The best skincare routine for eczema that you and your skin will love

The best skincare routine for eczema that you and your skin will love

The best skincare routine for eczema that you and your skin will love

Do you always seem to get a red, conspicuous flare up right before a big occasion, meaning your plans to wear that stunning new dress are firmly out the window? Or perhaps you’re on your last tether, dealing with constant itchiness that only gets worse when you scratch it? We’re talking about eczema, of course. The itchy, annoying, and sometimes painful skin condition that many of us know and love - can you tell we’re being sarcastic? Luckily, we’re here to help. Let's create a skincare routine for eczema and you and your skin will love!

What is eczema?

For those of you who are blessed and do not know what eczema is, we’ll explain it briefly. Eczema, or atopic dermatitis, is a super common inflammatory skin condition that causes the skin to become dry, inflamed and very itchy. It occurs in patches on the face and body, often showing up in cycles that we lovingly (not) refer to as ‘flare ups’. A flare-up could last for a week or two, or a couple of months. Luckily, there is some reprieve, as the skin will return to normal between these flare-ups.

Unfortunately, eczema is a chronic condition, and there’s no cure for it yet. But if you think you have it, don’t be disheartened. There are plenty of ways in which you can manage the condition, reducing flare-ups, and minimising damage to your skin. And, we’re here to help! We’re no strangers to the ups and downs of sensitive skin, so we’ve put together a couple of our top tips that you can use to create your own skincare routine for eczema.

Creating your own skincare routine for eczema

The ultimate goal when it comes to managing an inflammatory skin condition is to maintain moisture. You might have noticed that you experience more flare-ups during the colder months, or when you’re dehydrated. That’s because the skin needs a certain level of moisture to stay healthy and happy. It’s even more important if you have eczema. When the skin is dried out, it can crack and break, triggering a flare-up.

The art of the double-cleanse

If you’re suffering from dry, itchy, and sore skin, you might be wondering “what should I wash my face with if I have eczema?”. You need to remove makeup, SPF, and cleanse the face, but you don’t want to irritate your skin further. It’s a tricky pickle.

The first step in your skincare routine for eczema is to find the right cleansers. Some cleansers can be far too harsh for our sensitive skin, stripping away essential oils as well as makeup. You’ll need to find a cleanser that will remove the nasties (makeup, dead skin cells, excess sebum, and bacteria), without drying out the skin. For this, we recommend using the double-cleanse method.

Firstly, you’ll want to use an oil-based cleanser to remove makeup. This will melt away makeup, making it easy to remove without the need for scrubbing. Oil-based eye makeup removers are brilliant, if you’re a fan of heavy eye makeup, as you won’t need to scrub at the delicate skin around your eyes. The goal here is to be as gentle as possible, so no scrubbing!

The second part of your cleansing skin care routine for eczema is a pH balancing cleanser. We love jelly or milky cleansers for this, as they’re hydrating and gentle on the skin. It will help to make sure your skin is truly clean, and it will double-up to help restore your skin’s natural pH level. Avoid anything with alcohol or soap at all costs, as they will strip away your skin’s natural oils, leaving your face feeling tight, dry, and prone to a flare-up.

Top tip: turn down the temperature!

Rinse away cleansers with lukewarm water, and try to avoid washing your face in the shower. We all love whacking the shower up to temperatures that are akin to Hell itself, but we promise your skin doesn’t like it as much as you do. Extremely hot water melts and washes away those lovely oils that keep your skin hydrated.

cleanse your skin for eczema

Can I use hyaluronic acid if I have eczema?

We’re so glad you asked! Of course, you can. In fact, we recommend adding it to your skincare routine for eczema. Hyaluronic acid is a humectant, meaning it sucks moisture into the skin and holds it there. It is a small step in your skincare routine that has a major payoff. Hyaluronic acid helps bring moisture to deeper levels of the skin, as well as keeping it hydrated for longer.

Looking after the moisture barrier is priority number one when it comes to caring for eczema-prone skin, so anything that will bring hydration to the table gets a major thumbs up from us. Hyaluronic acid, in particular, tends to be about 5 - 8 on the pH scale, meaning that it’s as neutral as water. This means that it’s highly unlikely that it will irritate your skin or cause a flare-up. It can help to reduce flare-ups by keeping the skin hydrated.

After you have cleansed and applied a hydrating toner, you can add a small amount of hyaluronic acid to the skin. We love applying it to damp skin to really lock in moisture. When you’re creating your skincare routine for eczema, we suggest applying your products in order of consistency - from thinnest to thickest. Doing this makes sure they absorb into the skin, rather than just sitting on top of it.

Reach for the heavy-duty moisturiser, you'll thank us

The next step in your skincare routine for eczema is moisture. We’ve already spoken about the importance of maintaining a good level of moisture, so it’s no surprise that we recommend opting for a heavy-duty moisturiser. We couldn’t recommend our Light Hydrating Moisturiser enough for the job. It’s specifically formulated to bring intense hydration whilst caring for even the most sensitive skin.

We have included skin-loving ingredients like aloe vera juice and apricot kernel oil to gently, but effectively, hydrate the skin. All the while ingredients like oat silk calm the skin, reducing redness and inflammation. Of course, all of our products also contain premium quality CBD oil, which is known for soothing irritated skin and reducing discomfort. It’s exactly what your skincare routine for eczema needs to help reduce the constant mid-flare up itching!

SPF, all day, every day

No skincare routine is complete without a high-quality SPF, and it’s not any different if you have eczema. Flare-ups can be triggered by a wide range of factors, and exposure to sunlight can be one of them. We’re sorry to be the bearers of bad news for tanning enthusiasts, but if you’re suffering from flare-ups during the summer months, you might want to consider swapping to a tan that comes in bottle form!

In addition, you should always finish your skincare routine for eczema with a light but powerful SPF. We recommend opting for a sunblock, like zinc oxide, as it’s extremely effective. It’s also far more gentle on the skin in comparison to other sunscreen options. You could even double-up on protection by adding our Regenerating Collagen Moisturiser to your routine, as it also contains zinc oxide!

No scrubs

It might be tempting to grab the exfoliating gloves and attempt to scrub away flaky, dry skin, but resist the urge. In fact, step away from the physical exfoliators completely! You and your skin will thank us.

Scrubbing at the skin with harsh cloths or physically exfoliating facial scrubs can actually do far more harm than good. Rubbing and pulling at the skin can cause microscopic tears, leaving the skin open to infection and inflammation. This kind of irritation is guaranteed to cause itching or a full-blown flare-up. Equally, scrubbing the skin can prevent healing from current flare-ups, making them last much longer.

Essentially, you need to be as gentle as possible with your skin, avoiding irritation at all costs. You can add chemical exfoliants like AHAs and BHAs into your skincare routine for eczema to help prevent the build-up of dry and dead skin cells.

However, proceed with caution. Over exfoliating, even with chemical exfoliants, can dry out the skin. So, maybe make it a weekly occurrence, rather than a daily one. If you’re mid-flare up and your skin is already showing signs of irritation, we suggest skipping the exfoliating step until the skin has fully healed.

Patch-testing is a game-changer

For us, we’re not sure which is more frustrating: the itchiness or trying to figure out what caused it. We’re sure you can relate! There are so many potential triggers for eczema flare-ups, and that’s why we recommend patch-testing new products. You never know what products might irritate your skin, so you should always test a small amount to begin with, just in case.

Pop a small amount of the product on your forearm and leave it there overnight, if it’s a moisturiser or facial oil. If it’s a cleanser, leave it on the skin for about 2 minutes before rinsing away. Keep an eye on the area for 24 hours, to make sure there are no adverse reactions.

We know this process can be time-consuming, and you’re dying to try out your new products, but you’re better safe than sorry. If you’re doing a complete overhaul of your skincare routine for eczema, we recommend testing products one by one.

By adding them to your routine over the course of a couple of weeks, it's easy to identify which one is causing irritating if it doesn’t agree with your skin. There’s nothing worse than starting a completely new routine and not knowing which one is causing a reaction - we speak from experience on this one.

Easy like Sunday morning

Another major trigger for eczema is stress and anxiety. But, does skincare help with eczema if it’s stress-induced? Absolutely! All of the above-mentioned tips will help to calm the skin, reducing irritation and letting it heal. But, you can also use skin care to reduce stress, helping reduce flare-ups in the first place.

Each day, take your skincare routine for eczema as an opportunity for some self-care time. We all need a couple of minutes to decompress and centre ourselves after a busy day. For instance, whether you’re cleansing or toning, you can use that time to practice daily affirmations or think of things you’re grateful for.

Equally, you can treat yourself to a loving facial massage at the end of the day. Using a jade roller or our personal favourite, a gua sha, can help to release tension and improve circulation. We love using our Luxury Facial Oil with a jade gua sha to gently massage the face, whilst soothing and hydrating the skin.

Ready to create your own skincare routine for eczema?

Managing and caring for sensitive skin can be a lot of work, but once you have nailed your skincare routine, it will make your life a lot easier. Trust us! Each of our tips has been tried and tested by those of us here at Poko, who also suffer from super sensitive skin. We understand the trials and tribulations all too well, but the main piece of advice we would give is: hydration is key.

When it comes to skincare for eczema, try to incorporate as many hydrating and nourishing products as possible. Ideally, you should opt for natural products, as chemicals and heavily-scented products also tend to trigger flare-ups.

You can prevent flare-ups by including a gentle, pH neutral cleanser, toners and serums in your eczema skincare routine. And you should also opt for heavy-duty moisturisers and powerful SPFs to finish things off. And remember, no scrubbing!

For more of our top tips, follow us on Tik Tok or Instagram. See you there!

You may also like to read: Eczema - Symptoms, Causes & Treatments

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