Navigating the Skincare Aisle: Ingredients to Avoid if You Have Eczema

Navigating the Skincare Aisle: Ingredients to Avoid if You Have Eczema

Hey beautiful! Your ride-or-die skincare squad is here to guide you through those overwhelming skincare aisles! Sis, we get it – those aisles are a beast, and decoding labels can be like cracking a secret beauty code. But don’t you worry, we're here to spill the tea on ingredients that might be setting your eczema on fire. 

This Blog at a Glance

Let's not waste time. Here's exactly what you're going to get in this blog post:
  • Learn how to decode skincare labels and avoid eczema triggers
  • Discover gentle alternatives for sulfate-free cleansing.
  • Beware of drying alcohols and hidden allergens 
  • The super addictive app we use for quick, easy ingredient analysis
  • Understanding Your Skincare Frenemies

    I remember when I was first learning what triggered my kids’ eczema through trial and error. I was SO FRUSTRATING and I had no clue what to look for or what to avoid! What I’m going to share today will help you avoid the mistakes I made and get you to your healing faster.

    Let me paint this picture for you – You're strolling down the skincare aisle, and suddenly, there they are – the culprits that could be triggering your eczema. First up, let's talk fragrances. That sweet-smelling lotion might be your go-to, but for eczema-prone skin, fragrances are often a big, “ABSOLUTELY NOT!” They can be irritating and lead to a nasty flare up. Make a fragrance-free options to keep your skin cool, calm and collected. The by A’amia Soothing Bath Bundle is the perfect example. It’s dye-free and fragrance free and packed with tons of healing, skin-loving ingredients.

    Step Away from the Sulfates

    I know, right about now your asking, “What the heck is a sulfate?” Simply put, sulfate is a group of mineral salts that can be found in nature or can be human-made. In everyday products, you can find sulfate compounds like SLS and SLES in:

    • Laundry detergent
    • Dish detergent
    • Liquid hand soap
    • Shampoo
    • Toothpaste
    • Face cleansers
    • Bath bombs

    Sulfate is often found in these products because they bind to oil, fat, grease, and dirt, removing them from the surface. Sulfates also make lather, which makes them fun and pretty in shampoo, soap and bath bombs. 

    Sulfates are like the drama queens of skincare – they love attention, but your eczema hates it. These bad boys, often found in cleansers and shampoos, can strip your skin of its natural oils, leaving it dry and irritated. Look for sulfate-free alternatives that cleanse without the unnecessary drama like our Coconut Milk Bath Scoops and African Black Soap.

    While I haven't personally tried this brand, its on our list of brands to try in 2024. I've heard nothing but good things about Signature Sudz. They make eczema-friendly, vegan household cleaning supplies and detergents. If you check them out, tell 'em by A'amia sent you.

    Signature Sudz Owners Jessica & Robb Tannan

    The Paraben Predicament

    Parabens might sound like your skincare BFFs, but they can be troublemakers for eczema-prone skin. These preservatives, often hiding in your favorite creams and lotions, can cause irritation. Choose products labeled "paraben-free" to keep your skincare routine drama-free.

    Alcohol Alert

    Not all alcohols are created equal, and for eczema warriors, some can be downright enemies. Avoid products containing high concentrations of denatured alcohol, isopropyl alcohol, or ethanol. These can be drying and irritating, making your eczema flare up instead of calming down. Other names for alcohol on labels are: ethyl alcohol, methyl alcohol or methanol, benzyl alcohol, cetyl, stearyl, cetearyl, or lanolin alcohol.

    Spotting Hidden Allergens

    Now, let's talk allergens. Ingredients like lanolin, a common moisturizing agent, can be a friend or foe depending on your skin. For some, it's a match made in heaven; for others, it can trigger irritation. Patch tests are your secret weapon – try a small amount and see how your skin reacts. For example, our Eczema Salve aka Natural Neosporin, contains lanolin and none of our clients have reported irritation. But because it can be hit-or-miss for some, we decided to revamp our formula and replace the lanolin with moisture-locking castor oil. Better to be safe than sorry. You can see what other ingredients are in it here.

    Jar of Eczema Salve with a beauty spatula, showing its creamy texture

    Decoding Labels Like Pros

    To turn that skincare aisle into your personal runway, flip those bottles and read those labels. Opt for products with short ingredient lists, focus on natural alternatives, and look for the words "hypoallergenic" and "dermatologist-tested" for that extra stamp of approval.

    Another thing to keep in mind, ingredients on product labels are listed from most to least. So, the first ingredient in a product is what it has the most of, the last is what is has the least of. For example this is the ingredient list for our Eczema Butter: Shea Butter, Cocoa Butter, Jojoba Oil, Neem Oil, Vitamin E, Avocado Oil, Colloidal Oatmeal, Arrow Root Powder. Shea Butter is the main character and Colloidal Oatmeal and Arrow Root Powder are the supporting cast members.

    Ingredient Reading Hack

    Are you like me and thinking to yourself, "I ain't got time to learn all these 'good' and 'bad' ingredients." Girl, we understand and that's why we're sharing this quick, easy hack. If you have an iPhone, you can download an app called Yuka. Simply scan the barcode on the product you want to know more about and instantly see how it affects your health. The app gives the product a rating and detailed information to help you understand the analysis of each product. It's a pretty cool app but don't blame us if you spend hours scanning everything in your house. This is your warning, it can be addictive. Don't say we didn't warn you, girl. 

    Yuka app results screen grab



    Remember, knowledge is power in the skincare game. Keep an eye out for these ingredients, and your eczema-prone skin will thank you for turning that aisle into a catwalk of calm, collected beauty.

    Did we leave anything off the list? Comment and let us know what ingredients you avoid.

    Got more questions? Email us or slide into our DMs on Instagram or Facebook.

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