What is eczema?
From the Greek word which means “to boil ”, eczema is a term generally used for a type of skin inflammation. It can manifest itself in a number of ways and its symptoms can vary from person to person. There are several types of skin diseases that are called eczemas also known medically as ( Dermatitis ) but anyone who suffers from dry, sensitive, and itchy skin is said to have eczema.
Eczema is a debilitating skin condition that affects over 30 million Americans alone not to mention the rest of the world. Eczema can be an uncomfortable and sometimes debilitating condition that can affect your quality of life in both your physical state but also affect your mental wellbeing.
It can affect every aspect of our lives from work, relationships, sleep, depression and generally leading a normal life. Some people will only suffer very mildly and can live a practically normal life, but unfortunately for some people, it will take over their whole lives and completely dominate their world.
We found the best essential oils for eczema are:
- Lavender -Calming effect
- Manuka- Honey Fights Bacteria
- Chamomile- Reduces irritation
- Tea Tree- Anti-fungal properties
- Citrus Oils-Soothes the skin
- Turmeric – Anti-inflammatory oil
More and more people are turning away from conventional medicine and looking at alternative treatments like essential oils as they search for a more holistic remedy for their skin condition. The anti-inflammatory and stress-reducing properties of essential oils can help to promote healing and general wellbeing.
In this blog Best essential oils for eczema and Dry skin, you’ll learn more about eczema treatments and how essential oils can help as well as the best essential oils for eczema.
What Causes Eczema?
No one knows exactly what causes eczema, and different people can have different triggers that will exasperate their condition.
Eczema (Dermatitis) is a dry skin condition. It is a very individual condition which can vary from person to person and comes in many different forms. It is not contagious so you cannot catch it from someone else, the physical appearance can be off-putting to some people and this is why people often think it’s contagious. Rest assured it isn’t.
In mild cases of eczema, the skin is dry, scaly, red and itchy. In more severe cases there may be weeping, crusting and bleeding this can often lead to flare-ups and infection requiring hospital treatment or steroid creams which should be used as a last resort. Constant scratching causes the skin to split and bleed and also leaves it open to infection, this is the number one danger for eczema sufferers. One infection or flare-up can take weeks to heal and will be very painful and leave you in discomfort.
Types of trigger points
- Chemical irritants Shampoos, disinfectants, and household cleaners, soap
- Micro-organisms: Viruses, bacteria, and fungi
- Temperature: Going from hot weather, sweating during physical activity, and high and low humidity
- Food allergies: Dairy, eggs, soy, wheat, nuts, seeds, alcohol and junk food
- Clothing: Wool or synthetic fibres
- Allergens: Pets and Animals, pollen
- Stress & Lack of sleep: Eczema sleep deprivation, stress are trigger points
A trigger point is something that affects your condition in a negative way.
Eczema affects people of all ages but is primarily seen in children. Those who “grow out” of their eczema during early childhood may see it recur again in later life. It is rare to start suffering from eczema later in life if you never suffered from it as a child. However, some cases have been reported and are normally due to environmental triggers like Chemicals, Food allergies or Stress.
How can essential oils help my eczema?
There are plenty of remedies available to those who suffer from eczema from topical steroids, UV Light therapy, New treatments like Dupixent, and over-the-counter creams. But in a recent survey, the results showed that more than 40% of those polled were dissatisfied with the current state of medical treatments for eczema, reporting that medications are ineffective, expensive, or cause adverse side effects.
This is one of the reasons why more people are turning to alternative eczema treatments.
Chemicals and untested ingredients are one of the biggest risk factors in the treatment of eczema and using some over the counter or steroid focused creams long-term can have terrible side effects. Just ask my son, we in our naivety used a strong steroid cream for years only to find later in his Teenage years we are experiencing other medical issues caused by these products.
At the time they seemed the only solution to fight a tough flare-up but Hindsight is a great thing.
Hey? We do think that steroid creams do have a part to play in the treatment of eczema but this is a highly controversial area and we’ll leave this discussion for another day.
We are still learning more about the healing properties of plants and herbs. Scientist and Doctors have studied Botanical oils and applied topically have shown much potential when it comes to reducing skin inflammation while increasing the skin’s moisture barrier.
The key to treating eczema is maintaining a high moisture level within your skin. Holistically, essential oils can be used to treat some of the underlying issues that exist in treating eczema like anxiety and stress.
When you think of essential oils you think of lovely smells and relaxing baths RIGHT? Well, that’s all part of essential oil treatments. When using essential oils to treat skin conditions like eczema you take time to apply them, normally in a relaxed environment. This will help the healing process and reduce stress, a huge factor when treating eczema. This factor in essential oils should not be overlooked or taken lightly.
Why are they called essential oils?
The origin of the term “essential oil” dates back to the middle ages, as Alchemists rabidly searched for what was thought to be a “5th element”; the other four being fire, water, earth and air.
Distillation allowed for these discoveries as many plants which were distilled produced a liquid which sat on top of the water. Anything that was lighter than and did not mix with water was classed as oil. When this so-called
the fifth element was discovered, it was called a “quintessence” and considered essential to all living things. Hence the term “Essential Oil”
What are carrier oils?
Essential oils are highly concentrated plant extracts, like most things that are highly concentrated they must be diluted in a carrier oil in order to be safely applied to the skin. Named because they “carry” the oil to the skin, carrier oils are made from the seeds, nuts, kernels, and other fatty portions of the plant.
Like essentials, carriers have their own unique therapeutic qualities. Pure concentrated essential oils if applied undiluted to the skin can cause severe irritation, sensitization, redness or burning or other reactions in some individuals. Carrier oils are used to dilute essential and other oils prior to topical application.
Which essential oils are best for eczema and dry skin?
Our Top 10 Essential oils to use with the Best essential oils for eczema and Dry skin
- Eucalyptus: Eucalyptus essential oil has compounds that help to treat dry skin and improve the appearance of damaged skin that is associated with eczema. The health benefits of eucalyptus oil are well-known and wide-ranging, and its properties include being an anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, decongestant, deodorant, antiseptic, antibacterial, and stimulating, in addition to other medicinal qualities. Eucalyptus essential oil is colorless and has a distinctive taste and odor.
- Lavender: Essential lavender oil can help to deal with eczema in a number of ways. For example, it has powerful antibacterial and antifungal properties to reduce skin infections. Lavender is also a natural stress reliever and stress is a known eczema trigger. Lavender is known to help reduce pain and has been used for centuries as pain relief.
- Tea Tree oil: Produced from a shrub-like tree known as Melaleuca in Australia tea tree oil is one of the most researched essential oils in the world. Tea tree oil contains strong antibacterial and antifungal compounds that are known to reduce inflammation that can lead to swelling of the skin.
- Thyme: Thyme has an aroma that calms the senses, returning you to an emotional state of balance. Thyme supports the immune, respiratory, digestive, nervous and other body systems. It’s one of the best essential oils for hormones because it balances hormone levels
- Rose geranium: Rose geranium is another anti-inflammatory essential oil for relieving skin itchiness. One study showed that rose geranium can help to soothe contact dermatitis and prevent infections. This is one of our favorite oils as it really helps with itching.
- Lemon: Lemon essential oil to treat a wide spectrum of health conditions for at least 1,000 years. The health benefits of lemon essential oil have been well established scientifically. It’s also known to Nourish the skin and Promotes Weight loss.
- Frankincense: Frankincense oil for eczema is great for treating chronic skin patches of eczema because it contains properties that reduce inflammation and help treat infected skin sores. The smell is one you’ll need to get used to. We found its a love it or hate it aroma.
- Turmeric: Turmeric essential oil contains a number of properties that make it an effective for skin care. Turmeric oil is also anti-allergic, antibacterial, antimicrobial, antifungal. We found it had a spicy and woody aroma to it which we found very relaxing.
- Bergamot: Bergamot oil is not as popular as some of the other essential oils but it’s used to kill bacteria, heal scars and minimize marks on the skin. It has also been known to help reduce pain and is great at reducing inflamed skin. Bergamot is a plant that produces a type of citrus fruit and its scientific name is Citrus Bergamia. We found bergamot oil relaxed me and made me feel relaxed.
- Coconut oil: There are many opinions about this oil, I currently use it on my feet and I love it. Some people say not to use it on young children so please apply it to a test area before using coconut oil all over your body. Coconut oil is loaded with good fats that provide us with energy, able to fight microbes. Plus I love the smell it’s amazing! Read our blog on coconut oil.
Best carriers for essential oils
Most essential oils are pure raw oils that are concentrated. Carrier oils are used to mix with the essential oils so they’re safe to apply directly to the skin. Never apply an essential oil directly to your skin as this can and will cause burns. Carrier oils are vegetable oils. The best carrier oil is cold-pressed and made from plants. Cold-pressed oils hold onto more of their beneficial properties since they are not subjected to heat. It’s also best to choose unrefined oils that have no additives.
Different carrier oils carry their own amazing therapeutic properties based on the essential fatty acids and natural nutrients they contain, that might often get overlooked. Make sure you purchase a quality carrier oil, the best one you can afford otherwise the healing qualities from the essential oil will be lost in the poor delivery to your skin.
Here is a list of the best carrier oils to use with your essential oil
- Shea butter: One of the most commonly used carriers. We found the African shea butter really good. This is one of the best carrier oils to use with the Best essential oils for eczema and dry skin
- Avocado oil: Is rich in fatty acids helps nourish the skin showing signs of eczema. and redness and can help to reduce the appearance of scaly skin patches in eczema. Avocado oil is the perfect carrier for essential oils. Avocado Oil helps to keep skin supple, while thoroughly moisturizing and softening stubborn, dry or rough skin. When used as a massage oil, it’s soft, soothing and leaves no greasy residue.
- Jojoba Oil: We loved the smell and texture of this oil. The reason that jojoba oil is so effective for managing eczema flare-ups is that it is anti-inflammatory in nature. The journal Pharmacological Research reported that skin inflammation can be reduced dramatically be using Jojoba regularly. We also liked the smell.
- Castor oil: Castor oil is a soothing oil that has been used medicinally for thousands of years and has antiviral, antibacterial, and anti-fungal properties. Used throughout the cosmetics and skincare world in many leading skincare products. Castor oil is a strong thick oil that works well into the skin.
- Emu oil: This essential oil is easily and deeply absorbed by the skin. It penetrates deep to replenish our skin’s natural oils. Packed with a Natural source of Omega 3 we loved this oil. However, Emu oil is not the cheapest and if you’re using it all over your body three times a day it would become very expensive. Might be worth a go if you only suffer from eczema on a small area of your body. Make sure you buy 100% pure Emu oil.
- Tamanu oil: Known as a healing oil it is suitable for all skin types especially good for acne prone and damaged skin. It has anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antimicrobial, and antibiotic properties. Tamanu oil works well as a carrier oil with essential oils but has a strong aroma. Mix with your favorite essential oil and you could be onto a winner. It soaked into our skin really well and felt like a luxury product. Pleasantly surprised by this one.
- Sweet Almond oil: Rubs easily into the skin, it’s a thick oil and has a lovely aroma. Add your favorite essential oil and put a few drops in your bath and relax and heal at the same time. Sweet almond oil is easy to apply, had a lovely aroma and felt silky smooth.
How to mix essential oils with carrier oils
- 1 tablespoon carrier oil of your choice and add 2-3 drops of your favorite essential oil.
- Mix well and allow to sit for 1 minute to ensure its completely blended.
- Apply you mixed oil to your affected area to help reduce skin inflammation, and soothe the itchiness and dry skin.
- Apply 2-3 times a day until signs of your eczema have reduced or improved.
- Use as part of your daily moisturizing routine.
Where to buy essential oils and carrier oil
We have added some affiliate links to the information above. Anything that is highlighted in green is an easy to follow link to the item on AMAZON. It won’t cost you a penny more and makes it easy for you to buy the oil at the right price. If you click the link we make a small affiliate commission which helps us run this ECZEMA SUPPORT GROUP which covers our running cost. We thank you in advance for using the links.
If you’re unsure which essential oil you’ll like we have found a complete set that will help you experiment. The carrier oils are inexpensive so you can try 2-3 without much cost but the essential oils to buy individually would be costly. So try the starter kit and when you find the perfect essential oil you can then buy it in one larger bottle. The link is below for this kit. This is a great way to buy the best essential oils for eczema and dry skin.
Helpful tips on using and mixing essential oils for eczema
- Do a test patch: Before applying any new treatment apply it to a small area to check for signs of an irritant.
- Don’t use too much: Get the concentrate right. Don’t be tempted to mix it too strong.
- Experiment: Try not only different essential oils but also try different carrier oils
- Apply to baths: Use essential oils not only as a lotion but add to baths and face cleansing
- Apply regularly: Don’t apply once and hope for the best. It may take several applications to see a result.
Easy Dilution: 1 drop essential oil to 1 teaspoon carrier oil
Credits for the Chart: www.mommypotamus.com
Buy the best: Use the best Organic or Natural products you can afford and look for 100% pure ingredients backed by a certification of authenticity on the product. Buy essential oils and use as part of your daily routine, don’t apply once or twice and stop using them because you don’t see an instant improvement. Give it time! From past experience, it took 10-12 applications before I noticed a tangible improvement, from then on I saw a steady improvement in my skin.
Cooling spray: Another good tip, especially in hot weather, is to mix your favorite essential oil and add to a spray bottle and spray this relaxing and cooling mixture on your face and neck in hot weather. Don’t forget to apply sunscreen to stop burning. We have a great article for you to read on this topic “What’s the best sunblock for eczema”
Calming Compress: When your eczema is flaring up in one part of your body you can make a cool compress using essential oils. Mix your favorite oil and apply to a cool wet compress and dab onto the affected area. This will help reduce the itching instantly.
DIY: Try making your own eczema products using essential oils. You could make shampoo, face cream, hand balm, body wash. Just go to youtube and search for DIY ESSENTIAL OILS to find a ton of helpful videos. It can be fun and healthy to make your own products. The best thing is that you’re 100% confident all your ingredients are safe and natural.
Feeling Tired?: Feeling tired and low energy? Put one drop of lemon and peppermint essential oil in the palm of your hands, rub together, and inhale deeply for about 30 seconds. Ready to go! Better than a can of Redbull.
Sleep well: Add 3 drops of lavender essential oil to the rinse cycle when washing your sheets. Lavender is very calming and will help you get a peaceful night’s sleep.
Make your own scented tissues: This works for most boxes of tissues but works best on the rectangular and square boxes best. Carefully open the cardboard sides of a tissue box. Add 3 drops of essential oil to each cardboard flap of the tissue box. Close the flaps and tape shut. This will infuse all the tissues with the scent (and therapeutic benefits) of the essential oil. Great when you have a cold or a runny nose.
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