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  1. says

    A potato, huh? Nice. No one in our family has ever been bitten by a brown recluse but if it ever happens we’ll have something to try.

  2. says

    my four year old walked up next to me just as i was scrolling through your post and he actually jumped back a little when he spotted those spiders! i’ve heard of using a potato on a mild burn, so guess potatoes have a lot of uses. thanks for sharing, added this to my “emergency preparedness” board on pinterest just in case…

    • Jennie P. says

      Sorry, off topic from spider bites, but I just had to say..If you get a burn, don’t use a potato, try egg whites! Oh my goodness, I’ve tried all kinds of burn remedies and egg whites are the only thing to work miracles. I probably wouldn’t use them on any open-wound burns, but I’ve used them on myself for all of my burns mild and more severe. It may take a few eggs, but it removes all pain and even stops blistering and scarring. You can either soak in egg whites or put egg whites on a cloth and apply to the burn. I now only use egg whites for burns–raw egg whites (not cooked), hopefully nice and cold from the fridge which gives an added cooling sensation. Most burns I’ve had stop hurting completely after 15-20 minutes. If the burn is more severe it might take a little longer. I swear by them and tell everyone I know!

      • Tiffany says

        THANK YOU JENNIE! I actually burned myself Saturday night making the bacon for the broccoli salad. It swelled up and stung for HOURS. Egg whites for burns is now permanently engrained!

        The upside to having a burn would be making a key lime pie with the yolks! 😉

    • Tiffany says

      Wow – I haven’t heard of this yet. We always have bananas on hand and with the rate we occur spider bites, I’m sure we’ll have a chance to try it!

  3. says

    I hated seeing spiders in my e-mail.
    But- we do have brown recluse spiders. We’ve had the exterminator come and they still show up now and then.

    I’m glad to know about the potato.

    What we’ve used is Redmond’s clay from the health food store. It’s a gray powder that you mix with a little water to make a paste. Put it on the bite, cover it with a band-aid, and repeat daily until it heals. So far, we haven’t had to see a doctor.

    • Tiffany says

      Forgive me Laura! Redmond’s clay… Making a note of that in case the potato doesn’t work for all spider bites. So nice saving a trip to the doctor, and the co-pay, and the prescription cost!

  4. says

    Oooh! I don’t hope to have a spider bite any time soon, but it’s tempting to want to try the experiment. 😉 *writes on notepad*

    Raw Apple Cider Vinegar with raw honey is fantastic for bee stings! And raw honey is great for burns!


    • Tiffany says

      Another burn idea – thank you! I don’t think I can recommend experimenting with spiders Dolly, lol, but I won’t say anything if you wanted to go for a random hike with a potato and a knife if your back pocket!

  5. says

    Oh! I wrote that vinegar *and* honey is good for bee stings–I meant to delete the ‘honey’. We only use apple cider vinegar–usually we’ll soak a washcloth in the vinegar, put some ice inside the cloth, and put it on the sting. The relief is amazing! 😀

  6. says

    came here from butter believer, nice share! i was just on beach vaca and got my first jellyfish sting, it HURT bad, right on my inner thigh so every time i took a step, friction! i know kefir and honey are both good for healing the skin, and as i was fresh out of meat tenderizer in my beach bag, i did have lassi (honey/kefir) in the cooler as a refreshing beverage. i applied it on my leg 3 times and after 4 hours it didn’t hurt anymore. i love kefir. and honey. raw cider vinegar would have worked too, as both vinegar and kefir are both scoby ferments, they have the same healing properties. i guess i should photography my wound and write a post about it!

  7. says

    WOW! This is amazing. Thank you for linking it up to Mommy Solutions. This is a keeper! I hope I never have to try it but if I do, now I know!

    I’m featuring you on my facebook page.

    Have a great weekend, Crystal

    • Tiffany says

      Growing up in TX, I never ran across spiders (fire ants on the other hand…) so I hope you don’t either! Thanks for the FB shout out!

  8. says

    I am going to have to give it a try! I live in Cali. too and the d**n spiders bite me at night while I sleep. Happens at least once a week. We’ve sprayed the perimeter of the house but don’t want to spray the interior.

    Popped in from Flaunt it Friday.

  9. Wendy M says

    I have used a slice of raw onion on spider bites four times and and it works well too. The only down side to this remedy is that you temporarily smell like a hamburger. :)

  10. Emily says

    I have two friends who have been bitten by brown recluses and they used black tea bags! They worked great, healed them up in about a week. =)

  11. says

    I’m a big believer in the Aloe Vera plant & I have them everywhere. Supposedly, the larger, older leaves have the most potent juice, but they’re all good. Especially good for mosquito bites. We, as people, just need to figure out that everything we need for healing is right here on this earth that God gave us. We just have to find it, right?

    Ice is my other *go-to*. Sometimes I use both ice & aloe vera. It never fails to work on burns, bites, scratches, shallow cuts, and more. I haven’t used triple antibiotic cream in years.

    That said, I was bitten by a wolf spider a couple of years ago. Not only did it bruise my entire forearm, there was also a huge white *knot* (or bump) in the center. Fearing that I’d been bitten by a Brown Recluse, I ordered a kit from a web site that sells kits to effectively eliminate the necrosis of a BR bite. It consists mainly of activated charcoal that you add a couple of drops of water to, to make a paste. You apply that, wrap it in plastic wrap, then wrap in an Ace bandage, and change twice a day. It took like 5 weeks to disappear & I never had any necrosis. Here’s the link to that post on my other blog:

    • Tiffany says

      Yes, we do need to find it. And coming along YEARS after so many people have pushed it aside makes our job a bit more difficult. I think someone else mentioned activated charcoal too. I love having all these holistic and non-medicinal options! Thanks!

  12. Lori says

    I am so happy to find these remedies! I was raised on natural medicine and cannot take drugs. I am allergic to spider bites and get them nightly, as many as 15-20 bites (they also leave scars). The major problem is anaphylaxis. I have found using honey daily builds the immune system, and homeopathic tissue salts and Vodka (yuck) help ride out the shock. Also keep regular toothpaste (not whitening!) with me at all times, apply topically, it draws out the poison.

    • Tiffany says

      Wow Lori, those spiders must really love you! Thanks for the tip on the toothpaste. I hope the potato works for you too!

  13. Lori says

    Tiffany, I forgot to mention Rescue remedy. It comes in cream for topical use and liquid drops or spray to put under your tongue in case of allergic reaction. Good luck with your spiders!

  14. Kimberly says

    I was bit by a brown recluse spider. I was bit on my elbow and the spot of the bite was very red and my whole arm swelled up. I took the what looked infected spot ofe bite and put a Alice of raw potato on the bite and after a few minutes would sqeeze the venom out. This worked. I went to the doctor anyways because the bite being right over my bone. But using a potato on a spider bite, I know the starch will drawl out the poisin.

    • Tiffany says

      Congrats on healing your own spider bite Kimberly! A shame potatoes don’t offer us more healing from the inside, lol!

  15. nici r says

    I have heard that if you get a splinter or any type of wood into your skin that you couldn’t get out, putting a potato over the spot would draw that piece of wood out. I didn’t know it helped with spider bites. So when I got a spider bite yesterday, I saw this post and am putting a potato on it now. Thanks!

    • Tiffany says

      Wow, I hadn’t heard of that Nici! I’m sorry to hear about your spider bite, but happy to hear that you had a potato on hand. Happy healing!

  16. Wilma Haken says

    We have funnel webs and red back spiders in Australia. Highly poisonous. I would recommend going to a doctor or hospital immediately. Please don’t use potatoes, or toothpaste on these bites, you will die in a couple of hours. Wilma

  17. Alex Chung says

    Just so everyone knows if you have a bad complexion or anything egg whites will clean your skin!!!
    I don’t know why but when I had pimples my mom put an egg to my face and within a few minutes I could see the dirt and other gross stuff on the white!! It works for spider bites too

  18. Mr Butterworth says

    you should have tried fasting at the same time. when the body doesn’t have to digest it can re-direct all energy towards healing regenerating. Sheesh bitten 3 times by a Recule, -just aweful!

  19. Kate says

    Very interesting article. I found your blog while searching for mole removal with ACV – great results you had, and I hope to have also! I then saw your blog on brown recluse spider bites and noticed you live in California, where you received these bites, it would appear. I live in TN where I’ve KILLED over 45 (if I sees ’em, I kills ’em) of them (the most of any spider I’ve ever killed. I don’t mind spiders in general, in fact I leave all but the toxic ones alone, but I won’t tolerate the BR (as fascinating as they are) since they can pack a walloping bite even if they don’t typically inject all their toxin when pressed to do so). I said all of that to say, I’ve done quite a bit of research on the little buggers (again, fascinating as far as spiders go, but I’m a bit of a nerd) as I’ve killed my fair share of them (TN is endemic with them) but have NEVER been bit. I’ve seen them in every home I’ve ever been in (from brand new 16,000 sq ft mansions to tiny lake cabins) and yet know of only two people who’ve been bit, and at that after blindly reaching into a cardboard box that had been in garage storage for awhile. We know better to do this (and in CA you do too for concern of Black Widow spiders). And those who were bit were fine – no skin melting away, etc. Here is an interesting article you might wish to read in regard to Brown Recluse being in California. I used to live in CA, never saw a BR, though did see plenty of Black Widow spiders. Here in Tennessee we feel about BR’s as you do about BW’s = be alert but not surprised or afraid of them. The reason I am posting this comment is because of what IS (or rather seems to be) endemic in CA and that is Staph or MRSA. It can look rather like a spider (BR) bite. My brother now lives in CA, grew up in TN – never was bit by a BR (and he had every opportunity – being all boy, working in the yard, working in the garage, etc) but has had MRSA four times already in a short order. I would imagine you could try the garlic and potato remedy on MRSA and it would hopefully work, but knowing the difference between a spider bite and MRSA is important also, I think, and thus the reason for my comment. To your health!

    • Tiffany says


      I must thank you not only for your knowledge, but for taking the time to type it all out for us! Thank you for making us aware of MRSA and how it could resemble a spider bite!

      As for your spider killings – dude. You need some notches in a belt or something girl!

      Funny you mention the cardboard box in a garage issue…. I had always wondered why he was bit and none of the rest of us were. We figured it was his wetsuit, but it could have been that he was the only one who went into a small storage closet in our carport at the time. I believe that’s also where he hung his wetsuit… I’ll have to be sure to point this out to my husband. 😉

      Thanks again Kate! Best of luck on your mole removal AND keep staying away from those spiders! :) ~Tiffany

  20. jade says

    raw bacon will take the heat out of a burn. and for bee stings use a raw onionn itkll immediately take the sting out of it!

  21. says

    As child, I noticed how a bag of potatoes left out to long would draw bugs to it. So I figured there was some healing agent in it. I don’t why but I did. So one day I got a huge bump on my arm, I taped a piece of potatoe on it over night, when I woke up, the potatoe had drawn out the poison and my arm was better.

  22. Barbara says

    a lady mentioned using preparation H on the bite. I put it on my husbands bite on his back shoulder and it’s the 3rd day. When I changed the bandage this morning, the swelling was gone and the redness has shrank and lightened. Puss has been coming out also. It’s looking better. Tonight, there was a couple small puss areas but nothing bad. I put a needle in them to drain any poison out and reapplied more prep h. Looks like it’s working!!

  23. curtis taylor says

    I have an awefull recluse bit on my leg.if I could post a pic I would.i am trying the potato thing an really hope it works..

  24. Ben Borkovitz says

    Nice site! Enjoying reading all the entries. Was walking barefoot in an apple orchard and stepped on a rotting apple that was inhabited something that gave me a good sting on my second toe!

    I usually use onion for this, and did yesterday, but the area really heated up a lot last night and the onion was starting to feel irritating. Put honey on it, still irritating. Swelling a bit too.

    Am trying potato now, and it feels good so far.

    Does anyone know if elevating a foot is helpful or harmful in cases like this?

    Thanks for your site,

    • Tiffany says

      Happy to hear the spider bite is looking better Ben! I don’t know if elevating would make much difference. Mr. Crumbs had his leg elevated when he was laying down, but most of the time he was sitting or walking… so it’s hard to know if it really mattered in the end. :)

  25. Mikaela says

    Does the potato treatment work with only brown recluse spider bites or does it work with other spiders’ bites too?

    • Mr. Crumbs says


      We’re not sure if it works with other spider bites.

      This happened to be the 4th time I was bitten by a brown recluse, so I was familiar with the symptoms, and the amount of time it took before scar tissue developed from the poison/venom. In other words, it was a calculated risk :)

      If you’ve been bitten by a spider, you should seek medical attention and not put yourself at risk. Especially if you are unsure what bit you.

      -Mr. Crumbs

      • Dawn says

        The potato also works on black widow bites. I have been bitten twice by a black widow and twice by a brown recluse and each time the bites were completely healed in less than a week. Also a few weeks ago my Grandson had a big bump that came up on his face. It was oozing pus and I told him to put a “tater” on it. He did and in two days and it was all gone!

  26. pete lutz says

    make a wet poltice out of the weed…plantain!!!! for all types of bites and stings…Especially…brs bites!!!..or if in the wilds (outdoors) grab a couple leaves…chew…leave sloppy…hold on bite immediately…for ~ 15 minutes…repeat if necessary….works miracles.

  27. Josie says

    Tiffany, Thank you for posting your remedy about the potato. I got bite by a spider 4 weeks ago, went to the Hospital the Doctor recommended to apply antibiotic ontiment I tryed it for 2 weeks it got a little bit better. Two weeks after that I wrapped aloe vera on it and it got smaller “but it still itched” I ran across your website cut a small wedge of potato and wrapped with the medical tape. The second day it drew out a small sharp fang, its making the bruise look better!! “Thanks for your advice, and may God bless you and Mr. Crumbs” I am saving the fang to show my family and friends.

  28. Justin says

    Hi. Are you sure that bite was from a recluse? There are many variations of recluse w/ various levels of toxin, and other types who have some venom but not dangerous to us–referring to those which usually leave a red itchy area, similar to a mosquito. Could it have been one of these other spiders? Many spiders can carry staff, so a non-recluse bite could deceivingly “seem” like that of a recluse.

    • Tiffany says

      Yep, we’re sure. They’re everywhere out here, and at the time, they were all throughout the shed where my husband kept his wetsuit (which is why HE got bit, but not us). We diagnosed the bite from the spider itself. :)

  29. Cher says

    So did you just see a nasty spider bite and say to yourself, “Gee, I think we’ll tape a potato to my leg and see what happens.” ? What made you think of a potato? Inquiring minds want to know.

    • Tiffany says

      Google. 😉 It was early on, on a Friday night with no access to a doc right away. We figured if it didn’t look better by morning, we’d call him up. Indeed, it looked WAY better!

  30. Ginger M. says

    Tiffany, this post was how I found your blog this past spring. I had been bit by something 7x on my back when I woke up one morning, Seemed like other spider bites I’d had in past, so presumed it was the same. however, I didn’t find your blog and try to the potato until 4-5 days later. The itching was terrible, and I had scratched. Everywhere I scratched, the redness had spread b-c I believe the poison had spread. The heat coming off that area was quite something, not to mention the inflammation. I was also 5 months pregnant at the time and so had my OB check it out on a scheduled check up exactly one week after I woke up w/ said bites. I had no symptoms of being ill, only skin-surface symptoms or I would have consulted a Dr. sooner. Sorry to say, the potato did NOT work, I believe, b-c I didn’t know about it and apply it in the first 24 hours to draw out the poison. The poison had so spread around b-c I scratched and the openings had healed over. I would try it that way next time, though I hope there isn’t one. What did the Dr. say? Well, they were actually quite alarmed at the sight of my skin (email me if you want to see photos) and prescribed me a cortizone anti-itch cream (which I had in my bathroom and used a few times) and a medication for shingles b-c she suspected that, though I told her it was only surface irritation. I decided not to fill the prescription, but to consult my Aromatherapy Instructor and try that, if there was no improvement in 1-2 days, I would fill the prescriptions. What REALLY helped get the inflammation down was straight Lavender Augustifolia and Roman Chamomile essentail oils (per Cynthia Loving at applied on my affected skin every 6 hours for 2 days, then dropped to every 12 hours, then 1xday, 1 week later, it was nearly gone. I Hope this helps other readers!

    • Tiffany says

      Thanks so much for sharing your story Ginger! I think one of the reasons this method worked so well for us is because we caught it early on. My husband was bit on a Friday, and we tried this method that night. At least you were able to find other forms of natural relief through essential oils – what a blessing, and I’m glad it all worked out for the best!

  31. Linda says

    I have had a spider bite on my face just under my eye since last Nov i paid for a private clinic and had to go every day for 3 weeks to clear the infection and dressings etc it spread about 1 inch long 1 of the holes healed but the other 1 keeps flairing up, went again to see a specialist 3 months ago an he said keep putting water on it.was not helping at all so i Google an found your site an others saying about potatoes can help so i tried it an all i can say is thank u so much it looks so much better already in 3 days the redness has decreased and the scar looks like it is closing together more it’s the best it’s ever looked in 8 months of expensive treatment that made very little difference and a simple potato has worked already.i will keep putting it on until the hole heals fingers crossed can’t thank u enough It works

  32. Theresa says

    I have used eucalyptus essential oil to repell and kill Brown Recluse spiders! They HATE the smell of this essential oil. put it on cotton balls etc. and put these in your closets etc. and through out your house. It can get a bit expensive. you have to refresh the cotton balls with this oil every so often. I caught a brown recluse spider under my kitchen sink. so I put it in a jar and put some eucalyptus essential oil on a cotton ball and put that in with the spider and in less than a half hour the brown recluse was dead. The brown recluse also love cardboard boxes!!! so if you pack things in these tape them up well, so no spiders can get in them. and toss in cotton balls with this essential oil for good measure. If you get bit by any non poisonous spider make a paste with bentonite clay and water and put on the bite and cover with bandage. do this 2-3x a day for as long as it takes. the clay will draw out the toxins. I hope this helps someone.

    • Tiffany says

      Very interesting Theresa! I have eucalyptus EO, and might have to put some cotton balls in the place we lounge and sleep (harder to catch with our eyes closed).

  33. Jay says

    Good Morning,

    Great Article!

    I was bit by a spider a few days ago. Before going to the doctor I rubbed a clove of garlic on the bite, the bite went away but my foot continued to swell up and turn red. I did not want to take any antibiotics as I know they are not necessarily good for your gut lining but unfortunately the infection from the bite was traveling up my leg. I decided to go ahead and take the antibiotics to be on the safe side. The doctor prescribed 4 daily for 7 days. So far I have only taken a few and I am not sure if I should continue taking them as I have ready so much negative things about the use of antibiotics.

    When you guys went to the doctor for the previous spider bites did you guys take some other type of medication or were you prescribed antibiotics also?

    The potato remedy sounds like a on the would type treatment do you have any recommendations that should be taken orally to combat the infection/remove the poison from the inside?

    Thank you so much for your help and time I greatly appreciate it


    • Tiffany says

      I think we did this for 3 days before noticing improvement – we saw the bite on a Friday and did it through the weekend.

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