Best Budget: Cetaphil Eczema Soothing Moisturizer
Courtesy of Walmart
May not be effective for severe eczema
Not suitable for those sensitive or allergic to oat
Studies have shown that oats soothing properties can help treat itchiness in dry skin and help reduce inflammation in skin conditions such as eczema. This National Eczema Associationapproved Cetaphil lotion contains 1 percent colloidal oatmeal that helps relieve skin irritation.
It also has creamy but non-greasy consistency thats soothing and hydrating without feeling tacky on the skin. Its a great budget-friendly option for those looking for an effective but still lightweight skin protectant. Its paraben-, fragrance-, and steroid-free and has been endorsed by the National Eczema Association as gentle for eczema-prone skin.
Price at time of publish: $16
Active Ingredient: Colloidal oatmeal | Scent: Fragrance-free | Usage: Can be used as often as needed or as recommended by doctor
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Gold Bond Eczema Relief
- Doesn’t stop the itch as fast as others
- Issues with pump bottle reported
This thick and creamy lotion is formulated with two percent colloidal oatmeal to help skin heal, along with seven moisturizers that include soothing aloe vera, jojoba oil, shea butter, ceramides and vitamins.
With Shaquille ONeal as their pitchman, its hard not to like Gold Bond products to begin with, but this eczema relief lotion is a real boon for those who suffer from the embarrassment, pain and itching of eczema.
This lotion also features ginger root extract which has been lauded for being rich in antioxidants to help prevent free radical damage. Its also known to improve skins elasticity. In a clinical study, eight out of ten eczema sufferers experienced significant improvements in dryness, scaliness, and rough patches with twice daily use, while nine in ten saw reduced redness.
Gold Bond also makes an Eczema Hand Relief Cream with a skin protecting formula and it comes in a convenient tube. And if you have both eczema and psoriasis, try the Gold Bond Ultimate Psoriasis Relief Cream.
Other Natural Remedies For Eczema
The following natural remedies may also help ease eczema symptoms:
- Apple cider vinegar. The acidity and antimicrobial effects of apple cider vinegar may relieve symptoms of eczema. However, the high concentration of acid can irritate or burn sensitive skin, so use caution.
- Omega-3 supplements. Taking omega-3 fish oil supplements may boost the immune system and prevent flare-ups.
- Vitamin D. These supplements may help prevent eczema symptoms.
- Probiotics. Regularly taking probiotics may also help prevent eczema flare-ups.
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Yoga Qigong And Tai Chi
Yoga, qigong and tai chi are all examples of ancient mind-body practices that combine breathing with body movement and meditation to attain focus, clarity and relaxation. Some individuals with eczema believe these gentle exercises have helped them reduce stress, lower inflammation and distract from itch.
Tai chi and qigong are martial art forms that combine graceful movements with diaphragmatic breathing to help circulate vital energy called Qi in order to achieve balance between the body and mind. Yoga is rooted in Ayurveda and based on a Hindu philosophy that combines deep, slow breathing with a series of poses to help achieve balance, focus and inner peace.
What Medications Are Used To Treat Eczema
While there are no medications that cure the condition, the good news is that there are many medications both over the counter and by prescription that can relieve symptoms.
Every individuals eczema is unique, with different triggers and different symptoms. As a result, treatments will vary from one person to another and even from one flare to another. What works for you one time may need to be changed in the future.
Its important to work with your physician on a personalized treatment plan. Then get to know your medications so you understand how to manage your symptoms most effectively. Talk with your doctor or pharmacist about any possible side effects. Read labels carefully and follow dosing and safety instructions.
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Top 5 Most Common Otc Treatments For Eczema
Eczema treatment can go beyond prescribed medication. There are many OTC products which can provide hydration and itch relief, stop some skin types from becoming scaly and prevent skin dryness. Check out these four OTC products and see how they might work with your eczema therapy and treatment plan.
Bacterial Treatments For Eczema
While scientists still dont know exactly what causes atopic dermatitis, they have been exploring the role that the microbiome may play in the disease. People with eczema have unusually high amounts of harmful bacteria on their skin and lower than normal levels of good bacteria.
A potential new approach to treating eczema involves using good bacteria to kill pathogenic bacteria like Staphylococcus aureus, which is commonly found in large quantities on the skin of people with eczema and is known to cause symptom flare-ups. Though such treatments are not yet available to the public, preliminary research is encouraging.
An early study published in JCI Insight found that more than half of a small group of adults treated with Roseomonas mucosa in a spray form experienced improvement in their eczema, with some reporting that they needed less steroid cream to manage their symptoms.
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Occlusives Lock In The Good Stuff
Occlusives are like a sealant, keeping moisture and hydration where they belong in your skin. Without an occlusive, some of that goodness is lost to evaporation. But adding an occlusive on top seals the deal by literally sealing hydration and moisture into place.
Occlusive ingredients good for eczema include:
- Silicone derivatives, like dimethicone.
Vaseline®, which is made of petroleum jelly, is both an emollient and an occlusive. For the most part, its safe to use on eczema. But like other occlusives, petroleum jelly alone wont moisturize your skin.
You have to get the moisture in there first, whether from other ingredients or from water, and then seal it in with a topcoat, Dr. Anthony explains. Thats what we call occlusive therapy.
What To Look For In An Eczema Lotion
Though eczema can be finicky to treat, dermatologists told us that lotions can help make the condition more manageable. There are two main formula types to be on the lookout for: ones that reduce and soothe the symptoms of eczema and ones that work to repair and maintain your skin barrier function.
If you’re looking to get rid of the discomfort associated with eczema, go for humectants like hyaluronic acid, glycerin and panthenol that work to attract and hold water in the skin, according to Kazlouskaya. Emollients like butters, oils and ceramides can also help make the skin smoother by filling in the “gaps” between skin cells, Kazlouskaya explained, and they’re ideal for inflammatory skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis as they can help relieve itchiness, dryness and scaling on the skin. To strengthen your skin barrier, Kazlouskaya said to opt for occlusive ingredients like lanolin, squalane, petrolatum jelly and mineral oil these create a film on the skin’s surface and prevent transepidermal water loss .
One ingredient that’s common among products geared toward healing eczema is colloidal oatmeal. The ingredient, which is made of ground-up oat kernels, helps relieve the common side effects of eczema such as inflammation and itchiness as well as keep your skin barrier intact to prevent future damage and moisture loss. One study found that even low amounts of colloidal oatmeal helped soothe inflammation and strengthen the skin barrier among eczema patients.
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Eczema Coping Tips Beauty Products
Suggestions for using beauty products include:
- Remember that even hypoallergenic cosmetics can irritate your skin. Whenever possible, keep your face free of make-up.
- Avoid perfumes, fragranced skin lotions and strongly scented shampoos.
- When using a new cosmetic, try testing it first on a small, inconspicuous area of skin such as your forearm. If you experience a reaction, dont use the product again.
Best Overall: Aquaphor Healing Ointment
Multiuse: Good as a moisturizer and as an ointment for cuts, scrapes
Not suitable for those sensitive to lanolin
Who else recommends it? Good Housekeeping, The Strategist, and Byrdie all picked Aquaphor Healing Ointment.
What do buyers say? 87% of 62,500+ Amazon reviewers rated this product 5 stars.
We love this ointment as our best overall pick because it’s made with 41 percent petroleum, but also contains glycerin, which has humectant properties that attract water from the dermis and a humid environment into the epidermis. The addition of lanolin in the ingredient list also adds more occlusive benefits for those who are not allergic. A 2017 study indicates that lanolin can reduce water loss through the skin by 20 to 30 percent, so it helps to hydrate and soften the skin.
Aquaphor is a multitasking skin protectant. Its not only a great, thicker moisturizer, it can also be used to relieve dry, chapped lips, and can enhance healing and soothe minor cuts, scrapes, and burns.
Price at time of publish: $14
Active Ingredients: Petroleum | Scent: Fragrance-free | Usage: Apply to the affected area and can be used as often as needed
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Cerave Therapeutic Hand Cream $10
This formulation contains dimethicone, ceramides, hyaluronic acid and ceramides. All of the above ingredients help to lock in hydration and improve the functionality of the skin barrier, Dr. Mack said. I use this personally after hand washing multiple times a day the nongreasy formula makes compliance easy.
Massage And Physical Therapy
One clinical study looking at essential oils for treating children with eczema found that massage with and without essential oils helped improve dry, scaly skin lesions. Children with this scaly, itchy skin problem seem to have less redness, scaling, and other symptoms if they had massage between flares. DO NOT use massage when skin is actively inflamed. The essential oils most often chosen by the mothers in the study included sweet marjoram, frankincense, German chamomile, myrrh, thyme, benzoin, spike lavender, and Litsea cubeba.
In one clinical study, participating in regular group sporting activities for 3 weeks improved eczema symptoms. Exercise may improve symptoms because of the positive impact it has on emotions. Sports should be avoided during the worst stages of an outbreak.
Climatotherapy uses sunlight and water as therapy. The Dead Sea in Israel is known for its healing properties, and many people with eczema go there to sit in the sun and swim in the water. Scientific studies support the benefits. One clinical study looked at the experience of more than 1,500 people with eczema and found that 95% of skin was cleared in people who had stayed at the Dead Sea longer than 4 weeks.
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Ingredients To Avoid If You Have Eczema
Remember: What works well for the general population isnt always best for eczema. There are lots of products that can be hydrating, soothing and overall beneficial to people who have standard dry skin but many of those same products can worsen dry skin caused by eczema.
Dr. Anthony says his eczema recommendations are informed by his work with patients who have contact dermatitis . Skin with eczema is especially sensitive, so although you may not currently be allergic to any of the products he recommends avoiding, it certainly cant hurt to go without them.
For patients with atopic dermatitis, theres more chance of exposure to possible allergens, which can complicate their condition and treatment, he says. So while none of these are absolutes, I usually start with some general rules.
Things To Consider With Otc Products
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration decides whether a medicine is safe enough to sell over the counter. However, using OTC medicines still has potential risks. Some interact with other prescription or OTC medicines, supplements, foods or beverages. Others cause problems for people with certain medical conditions. Be sure to talk to your dermatologist or healthcare provider before taking any OTC medicines for eczema.
Its important to correctly follow directions for OTC medicines and be careful when administering them to children. You should never take OTC eczema drugs for longer durations or in higher doses than the product label recommends.
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How I Healed My Eczema Naturally And Rebalanced My Skin Microbiome
I used to have eczema 24/7 on my face, elbows, knees, arms, and hands. Now, Im eczema free! Learn how I healed my eczema naturally.
Let me start off by saying that my journey to fully healed eczema was a long one. Great strides have been made with lots of effort, patience, and perseverance. I previously had eczema 24/7 on my face, elbows, knees, arms, and hands. Now, Ive been eczema free for three years!
The methods I explain in this blog also helped me to heal my acne. I had acne on my back, chest, forehead, and along my hairline and now I get a pimple maybe just three times a month.
Skin Barrier Repair Creams
Skin barrier repair creams are available by prescription and over the counter. They are infused with lipids and ceramides, which are naturally occurring substances found in healthy skin barriers that skin with eczema may lack. The lipids and ceramides found in skin barrier moisturizers form a protective layer on the skin to help lock in moisture while keeping out irritants. This allows eczema skin to heal and become more resistant to symptoms, including burning, dryness and itch.
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Eczema Treatment: 13 Ways To Find Relief
While there is no cure for eczema, there are a variety of non-invasive eczema treatment options that can provide relief during a flare-up and some that may prevent its onset. These can include corticosteroids, but the following home eczema treatment options may be best.
1. Light Therapy/Phototherapy
According to the National Eczema Association, phototherapy helps to calm inflammation, reduces itching, increases vitamin D production and helps fight bacteria on the skin. Adding 1015 minutes a day of sun exposure, particularly during an eczema flare, can provide relief and potentially speed healing.
2. Vitamin D
In addition to increasing sun exposure, supplementing withvitamin D rich foods like cod liver oil, sardines, salmon, eggs and raw milk may help prevent eczema in children and adolescents. Ideally, during a flare you will get 2,000-5,000 IU daily if your sun exposure is low, consider boosting your intake with a high-quality supplement. Preliminary research shows that low vitamin D levels during pregnancy and during childhood may increase the risk for developing eczema.
Because dry skin is both a cause and symptom, it is imperative to moisturize affected areas at least twice a day. Coconut oil is the perfect moisturizer for eczema sufferers. This eczema treatment is antibacterial and anti-fungal, with antimicrobial properties that provide soothing relief, and may speed healing.
4. Treat the Mind and Body
5. Dead Sea Salt Baths
6. Cool, Wet Compresses
Eczema Can Be Debilitating
A list of symptoms doesnt begin to capture what the experienceof living with eczema is like. The itching and discomfort that comes with itcan be so intense that it keeps people up at night, leaving themexhausted and unable to function during the day. Symptoms may be so acute thattheyre all the person thinks about, which can hinder their relationships andwork life. Others may feel discouraged to go out in public becausetheyre self-conscious of how their skin looks.
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How To Use Emollients
Use your emollient all the time, even if you’re not experiencing symptoms.
Many people find it helpful to keep separate supplies of emollients at work or school, or a tub in the bathroom and one in a living area.
To apply the emollient:
- use a large amount
- do not rub it in smooth it into the skin in the same direction the hair grows
- after a bath or shower, gently pat the skin dry and apply the emollient while the skin is still moist to keep the moisture in
You should use an emollient at least twice a day if you can, or more often if you have very dry skin.
During a flare-up, apply generous amounts of emollient more frequently, but remember to treat inflamed skin with a topical corticosteroid as emollients used on their own are not enough to control it.
Do not put your fingers into an emollient pot use a spoon or pump dispenser instead, as this reduces the risk of infection. And never share your emollient with other people.
Vanicream Moisturizing Skin Cream $14 Original Price: $16
As one of Dr. Chans favorites for those with allergies especially, Vanicreams Moisturizing Cream comes in an easy-to-use pump, is fragrance-free and is non-comedogenic, so it wont clog your pores.
The lotion formulation makes this product cosmetically elegant for the face, while still being effective to minimize eczema flares, Dr. Mack said.
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What Should I Expect With Phototherapy
During your visit, you will apply a moisturizing oil to the skin and stand in a large cabinet undressed except for underwear and goggles to protect the eyes. The light-emitting machine will be activated for a short time usually just seconds to minutes and it will either treat the entire body or just certain exposed areas. It may take one or two months of steady treatment with phototherapy to start to see improvement in eczema symptoms, and at that point, the frequency of the visits can sometimes be reduced or stopped for a period to see if the eczema is in remission.
Potential side effects of phototherapy include:
- Sunburn and skin tenderness
- Premature skin aging