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Eczema Friendly Skincare Routine
Can skincare cause eczema?
According to the National Eczema Society, there definitely are certain skincare products that can cause facial eczema, usually targeting sensitive areas like the eyelids and around the mouth. However, if you have not identified which ingredients contain possible irritants to atopic dermatitis, it’s best to stick to skincare products labeled for sensitive skin whether it’s a face wash, body wash, or moisturizer.
Often, those who suffer from eczema will have extra sensitive skin, so harsh skincare and beauty products that contain large amounts of alcohol, strong chemicals, or fragrance can be possible irritants. Makeup is one big potential irritant for plenty of skin types, not just those with contact dermatitis, which is why professionals usually give advice along the lines of sticking to a bare makeup routine or makeup that serves as skincare products. By doing this, you can let your skin breathe even with cosmetics on.
What skincare is good for eczema?
Sticking to a basic skincare routine suited for sensitive skin is the best way to go. Someone who has rosacea or eczema-prone skin shouldn’t further exacerbate their already sensitive face with a boatload of treatments, serums, exfoliators, etc. unless these products are formulated to be friendly for those with eczema or recommended by your dermatologist.
How do I treat eczema flare-ups?
Skincare products that can soothe the symptoms of eczema should also be a staple in any routine. If you experience rosacea or skin redness, flaky skin, or irritated skin, then having a soothing cream on hand might be necessary in order to calm down the skin in times of need.
One important piece of advice when dealing with eczema flares is to resist the urge to irritate your skin further. That means no scratching an itch, no peeling the fakes off, and just get your hands off your skin. If you’re of the skin type that is a little on the sensitive side, then you know your skin health is already a little fragile, so it’s best to be gentle with your skin on all fronts.
The tricky part about dealing with skin like this is always the trial and error when it comes to crafting a routine, but that’s what we’re here to help you with so you don’t suffer alone!
A skincare routine for eczema, according to a fellow eczema sufferer
For those of us whose condition can potentially affect everyday life, having an effective routine is important.
As someone who suffers from frequent flares and has only recently discussed the condition with a dermatologist, having a simple skincare routine is super important. Other dermatologists who suffer from the same condition likewise recommend similar ideas when crafting a regimen for eczema-prone skin. Without further ado, here’s a skincare routine for eczema sufferers:
1. Do Use a Gentle Skin Cleanser
What should I wash my face with if I have eczema?
2. Don’t skip the moisturizer to keep the skin barrier hydrated
Washing our face with a cleanser and water can be super stripping, so it’s vital to moisturize right after to lock in the moisture within our skin barrier. Peter Lio, Assistant Professor of Clinical Dermatology and Pediatrics at Northwestern University, states that this type of product might be the most important of all.
Over-the-counter products and drugstore moisturizers usually work fine for people with eczema, but some of them may not be suited for sensitive skin. To avoid further eczema flare-ups, try to look for a moisturizer with hyaluronic acid. HA is a great dermatologist-recommended substance that binds moisture deep within the skin barrier. You should also watch out for ceramides in moisturizing products. Ceramides are long layers of lipids that naturally occur in our body and help retain moisture within.
3. Do add a soothing cream or serum
Dermatology team TheDermGroup recommends adding niacinamide serum or shea butter into your skincare routines to avoid rashes and protect the skin from an unwanted flare-up. While people who suffer from this condition want to avoid eczema flares in the first place, a soothing balm is super effective in treating persistent symptoms like redness, itchiness, and flakiness. Stocking up on soothing balms is always a good idea when it comes to treating this contact disease, so don’t be afraid to invest.
4. Don’t use harsh actives
Despite some doctors recommending the use of vitamin C and even makeup wipes in a certain article, Everyday Health advises otherwise. Dr. Jessica Wu, MD., emphasizes that retinol, vitamin C, alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) and salicylic acid, while great ingredients for exfoliation, can further aggravate eczema and cause skin to become more irritated.
5. Do use sunscreen
People with sensitive eczema-prone skin could potentially be irritated further by exposure to harmful UV rays. As per usual, sunscreen is a must! Just make sure it’s a product that is formulated for more sensitive types and doesn’t contain something that could potentially be a trigger, such as harmful alcohols.
6. Do try prescription creams
Another important part of having this skin ailment is trying a hand at using a prescription cream. This may come in a topical product such as a dermatologist prescription cream or even a topical corticosteroid cream. Having a product like this is great because it specifically targets eczema in all forms. While people might be intimidated to try them, the studies are pretty unanimous: prescription creams are a great way to treat your skin. Dermatologists will be more than happy to give their patients something to lessen the burden a little, so don’t be afraid to ask questions.
Tips on dealing with eczema
If you also suffer from eczema in places other than your face, then here are some tips to keep in mind:
- Try to use full-cotton clothing. Blended fabric can be a potential irritant to an already sensitive body, so if you can, seek out clothes that are 100% cotton from trusted, high-quality clothing brands.
- Use lotion religiously. After you shower, apply a generous amount of lotion all over the body to seal in moisture and avoid dryness. You may use an oil-based one if preferred, as an oil can be both soothing as well as hydrating. It’s not a bad idea to give that coconut oil a shot.
- Use warm or hot water when showering. If you have access to hot water or lukewarm water, then that is the best way to go. Cold water may aggravate the skin further while also stripping your body of natural oils.
- Be prepared for changes in weather. Since weather is one factor that could possibly affect this skin disease, it’s good practice to anticipate any changes so you’re prepared to relieve the symptoms!
And that’s it! We hope we’ve shared some things to be mindful of when dealing with eczema-prone skin. While there’s no one-size-fits-all routine for skincare products, sticking to the mildest ones can do all sorts of good.
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Joey is an AB Psychology graduate of the University of St. La Salle – Bacolod. Her life’s passions include writing, film, and spending hours on end binge-watching fashion vloggers on Youtube.