Best Adhesive Bandages

Accidents happen, even when we're being careful. Here are the best adhesive bandages to cover your minor wounds, scrapes, and cuts.

We’ve all experienced cuts, burns and scrapes, whether it’s while cooking, gardening or just playing around. But no matter the size or type of wound, to promote healing and avoid an infection, it always needs to be cleaned out properly and covered with an adhesive bandage.

A good adhesive bandage covers your wound without it sticking to the cut or burn, and provides ventilation to promote healing. The bandage should be made from a flexible material that moves with your skin so you can go about your daily routine.

Luckily, when it comes to adhesive bandages, there’s a lot to choose from, so stocking up is easy. And because a cut can happen on any part of your body, you’re going to need a variety of shapes and sizes to take care of everything from the littlest boo-boo to a major scrape.

We feature some of the best adhesive bandages you can purchase online. Read on to find that ones that suit your needs so you’ll always be prepared when an accident happens.

Best Bulk Pack: American White Cross 28855 Adhesive Bandages

If you have a house full of kids, then you know all about the multitude of tiny scrapes and cuts that occur during a typically active day. Every little abrasion needs to be properly cleaned and covered with an adhesive bandage to protect it from getting dirty and infected. Of course, a kiss and a hug help, too.

This bulk box of 1,500 adhesive bandages from American White Cross is just the ticket to make sure you will always have one on hand when needed. The highly absorbent non-stick pads will protect a wound without sticking to it. Made of sheer plastic, the individually wrapped bandages are transparent on the skin, so your little one won’t even know it’s there.

Latex-free, the bandages are ideal for anyone with sensitivities and have ultrasonic micro perforations, so you won’t be seeing any wet and wrinkly skin associated with too much moisture under a bandage. The bandages are all the same size, measuring one-inch wide by three inches long. With so many in the box, you won’t have to worry about running out any time soon.

Pros:

  • Non-stick pads
  • Large quantity
  • Perforations for ventilation
  • Latex-free

Cons:

  • Only one size bandage
  • Large quantity may not be for everyone

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Best Variety Pack: Care Science Antibacterial Fabric Adhesive Bandages

Cuts and burns can happen to any part of your body, from your little finger or big toe to your elbow or knee. In each of these scenarios, you’re going to need a good adhesive bandage that is the correct size to cover the wound.

This 200-count box of bandages will cover most of your tiny to small cuts that can happen every day. You’ll find three different sizes to cover cuts on fingers, arms, legs and knees. There are 25 that are one inch wide by three inches long; 35 that measure ¾-inch wide by three inches long; and 40 that are 5/8-inch wide by 2.25 inches long.

These adhesive bandages are made from ‘memory-weave’ fabric that is comfortable and flexible, so they bend and flex with your skin as you move. The quilted pad is designed to cushion a painful wound, and it won’t stick to the cut, so it won’t hurt when you’re ready to remove it. Plus, the bandage will stay on for up to 24 hours without peeling or falling off.

Pros:

  • Three different sizes to accommodate different sized wounds
  • Made from a flexible fabric that moves with your skin
  • Soft, quilted pad to cover wound
  • Does not stick to wound

Cons:

  • Will come off if wet
  • Cloth edges tend to fray

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Best Anti-Bacterial Bandage: All Health Antibacterial Sheer Adhesive Pad Bandages

Sometimes you need a little more when it comes to a cut or scrape – a more spacious size and a bit more protection. These adhesive bandages from All Health are not only extra large for that big scrape on a knee or arm, they also have an anti-bacterial coating on the pad to aid in healing and reduce the chance of infection.

These bandages are made of soft, flexible material with a non-stick pad, and are designed to seal the skin on all four sides to really keep the wound clean. Each bandage measures three inches by four inches, and the pad is coated with benzalkonium chloride to kill bacteria and prevent infection.

These large sterile bandages are ideal to protect and treat minor cuts, scrapes, blisters, or burns on knees, elbows, shins and arms, and you don’t have to purchase a separate anti-bacterial cream. Just clean the wound well before covering it with the bandage.

Pros:

  • Pads are coated with 1% benzalkonium chloride, an anti-bacterial
  • Bandages are made of soft, flexible material
  • Large size 3 inches by 4 inches
  • Seals the skin on all four sides to keep dirt out of wound

Cons:

  • Some people can be sensitive to benzalkonium chloride and experience a skin reaction
  • More expensive than adhesive bandages without an anti-bacterial added

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Best Fun Designs and Colors: Welly Bandages – Handy Bandies

Getting a cut, a burn, a scrape or other minor wound on your fingers or toes is never funny, but the adhesive bandage you choose to cover it with can at the very least, make you smile. Kids especially don’t like to be reminded of their pain, no matter how fleeting it was, so using a colorful adhesive bandage over the wound may help them to forget their ‘boo-boo’. It also may mean they will keep the bandage on longer.

These flexible fabric adhesive bandages from Welly are a fun assortment of different sizes, colors and designs. You will not find a transparent or ‘skin colored’ bandage but instead, have fun choosing between black, blue and pink, and stripes, polka dots and plaid. There are also three different shapes to cover a variety of cuts and body parts – long, H-shaped and butterfly bow.

Okay, so color and design do not necessarily make for a good bandage, but in this case, you will get fun aesthetics and functionality. These bandages seal on all four sides to keep out germs and dirt, and are made from a flexible fabric that moves when you do, ensuring a secure fit. And since they come in a cute but sturdy tin, the package won’t get crushed with use and is easy to stack in the medicine cabinet or cupboard.

These adhesive bandages are waterproof and are available in an assortment of fun patterns such as tie-dye, ice-cream, nautical and monster patterns, to name a few.

Pros:

  • Made from flexible fabric
  • Tin contains an assortment of sizes and designs
  • Waterproof
  • Latex-free

Cons:

  • Fabric edges may tend to fray

Best Large Size: JJ CARE Waterproof Adhesive Island Dressing 6” x 6”

For a really big cut or wound, you’re going to need a larger adhesive bandage with a pad that completely covers and protects your injury without any of the sticky adhesive touching the wound.

The bandages in this pack of 25 measure 6 inches by 6 inches and are individually wrapped. Each one has a soft, breathable inner gauze patch that measures 4 inches by four inches that conforms to your wound and provides a protective barrier against dirt and infection. The center pad is super absorbent and will not stick to your wound.

These latex-free bandages are suitable for lightly draining wounds, pressure ulcers, bedsores, leg and foot ulcers, skin tears, cuts and burns. Made from silicone foam, the bandages provide a moist healing environment and help reduce scarring. Larger wounds do happen, so it’s a good idea to be prepared and keep a box of these in your cupboard.

Pros:

  • Larger 6 inch by 6-inch size
  • Made from silicone foam with a gauze pad
  • Latex free
  • Waterproof

Cons:

  • Size and shape not ideal for fingers or toes

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What to look for:

Most people are familiar with adhesive bandages and probably have a box or two safely stashed away in a kitchen or bathroom cupboard. Because what’s life without some cuts and scrapes along the way, right? While choosing adhesive bandages seems like a no-brainer, there are actually a few things to consider before deciding which kind to purchase. Before you stock up on more, or even buy your first box – or two – here are some factors to consider so you can be sure the ones you buy will do the job right when the time comes.

Size: Like people, cuts and scrapes comes in all sizes, so you want to make sure the adhesive bandages you have on hand are the right size for the wound. Why is this important? Because the last thing you want is the sticky part to touch your cut, burn or scrape, which will likely happen if it is too small to cover the wound correctly. Conversely, a bandage that is too large, especially on a finger or toe, will over-lap and bunch up, creating an unfriendly environment for the cut, resulting in a slower healing process. Since adhesive bandages come in so many shapes and sizes, the solution to matching one with a specific injury is to either keep a few boxes of different-sized adhesive bandages on hand, or find a brand that offers a variety of sizes and shapes in one box.

Anti-bacterial versus plain: It’s not uncommon that after cleaning a wound, you may want to put on an anti-bacterial ointment before covering it with a bandage. The ointment can work to prevent infection. However, there are some adhesive bandages that have a gauze center pad that is coated in an anti-bacterial agent, usually one percent benzalkonium chloride. These are very convenient to have on hand if you have run out of ointment, or don’t typically keep a tube in the house. The downside to an anti-bacterial bandage is that some people could be sensitive to the added ingredient and get a reaction, which can range from itchiness on the site to the area becoming red and swollen. If you have any doubts, then it’s best to use a plain bandage and purchase a separate anti-bacterial ointment that you know you or your family members will not react to.

Functionality: There’s no use purchasing adhesive bandages if they don’t do a proper job of protecting your wound. Aside from them being the correct size to fully cover a cut, scrape or burn, a bandage should firmly stick to the surface of your skin, and stay on for as long as you’d like it to. Some poorly made adhesive bandages that claim to do the job will stick for awhile, but then will fall off before your cut is properly closed, or even beginning to heal. This is not only annoying, but wasteful, and you will end up spending more money in the long run replacing easily lost bandages.

Although a bandage should adhere well, it should not be so sticky that it pulls the skin or hurts to take off. And if you spend a lot of time in the water, whether it’s bathing, washing dishes or swimming, consider looking for a brand of adhesive bandages that is waterproof.

Photo credit: andriano.cz/Shutterstock

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