Winter is here and many people are looking forward to the seasonal change, anticipating holiday get-togethers and some time off from their busy schedule at school or work. But some individuals are not looking forward to one aspect of winter because of the potential for painful skin flare-ups during eczema outbreaks.
That concern shouldn’t stop you from getting the most out of winter this year if you happen to suffer from eczema. Here are winter skincare tips designed to help keep your skin barrier hydrated and healthy all winter long.
About Moisturization and Eczema Skincare During the Winter Months
The best way to ensure relief against eczema flare-ups is to include moisturization in your skincare regimen. What’s so important about hydration?
The skin barrier of people with eczema may be in poor condition, compared to the approximately 90% of the population who do not suffer from this disorder. Eczema patients may experience difficulty with their skin holding in water, as noted by the American Academy of Dermatology Association.
The AADA explained that “children and adults with eczema can actually get drier from a bath unless a moisturizer is applied immediately after the bath.” By applying a natural moisturizer, you are adding an artificial barrier to supplement the natural skin barrier. Doing so not only reduces the amount of water you lose through evaporation from the skin, but it also keeps out unwanted things, such as bacteria or irritating substances.
Keeping Skin Hydrated
A skin barrier that’s damaged often results in people having dry and itchy skin, which is terrible for eczema flare-ups, according to the National Eczema Association.
Many factors contribute to your skin becoming dried out during the coldest months of the year. People are often staying indoors more than usual, in dry conditions because of centralized heating. But cold temperatures and low humidity during winter also contribute to skin discomfort from dehydration.
You may soaps that are harsh to the skin when washing up at places away from home, such as when visiting friends and family for the holidays. Traveling by plane for a celebration can dry out your skin quite a bit.
So, to avoid having painful, dry skin with eczema outbreaks, you’ll want to make hydration a regular part of your day.
The NEA offers tips for optimal hydration. To begin, if your doctor has recommended that you use a prescription medication applied topically, use it according to the instructions ahead of moisturizing your skin.
Select fragrance-free moisturizers that have no dyes, to avoid irritation. When applying a moisturizer, use a clean implement. Otherwise, using your bare hands can contaminate the rest of the moisturizer.
If you happen to apply too much moisturizer and don’t like the tacky feeling of the remaining globs, don’t be tempted to remove it. Just wait a few minutes and your skin will naturally absorb the rest, giving you more protection.
Don’t let hydrating skincare become an afterthought. Prepare by putting out your favorite moisturizer, so that you see it as soon as you step out of the shower or bathtub. It’s a good idea to apply the moisturizer within a few minutes after bathing. If not, your skin barrier will dry out faster.
You wash your face (and probably your hands) more frequently than you take showers or baths. This means you will want to keep moisturizer near each sink in the house so you can use it after washing up, such as before mealtime. For this reason, many people with eczema will carry a moisturizing product with them when washing up outside of the home.
Using a dermatologist-tested and approved oatmeal-based body lotion helps quite a bit. Oatmeal is known for its ability to soothe itchy skin. Along with other hydrating ingredients such as honey, cocoa butter, and aloe vera juice, a body lotion will become an essential part of your daily eczema skincare routine.
When you need fast relief, you’ll also want to consider trying a cream, selecting one that’s made with natural ingredients to soothe painful, itchy skin.
Have a Healthier and Happier Winter Thanks to Regularly Hydrating Your Skin
Winter is that time of year when so many of us get a chance to spend time with family and friends to share the holidays and enjoy a break.
You will get more out of winter activities when you are feeling comfortable while experiencing fewer painful eczema flare-ups, thanks to regular hydration. Soon, you will discover how moisturizing your skin is a vital tool in managing eczema.
Perhaps you know someone who has recently been diagnosed with eczema and needs help protecting their skin. If so, you can be helpful by giving the gift of a Hydration Skincare Set directly from Eczema Honey.
This would also make a nice gift for yourself if you are prone to eczema flare-ups and need help soothing the discomfort that comes from itchy, inflamed skin.
- American Academy of Dermatology Association: Why are baths and moisturizer so important when treating eczema?