Eczema and other sensitive skin conditions leave the skin’s outermost layer weak and vulnerable to irritants, bacteria, allergens, and other potentially harmful environmental factors. This damaged outer skin barrier also makes it harder for the skin to hold onto moisture, and dry, itchy skin can make eczema worse. It’s a nasty cycle, but one that can be broken with the right kind of moisturizer.
Moisturizers are vital interventions for anyone with dry, itchy, irritated, sensitive, or eczema-prone skin as they help protect and strengthen the skin’s outermost barrier. However, finding the right kind of moisturizer can be tricky, especially for children.
Ingredients you need in a great moisturizer for eczema
Look for these ingredients when shopping for a moisturizing cream for eczema:
Sometimes referred to as provitamin B5, Panthenol is used in a variety of hair and skin products because it helps hydrate the skin and reduce the amount of water evaporation from the skin, which is called transepidermal water loss (TEWL). Panthenol reinforces the skin barrier to help lower the amount of TEWL, which can then help improve eczema symptoms like redness, dryness, and itching.
Licorice Root Extract
The licorice root extract is a plant extract that helps soothe common symptoms of eczema like redness and irritation. Made from a lengthy process that involves boiling the root and evaporating excess liquid to form a concentrated extract, this effective and natural ingredient goes by many names, including: Glycyrrhetinic Acid, Potassium Glycyrrhetinate, Glycyrrhizic Acid, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, and Stearyl Glycyrrhetinate.
It’s best to look for an eczema cream that lists Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, as this form of licorice root extract is not absorbed through the skin.
Glycerin is a humectant, or a hygroscopic substance that locks onto moisture to keep whatever it is applied to moist. When used in a cream, glycerin is very effective at drawing moisture into the skin. In fact, a large study of more than 6,000 people found that people that used a cream made with glycerin reported their skin to be improved, as opposed to those that used a similar cream that didn’t include glycerin.
Emollients are all about lubrication. The part of a moisturizer that helps keep skin smooth and soft, they prevent water loss to lock in moisture all day. Creams generally contain more emollients than lotions, which makes them thicker and more adept at helping the skin retain moisture. Avoid emollients with fragrance, instead opting for more mild shea butter, fatty acids, coconut oil, oleic acid, or other similar types.
What to Avoid
It’s also important to be aware of what a good moisturizer should not have, as avoiding triggers goes a long way toward preventing irritated skin. Watch out for common ingredients like preservatives, acids, and fragrances.
Preservatives like methylparaben or butylparaben are designed to prevent bacteria from growing in cosmetic products. While bacteria are bad, these harsh chemicals can inflame sensitive skin. Instead, try moisturizers that have natural preservatives like grapefruit seed extract or neem oil.
Acids like glycolic acid, salicylic acid, and retinol are put in some cosmetics to dry out oily skin, which is the last thing people with eczema need.
Fragrances are also incredibly triggering for sensitive skin. No matter how subtle a scent is, it can still cause a flare-up. Look for moisturizers that say “fragrance-free” on the label and do not have any of those acids on the ingredients list.
A Pediatrician’s Solution to Eczema
Dr. Eddie’s Happy Cappy Moisturizing Cream is a clinically tested solution for soothing dry, itchy, irritated, sensitive eczema-prone skin in children of all ages. Free of fragrances, dyes, sulfates, parabens, and phthalates, this moisturizing cream is instead made with natural ingredients like Licorice Root Extract (Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate) to help soothe redness and glycerin to help protect and restore the skin’s barrier. We carefully chose the ingredients for Dr. Eddie’s Happy Cappy Shampoo to ensure our products are safe for kids of all ages.
Try our non-greasy baby eczema cream twice a day for fast-acting relief.