Spray for chin rest metal allergy
I've been playing violin for 11 years and have realized I've been allergic to the metal parts of the chin rest. I tried using a leather cover over the metal parts and it worked but I don't like the feeling of the leather on my neck.
Is there any spray/paint I can put on the metal parts to prevent my neck from being in direct contact with the metal?
You could try looking for something you can stick onto the metal parts of the chinrest. Also, you could wear clothing that covers the neck (this is, unfortunately, only plausible in winter), or place a towel between your neck and chinqest.
I'm not allergic to the metal, as far as I know; but I don't want the metal contacting the skin and wouldn't want the feel of leather, either. I use the Strad Pad, which attaches to the CR with a Velcro strip and completely covers the metal brackets. The main advantage I get from this is the additional secure grip between skin and CR cover -- no skin irritation. The pad is easily washable.
Shar has chin rest covers and chin rests with stainless steel brackets. I am guessing you are alergic to nickel. Your brackets are probably nickel plated.
Many people are sensitive to nickel, and even 14K gold can have enough nickel to irritate one's skin. Recently someone told me she 'paints' her jewelry with clear nail polish every few months to protect her skin from the trace nickel in the metal. Perhaps you could 'paint' the metal bracket with clear nail polish.
Replace the clamps with titanium version. Almost no one is allergic to titanium.
Titanium is the first thing you want to do.
I second the nail varnish. But it will ruin the violin varnish, so traed carefully.
Have you tried the Wittner hypoallergenic chin rests? Nice design and I don't think there are any exposed metal parts.
Ditto on the titanium. I developed a rash on my neck from the nickel. Purchased the titanium clamps and the rash went away. You can buy them online and very easy to install.
Tempel (Germany) makes excellent titanium fittings; they are what I use on my violin, both for metal sensitivity and light weight!
Many people, including me, get irritated by the metal parts. Too bad the OP is not comfortable with leather - was that suede leather? That's what I use and it's worked beautifully for me for many years. Anyway, try a variety of cloths. I was also going to recommend the Witner chinrest - but if you don't like the design then you're limited by and to it.
Tempel is nice, as some other premium fitters, but not exactly inexpensive.
Stradpet produces excellent titanium chinrest brackets ranging from $9 to $14.50 (plus a few dollars for shipping) in various models - including the "regular" U-shaped brackets and Hill style brackets. You can purchase them on AliExpress. The quality is comparable to the much more expensive offerings.
Fantastic ... are these titanium jobs *well made*? I can see that there might be benefit to me to have these even though I'm not allergic to nickel, if they indeed have better-quality machining of the screws and other hardware.
I have an allergy to nickel and my doctor suggested putting moleskin or something you would put over a blister on the metal part
Isn't there supposed to be a space between your neck and those metal pieces of the chin rest? I remember learning that they aren't meant to rub your neck (my first teacher told me it's only okay to get a red mark on the collarbone - from the violin resting there, and underneath your chin - from the top of the chin rest.)
Thanks you for the replies!