Follow these easy tips to keep eczema flare-ups at bay. By Dawn Chen
Photo: 123RF.com/ Iuliia Kryvko
Itchy, painful eczema flare-ups are nobody’s idea of fun. Here are four skincare tips from Cetaphil on how you can keep those skin irritations to a minimum – no fancy treatments or procedures required!
1. Keep showers short
Sufferers of eczema may feel compelled to thoroughly scrub skin to get all those skin flakes off, but doing so can actually aggravate the condition. Eczema-prone skin is sensitive and delicate, and should be treated with care. Keep your showers to about 5-10 minutes at a go, and always bathe in lukewarm water (hot water can irritate skin). Avoid using anything abrasive (like scrubs or loofahs) too. After your shower, pat – not rub – your skin dry.
2. Apply moisturiser right
The best time to apply your moisturiser is straight after bathing, when skin is still slightly damp. This is supposed to improve skin hydration. The folks at Cetaphil also recommend that eczema sufferers use a moisturiser with filaggrin breakdown products (FBP). FBP is needed for healthy skin, as they help your skin cells hold on to moisture. Unfortunately, a majority of eczema sufferers lack these filaggrin proteins, which results in a weakened epidermal barrier and skin inflammations. If you have eczema, give Cetaphil Restoraderm Skin Restoring Body Moisturizer ($48 for 295ml, government hospital pharmacies) a try as it contains FBP to restore skin’s natural barrier and help it retain moisture.
3. Avoid fragrances
As a general rule, fragranced products tend to contain chemicals that can further aggravate your skin condition. Pick items that are fragrance-free to reduce your risk.
4. Avoid eczema triggers
Common triggers for eczema include heat, sweat and grass. When you exercise, wear breathable cotton clothing to minimise sweat, and consider going for your workout in the early mornings or evenings to avoid the harshest UV rays. Take a quick shower soon after you exercise to keep eczema flare-ups at bay. Makeup or beauty products containing mineral oil can also aggravate skin, so check ingredient lists thoroughly before applying.
For more information on Cetaphil, click here.