4. Wash with Moisturizer Instead of Soap
When showering or bathing, use a gentle cleanser or moisturizer rather than soap. Soap works for many people, however, it’s drying and may contain fragrances or dyes that weaken skin. Additionally, you’ll want a moisturizer that is hypoallergenic and free of those ingredients that are harmful or drying to skin like parabens, sulfates, dyes, fragrances, and other additives. There are several brands that carry gentle cleansers that are best for people with eczema. You’ll want to shop around and see what works best for you.
In addition to being careful when choosing bath products, try avoiding other products with added fragrances, harsh chemicals, and other ingredients that may irritate eczema. Many products without these things are labeled as hypoallergenic. In addition to choosing hypoallergenic laundry detergent, soap, and lotion, consider skipping dryer sheets since the lingering fragrance might aggravate dermatitis. Also be aware of anything like cleaning chemicals or dish soap that your hands might come into contact with during the day. Consider wearing gloves if avoiding those products isn’t an option.
5. Consider Wet Wraps to Lock in Moisture
Wet wraps are used to help lock in moisture. Additionally, applying wet wraps over moisturizers gives your skin a chance to really let the moisturizer set in. All you need for wet wraps is wet fabric or gauze. Following a bath, pat your skin dry and apply a layer of moisturizer. Then, wrap wet fabric around irritated areas and follow this with a second wrap that is dry. This type of therapy works because it promotes skin healing, while keeping it protected. The wraps can be left on for several hours, or even overnight.
A study published in the Journal of Clinical Immunology: In Practice showed success when treating dermatitis with wet wraps. This is best for moderate-to-severe symptoms. Additionally, wet wraps are something that can be used with strategies like regular bathing and moisturizing to reduce flare-ups. Something to note is that the wet wraps might feel as if they are making it worse at first. Trust the process, even if it seems it is making you a little itchy. Wet wraps also should not be applied over corticosteroids or other topical medications without the guidance of a doctor.