Eczema is one of the most common skin conditions I come across, both mild and extreme cases. Most people who have been suffering with it for most of their life believe they will never get rid of it. This is not true. It can be a challenge to commit to making changes, but with a little dedication you can have the smooth and non-itchy skin!
What causes eczema?
Eczema triggers are different for everyone, but there is a general pattern. Remedies that work for one person, may not work for another. It’s always worth a try! Here are the three most common triggers of eczema (I believe a combination of them applies to most eczema sufferers);
Stress & Anxiety
Diet & Food Triggers - namely foods known to heat or cause inflammation in the skin/body.
Topical & Environmental Triggers - products that touch your skin, not just skin case. What do you use to do your dishes, wash your hands, wash your hair, or your laundry? The list goes on.
How do you treat eczema?
Let’s look at a few of those eczema triggers and talk a little bit about each of them. Ultimately, I recommend coming in for a skin consultation so your therapist can look at your lifestyle and situation to give the most specific and accurate advice. This article is meant only as a guideline to get you thinking about any changes you might start to make.
Dealing with stress should be a top priority, even more than just focusing on eczema. I know it’s not always a walk in the park – life tends to throw curveballs our way. Especially lately! But guess what? You have the power to control your reactions and how you handle those tough situations. That’s where self-care and maintaining a healthy “work/life balance” come into play – they’re absolute game-changers. So, let’s dive into our short list of helpful techniques you can explore to tackle stress head-on!
When it comes to dealing with stress, deep breathing can work wonders. Take a moment to focus on your breath, inhale deeply through your nose, and exhale slowly through your mouth. This simple yet powerful technique helps activate your body’s relaxation response, calming your mind and reducing stress levels. You can practice deep breathing exercises anywhere, anytime, making it a convenient tool to combat stress in the midst of a busy day.
Meditation is an excellent practice to find inner peace and cultivate mindfulness. By setting aside a few minutes each day to meditate, you can create a sense of calm amidst life’s chaos. Find a quiet spot, sit comfortably, and clear your mind of distractions. Let your thoughts come and go without judgment. Regular meditation not only reduces stress but also enhances your ability to manage challenges with a more composed and centered approach. We love the Insight Timer App!
For those moments of acute stress, Rescue Remedy Spray can be a true savior. This quick and convenient stress-relief remedy contains natural ingredients known for their calming properties. Just a few spritzes can help ease tension and anxiety, providing a sense of comfort during particularly stressful situations. Keep one in your bag or desk drawer for easy access whenever stress strikes.
Exercise doesn’t have to be intense to help you combat stress; even gentle activities like walking, yoga, or tai chi can make a significant difference. Engaging in physical activity releases endorphins, the body’s natural mood boosters, which can alleviate stress and improve your overall well-being. Incorporate a bit of gentle exercise into your daily routine, and you’ll notice a positive shift in your mood and stress levels.
Time out for yourself
Amidst life’s hustle and bustle, don’t forget to carve out some time for yourself. Whether it’s reading a book, taking a warm bath, enjoying a Spa Facial or Massage pursuing a hobby, or simply sitting quietly with a cup of tea, allowing yourself moments of relaxation and self-reflection is essential for managing stress. Perhaps you’d like to start a gratitude journal? Prioritize self-care and treat yourself with the same kindness and attention you offer to others – you deserve it! Taking regular timeouts for yourself will rejuvenate your mind and spirit, leaving you better equipped to handle whatever comes your way.
The Eczema Diet
This is like the big boss of all eczema triggers, and changing it can be seriously tough for some. But here’s the thing - it’s also the superhero when it comes to making a real difference. Some say there is no correlation between diet and eczema - but we’ve seen time and time again how changing your diet (for the better) can totally transform your skin game! So, although it might be a challenge, trust me, tweaking your diet can work wonders for tackling eczema!
Remember, results don’t happen overnight! When you tweak your diet, give it some time – around 6 to 8 weeks – for those changes to reflect on your skin. Stay committed to it every day, even if it feels like nothing’s happening. Consistency is key here. Trust the process, and sooner than you think, you’ll see those positive changes shining through on your skin! Keep at it, and you’ll get there!
Add EFA’s (Essential Fatty Acids) into your diet ASAP!
Bestow Beauty Plus Oil is your answer here. Essential Fatty Acids. Your moisturiser from the inside out. This gives your body GOOD QUALITY oils that can protect, heal and provide anti-inflammatory properties within in the skin. This one is so important! This is the first supplement we would ask you to take. Essential Fatty Acids (EFAs) are one of the most important nutrients not only for general health, but also for skin health.
Understand fish oil is so beneficial for general health, but does not contain any of the EFA’s required for skin health.
Essential Fatty Acids (EFA) deficiency is one of the most common causes of skin problems. Because EFA’s are responsible for oil regulation, a deficiency can present as either oily or dry skin and will contribute to premature ageing. Bestow Beauty Oil’s are rich in Essential Fatty Acids (EFA’s) which bestow health and radiance from deep within the skin’s layers. It will change the quality (not quantity) of oil in your skin to create a smooth and anti-inflammatory oil. It helps the skin to hold hydration, keep the skin supple and cool. One tablespoon daily is all you need.
Check for other nutrient deficiencies in your 6 main essential nutrients for skin.
Water, Essential Fatty Acids (Omegas), Vitamin B, Zinc, Vitamin A, Vitamin C. Many of them need another to work at their optimum level. Generally, you are only as strong as your weakest link. (i.e. there’s not much use for all those good EFA’s if you don’t have enough Vit B to even use them!)
Some food and drinks have a heating effect on the skin. These foods make skin conditions (such as eczema and rosacea) worse by increasing any redness and inflammation present. It causes the skin to appear reddened and sensitised. These foods are called ‘vasodilators’ and they heat your skin by increasing the blood flow through your fine capillary system.
Avoid foods known to heat and/or irritate the skin (curries, chillies, oranges, strawberries, alcohol, an excess of red meat etc.) and look for cooling alternatives.
Start your day with half a lemon squeezed into warm (or room temp) water (Why?). Make sure you are drinking enough water throughout the day. Add lemon, cucumber, and/or mint to your water, or try herbal teas.
Try a course of Janesce Aperitif
If you are on a skin care programme, a course of Janesce Aperitif (herbal tonic) to help cleanse your blood, liver and gut. This is great at taking heat and itch out of the skin - but is best prescribed by your therapist.
How is your gut health? Are you eliminating correctly?
Our gut is home to a complex eco-system of bacteria and fungus. Poor diet and ill health can deplete our colonies of beneficial microbes leading to a disordered gut. Bestow Gut Love + is specially formulated to address skin challenges at the root by restoring gut health.
A new wave of scientific gut research is highlighting the direct connection between gut health and skin health. You cannot truly heal inflammatory skin conditions like acne, rosacea and eczema or revitalize dull, lack-lustre skin without first rebalancing the gut.
Furthermore, when the digestive system struggles with constipation, toxins and waste products can build up, potentially leading to inflammation throughout the body, including the skin. Additionally, an imbalanced gut microbiome may play a role in triggering immune responses that contribute to eczema flare-ups.
Bestow Gut Love + is a world-class synbiotic powder, including probiotics, prebiotics and digestive enzymes to restore the gut and renew skin from within. Rich in fibre, it promotes regular elimination of toxins, creating the inner environment for clear, glowing skin.
What is coming into contact with your skin, that might be stripping or irritating it further? Cleaning products, fabrics, perfumed products, soaps and foaming cleansers, chlorinated water.
Avoid Harsh Products & Chemicals
Keep the steroid creams for emergencies not for your go-to! If the skin is bleeding and cracked, or really struggling to heal - you could use a small amount for a few days until the skin is intact again - then follow your Janesce Routine (below). Overuse of steroid creams can thin the skin and make the skin reliant on them.
Eczema on hands and body? Wear gloves when cleaning, possibly even wear gloves when shampooing your hair. When you wash your hair, rinse to the side to avoid letting the shampoo run down your body and skin. Shampoos are very stripping, as their job is to cut through oil in your hair.
Foaming cleansers and soaps will strip the natural oils from the skin. Avoid, avoid, avoid! Use cream or oil cleansers only. Foaming cleansers, soaps and anti-septic washes generally have a pH of around 8-10. This is too alkaline for the skin! These strip the skin of it’s natural oils, and cause more harm then good. Keep that skin barrier and acid mantle in tact as much as you can and choose a cream, lotion or oil cleanser.
What body wash do you use when you have eczema? Try Janesce Liquid Body Cleanse. Body sweat is water soluble, so it washes off when we are standing under the shower. We don’t really need to lather up our entire bodies with soap! For most people, using soap only on your “smelly areas”, such as armpits, groin and feet - is enough. You’ll need a proper cleanse here to break down bacteria secreted by different glands to the rest of your body which is water soluable sweat.
Avoid letting water dry on your skin without using a moisturiser or oil. Wet the skin and lock it in! Add Skin Soaking to your regime asap. After soaking and/or showering, apply a body oil or moisturiser to lock in the moisture and hydration. For my own eczema prone skin, I do this day and night, and as often in between as I need to. Of course I am washing my hands constantly in between clients so I need to be extra diligent with this. Even the most gentle soaps are still soaps! I love the EC Lotion B because it contains no emulsifiers, and supports the skin to do what it’s naturally supposed to do.
Eczema Skin Routine For Face
IN THE MORNING:Soak your skin with warm water and a cloth, use a few drops of SK1 concentrate and press into damp skin, mix one pump of Soothing Mist and one pump of Avocado & Sesame Oil into the palm of your hands, mix together and apply to the face and décolleté. This mimics your natural skin barrier, will lock in hydration and protect your skin from the elements.
Repeat the full routine during the day, or use just the Soothing Mist on it’s own when you feel hot, itchy and/or dry.
IN THE EVENING: First cleanse your skin with Avocado & Sesame Oil and remove with a warm damp cloth, then follow with your same morning routine. Alternatively, you can try the cream cleanser Rose Petal Cleanser.
All products mentioned in the morning routine are available in our Janesce Repair & Glow Pack. This pack lasts around 2 months and is a great way to trial the products.
IN THE SHOWER: Use gloves to shampoo your hair, then rinse any shampoo and conditioners to the side to avoid soap touching your body. Use Liquid Body Cleanse as your body wash, but only where it’s really needed!
EC Lotion B does contain honey, so for any sensitivities we can special order an EC Lotion A without honey. EC Lotion B doesn’t have any emulsifiers so sometimes if the bottle gets cold the shea butter may separate from the more liquid ingredients - know the product is not off! Sit the bottle in very warm water and then after a while shake together to blend back together. Sometimes it will stay a little separated, but the product itself is still fine. You can warm it in your hands and blend together first before applying. EC Lotion B can also be applied to the face if needed.
The 3 body products mentioned in this routine (Liquid Body Cleanse, Soothing Mist & EC Lotion B) are conveniently available to purchase in our Body Eczema Support pack.
It does take commitment, but you can keep your eczema at bay, if not get rid of it entirely. Please ask your therapist, and don’t feel like you are stuck with eczema forever. If you are ready to make the changes needed, I am here to support you.