into 3-4 inch strips, that you could use to cover your heels, for instance. You can cut these down further and shape them in the field if you carry a very small pair of scissors.

To store these strips of Leukotape, you can simply stack them and slip them into a sandwich baggie inside your first aid kit. They stay good for a long time with the stickiness intact, and are much lighter and convenient to use this way. Do check them annually however, because they do lose their stickiness eventually and should then be replaced.

See also:

Written 2015. Updated 2017.

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19 comments

  1. A much better solution is kitchen wax paper — lighter than label backing, at least 10X cheaper, plus you don’t generate as much waste as you do having to discard the unused labels.

    • Paul- Do NOT do this if you want usable Leukotape on the trail. The shit is SO sticky, that it will stick to your wax paper and be rendered unusable. This has been encountered by yours truly. In fact, I don’t use any backing at all with this stuff. I take it off the roll, and the re-roll it around a cut-down lollipop stick or something like that.

      • Agree. One reason I use Kinesiotape is that it already comes with a backing. I wait for someone at work to send a box FedEx, and grab the backing to the mailing envelope or shipping paperwork. Use it for Tyvek tape I keep for shelter repair, but could use for Leukotape.

    • That’s exactly what I was wondering Paul, I’ve lots of that in the kitchen pantry.

  2. I wholeheartedly concur with Paul O.’s comment about generating unnecessary waste. Other possible options are to repurpose the siliconized backing paper from postage stamps or from the address labels that charitable organizations sometimes include in their mailings. They’re basically the same thing as the Avery release liner. It’s what I use for my Leukotape, and I was an Avery employee for 35 years!

  3. I’m in the sign business and recycle loads of release liner from vinyl film used in graphics. Your local sign shop will probably give you a lifetime supply just for asking.

  4. The tape comes from the factory wrapped around itself, I don’t deviate much from this. I cut the bottom 2″ of a 1 quart freezer bag, wrap the tape around the outside(as many times as you’d like), then turn the bag inside out to protect the tape.

  5. I’ll just keep using duct tape from the outside of my water bottle for blister prevention.

  6. This is SO smart! Thank you Philip for the idea, and for others here in the comments for additional modifications. You bet I will be using this on my next trip :)

  7. Wax paper from the kitchen will also work

  8. Leukotape is great. I’ve always just wrapped some around a highlighter cap, which has worked really well. It’s still just as sticky as if you take it directly off the roll, easy to use, and very light.

  9. So you clarify the difference between Leukotape and Kinesiotape. I’ve always used Kinesiotape since it wraps around the foot with no gaps since it stretches. Why non-stretch Leukotape?

  10. Try wrapping it around an old creditcard,It will peel off much easier,It is easier to manipulate &is easier to transport/store,as well,the Creditcard also serves as an Xlnt scraper for clean-up,thorns,etc.,burns well for signalling purposes,Multi-use Item!

  11. I just wrap around my mini lighter. I’ve got to carry that anyways.

  12. I use Micropore tape. Hypoallergenic, etc. SAme problem, good tip!

  13. Great video Phil I love this tape. I always pretreat areas that are prone to hotspots. On my first 10 Day section hike it stayed on the whole time. It ended up being the cleanest part of my body

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