Slugging 101: How to Slug for Eczema or Sensitive Skin

Slugging 101: How to Slug for Eczema or Sensitive Skin

When you experience an eczema flare up, it’s a painful condition that may drive you to distraction, trying to scratch an itch. And growing upset about having eczema can lead to the situation getting even worse, since anxiety and charged emotions are known factors for increased outbreaks.

A fairly recent trend in the eczema community is a technique called slugging. It’s an approach to dealing with eczema that you might find useful.

About Eczema

If you or a loved one happen to suffer from eczema, it is good to learn more about how to manage this painful condition. Many individuals from all walks of life have eczema. About 31.6 million (or 10.1% of the population) people in the United States today have eczema, according to the latest figures obtained from the National Eczema Association.

Eczema is characterized by an itchy sensation as the chief complaint. Other prevalent symptoms are dry and reddened skin. When left uncontrolled, it can really affect your quality of life. Anyone who has found it challenging to fall asleep during an eczema outbreak can attest to that fact the discomfort can get in the way of your badly needed restorative rest.

About 10% of people will experience an eczema outbreak at some point in their life. For most, the peak years are in childhood.

Eczema occurs more frequently in adult women than men, while the numbers are roughly equal in childhood cases.

One unfortunate aspect of eczema is that in addition to making people’s skin feel uncomfortable or painful, it an also lead to social problems. Some are embarrassed about the way their inflamed skin looks, especially if they have been scratching it.

Because of this, about one-third to one-half of adults with eczema find themselves avoiding interacting socially with others, per the NEA. It can be hard on parents and caregivers too, when their loved one has eczema and they feel frustrated in trying to help.

One of the approaches to eczema that is starting to gain some traction now among sufferers is known as “slugging.”

Introduction to Slugging for Treating Eczema

If you’re interested in slugging relief to address your nagging symptoms of eczema, welcome to the club. Slugging is a new method for taking care of the skin. It involves applying to your skin some Vaseline or a similar petroleum product. Slugging locks in moisture and keeps it from evaporating from your skin. Proper moisture is required so your skin barrier can repair itself.

According to a report from Mind Body Green, the idea of “slugging” as a skin care regimen appeared on the Reddit discussion forum’s “Skincare Addiction” thread sometime in 2018.


What Happens During Slugging?

Known as an “occlusive,” brand name Vaseline (or any generic petroleum jelly) is the main ingredient in slugging. Occlusives actually seal moisture in your skin, which is an essential element in the fight against eczema. You can also use other occlusives, such as night cream that’s the consistency of butter, or some silky oil, per MBG.

First, you make sure to thoroughly clean your skin, which you can do as part of your nightly ritual before bed time. You don’t want to leave any sunscreen or makeup (or dirt from an active day) on your skin before you start slugging, since doing so will trap these contaminants.

Next, you’ll apply a generous portion of humectants, which is a fancy word for a substance that helps you stay hydrated. Aloe, glycerin and hyaluronic acid (and products that contain these ingredients) are what you’ll be looking for.

After you’ve spread the humectants on your skin, it’s time to moisturize. When you have finished massaging moisturizer into your skin, you’ll be ready to add the occlusive, which in this case is Vaseline or our Original or Nut Free Skin Soothing Creams.

Apply a generous amount of the slugging occlusive to your skin, rolling it in with your hands. When you’ve finished, rest for a few minutes so it can settle into your skin, before you get into bed. This will help keep you from getting gunk all over your pillows.

Additional Help Beyond Using the Slugging Technique When You Have Eczema

Preserving your skin barrier is essential for keeping eczema at bay. Slugging periodically can make a difference for the better in your skin care regime.

Hopefully you will find slugging relief is beneficial for avoiding painful eczema flare ups.

Whether you have eczema yourself or are looking for solutions for a friend or relative who has this condition, you’ll be glad to know that we carry a number of soothing, non-toxic options here at Eczema Honey Co.

Browse our online store, where you can find a variety of soaps, creams and lotions. Because our products are designed for those with sensitive skin, you’ll find that their ingredients are gentle and natural, just as you’d expect.



  • National Eczema Association: Eczema Stats
  • Mind Body Green: What Is Slugging & Should You Try It? Let's Explain The Slimy Skin Care Technique
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