Eczema and psoriasis are common skin conditions that present with varying degrees of severity. While they are different in nature, with eczema causing red, itchy, and dry skin, and psoriasis causing distinct red, scaly, and well-defined patches, both complaints have one thing in common: There is no simple cure.
Because they are caused by a combination of immune system activation, genetics, environmental triggers and stress, it is often difficult to get to the root cause of these conditions. Which is why daily management with topical skincare products is crucial.
Worldwide, 20% of children and 3% of adults have some form of eczema
Managing eczema and psoriasis in families can be difficult, not least because it’s difficult to stop children from scratching, and children often fuss over heavy creams and bath time skincare rituals. But a consistent daily routine is essential in managing these uncomfortable skin complaints in families. With effective daily care, you’ll be able to maintain skin health and hydration, and give skin its best chance at being irritation and itch-free.
Occlusive skincare ingredients seal off the skin from air, water, or anything else getting in or out. Mineral oil is an occlusive skin care ingredient and is commonly found in eczema and psoriasis targeted creams. It’s not harmful for skin (as long as it’s been purified), but if skin is not hydrated in the first place, it is of little value other than maintaining the status-quo.
Hydrating skincare ingredients literally add moisture to the skin so that it becomes more elastic and more supple. Tightness, flakiness, and dry patches clear and skin feels soft and smooth.
For sufferers of eczema and psoriasis, the goal of daily care is to consistently improve skin health. This is why hydration is key, because there is no skin health without adequate hydration. When people with dry skin conditions use occlusive ingredients (think petroleum or mineral oils), they are not giving skin additional moisture. They are merely coating the surface of already-dry skin so that nothing can get in or out.
The hydrating ingredients that you use every day should be absorbent, transporting, and easily recognised by the skin. For a daily skin care experience that irritated skin will enjoy, look for soothing natural ingredients like shea butter (intensely hydrating, anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory), niacinamide (healing, soothing and smoothing), and squalane (softening, transporting, and super-absorbent.)
Try: Essentials Body Cream for eczema-prone skin
Anyone with eczema knows that the wrong soap, bodywash, or cleanser can intensify symptoms. In fact, anything that comes in contact with skin needs to be considered carefully. The wrong cleaning product can dry out and irritate skin, but at the same time, it’s important that your skin is cleaned properly. Proper cleaning minimises the risk of infection and ensures that you get optimal benefit from creams and lotions that are applied after showering. When choosing a body wash or soap, you need one that will thoroughly cleanse your skin without drying it or causing irritation.
Here’s what you should look for when choosing skin-cleaning products:
Avoid harsh ingredients
Look for soaps that are specifically formulated for sensitive skin. The goal is to enhance the skin’s natural ability to keep itself hydrated. Anything that makes your skin feel tight or dry should be avoided. Non-foaming body washes are normally a better choice because they don’t contain chemical foaming agents like SLS.
Look for products that have been clinically tested, approved by dermatologists, and in the case of families, paediatrician-approved. You’ll know for sure that they are suitable for sensitive skin and that your entire family can use them.
Fragrance can be an allergen which can set-off symptoms of dry skin conditions. Look for cleansers that are fragrance-free.
Try: Essentials Body Wash for sensitive skin
Every skin complaint is a manifestation of skin that is craving balance. In simple terms, healthy skin is a healthy balance of oil and water. Dry, itchy, or flaky skin needs gentle care and nourishing ingredients on a consistent basis to nurse it back to health.
There is no quick-fix solution for extremely dry skin conditions. The key is to give your skin nourishment and care every single day. Look for ingredients that are gentle but effective and provide a degree of relief from itchy skin. If you like using a product, it’s more likely that you will use it so the texture of your skincare products shouldn’t be overlooked. Avoid heavy, oily creams that leave skin feeling greasy and instead opt for formulations that are lightweight, soft, and absorbent. Your daily skincare routine should be something you look forward to, even if you suffer with eczema. Some skincare ingredients that are super-effective for treating and relieving dry-skin conditions are:
Gotu Kola Leaf Extract:
• Heals scarring and wounds
• Calms inflammation
• Fights free radical damage
• Protects skin
• Repairs skin
• Relieves itchy skin
Avena Sativa Oat Kernel Extract
• Natural skin cleanser
• Smoothes and softens skin
• Relieves itchy skin
Try: Essentials Hand Cream for dry skin conditions
Taking proper care of sensitised skin is important. And it is often a family-wide issue because genetic factors commonly play a role in dermatitis and psoriasis-related conditions. For healthy and hydrated skin, everyone needs clean and effective skincare products in their daily routine. But families are diverse which makes finding creams that work for everyone and that everyone enjoys using – baby, adult, fussy toddler and growing teen – a challenge. The Pestle & Mortar Essentials Range is a collection of clean, clinical, and effective daily skincare products that are dermatologist and paediatrician-approved so that the entire family can enjoy healthy, hydrated, skin every day.