Eczema is a skin disorder that you are born with, it is hereditary. So you can thank your mom or dad for that one! Eczema can rear it’s head in many forms – dandruff, extreme red face after a shower and it doesn’t return to normal complexion for a long time, dry itchy skin that can get really painful, blisters with or without scabbing, itchy rashes, scaling skin. As a baby, if you had cradle cap that is also a form of eczema. Unfortunately you will never be able to get rid of it. But you can do things to help it, or possible make it disappear all together.
What to avoid? Eliminating these things will help with the redness, dryness, inflammation and overall appearance of your skin.
- Diet helps to control eczema. Foods you want to try to avoid: Sugar, Alcohol, Caffeine, Chocolate, Dairy and any foods that you are allergic to. I know this diet is difficult! These are my favorite foods and I want to eat them all the time! Try having a smaller portion of each of these you are eating, or don’t eat them as often. Having your favorite dessert once a week or a glass of wine won’t send your skin into a dark hole of eczema and never return.
- Reduce stress, anxiety, depression and nervousness.
- Don’t scratch or itch.
- Avoid wearing irritating clothing.
- Avoid extreme temperatures. This includes too hot of showers, or extreme climates (I realize where you live is some times unavoidable).
- Drinking lots of water. Hydrating from the inside is extremely helpful!
- Eating vegetables and fruits.
- Shower as quickly as possible in luke warm water.
- Use mild soap.
- Lots of moisturizer, body lotion, creams, etc.
- Omega 3 fatty acids help with inflammation.
- Get a house humidifier.
If you have eczema you are most likely putting on creams, lotions all the time. It’s important to put on products that will be helping your skin. So many products claim to be “moisturizing” but in fact they have alcohol and fillers that will dry your skin out more. And, never use cortisone creams to get rid of your eczema. Cortisone thins out your skin. Raise your hand if you want thin skin, anyone?
What do I use? I have eczema and it is an ongoing daily battle to keep it “unflared” (is that a word, I think I just made it one). I have several different lotions and creams that I use throughout the day. In the morning I use either a Lush body lotion or Juice Beauty Green Apple lotion. I want something to soak in fast so I can quickly get dressed for the day. Then after my shower (I shower late morning/ mid day) I apply FAB Ultra Repair Cream. This stuff is amazing!!!!!!!! It’s thick and creamy, packed full of good ingredients and it soaks in very quickly. It also immediately reduces any redness in my skin. I should also mention that in the shower I use Lush Olive Branch shower gel. It’s extremely gentle and isn’t stripping my skin. Then at night it’s time to load on the thick stuff. I use whipped raw shea butter. Click here for my blog on how to make it (there are before/after pictures of my eczema). I put on so much that I’m sticking to the sheets. In the morning it’s all soaked in and my skin is much softer. I also sleep with a humidifier next to the bed pointed right at me. Extreme I know!
I find that if I keep up this routine my eczema never gets terribly out of control. If I forgot to apply something for an entire day, that’s when I get itching, flaky skin that can turn into bleeding and scabbing (sorry for that description!). In the summer time (or if I’m vacationing in Florida) I do not have to apply so much to my skin. I typically apply something in the morning and something at night.
Eczema is a difficult thing to live with. I know there have been many times that I have had to wear long sleeves just to cover it up. Then I started this routine and now my arms have a more clear and smooth complexion.