Eczema flare-ups are such a pain in more ways than one. And if you are one of the 30 million Americans with eczema, you might also be spending a small fortune on expensive creams and soaps yet, still finding little relief from itchy, irritated skin.
If you are one of those people or care about one of those people, this article is for you. I am going to tell you how you can use a few simple plant-based ingredients at home to make an effective eczema relief soap.
What is Eczema?
First, there is a big difference between what causes eczema and what causes eczema symptoms. The symptoms of eczema are the redness, flaking, and irritation you feel during a flare-up of the condition itself.
Eczema is an umbrella term for different types of dermatitis, but more often than not, you’re dealing with atopic dermatitis. Dermatitis is an inflammatory disorder which means there are underline causes.
Researchers have already established that gut issues like Leaky Gut Syndrome and others are often associated with eczema. Recently, a study in the Journal of Allergy and Immunology said that eczema or atopic dermatitis is an autoimmune reaction. This explains why those expensive eczema treatments only work temporarily.
Like any ailment with an underlying issue, you can soothe the symptoms of eczema with topical treatments (like this fantastic herbal eczema soap), but getting the condition under control long-term could require some deeper work.
There are several things known to cause flare-ups:
- Laundry detergents
- Nutrition deficiencies
However, many medical professionals are still unaware of the underline causes of eczema, so this may be one we have to find ourselves. It’s a good thing we have herbs! So let’s look at what’s going into this homemade eczema soap recipe.
Chamomile is probably one of the most well-known and oldest medicinal herbs. It’s commonly used in cosmetics and is known to soothe inflammation and repair the skin. In a double-blind, randomized study, a cream made of chamomile was compared with 0.5% hydrocortisone cream and a placebo cream in patients with atopic eczema. After two weeks of treatment, the chamomile cream showed a slight superiority over 0.5% hydrocortisone and a marginal difference compared to the placebo.
Calendula is a mild herb used for centuries to calm skin inflammation. Calendula is safe enough for babies, yet it’s naturally antibacterial, antimicrobial, and anti-fungal. It’s also super hydrating and can even promote collagen production.
Isn’t lavender great for everything? Just about! Lavender is so widely used because it’s anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal, antimicrobial, and anti-depressant, preventing conditions such as impetigo and MRSA.
Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that helps to calm inflammation. Many people know to take oral vitamin E for skin conditions, but adding it to your homemade eczema soap can be just as effective. Vitamin E helps strengthen the skin barrier, protecting the skin from external toxins, and helps hold in moisture.
Castor oil contains a fatty acid called ricinoleic acid — but also oleic acid and linoleic acid. This oil has been around since the days of old and is highly favored in Ayurvedic traditions. Castor oil is anti-inflammatory and has pain-relieving properties. In addition, it’s antimicrobial and can help speed up recovery time. When you use your homemade eczema soap, you’ll feel a silky quality to your skin afterward that can—at least in part— be credited to the castor oil.
Many eczema sufferers already know they can’t use “normal” soaps without having an issue. Castile soap has become the go-to for many and is one of the three base ingredients of this soap. It contains no harsh ingredients and no additives. It’s made from vegetable oils and lye, making it a vegan option as well.
How to Make Herbal Soap for Eczema
You’re going to need these things:
- ½ cup of pure quality castile soap
- ½ cup distilled water
- ½ cup virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon of vitamin E oil
- 1 teaspoon of castor oil
- 1 teaspoon of calendula-infused oil
- 20 drops of organic essential lavender oil
- 20 drops of organic essential chamomile oil
- A container or dispenser for your soap.
Step 1: In a large bowl combine the water and the castile soap.
Step 2: Drop 20 drops of each chamomile and lavender essential oil right into the bowl.
Step 3: Add one teaspoon of each to the bowl: Vitamin E oil, calendula oil, and castor oil.
Step 4: Add the olive oil and stir very gently until completely incorporated. The soap mixture will separate as it sits, so you must give it a gentle little shake when you use it.
Step 5: Pour the bowl’s contents into a container that is easy to dispense. You can purchase soap dispensers readily online.
Step 6: If you are using a soap dispenser, place the pump lid on top of your container.
And you’re done! I really love using a foaming soap dispenser for this soap.
How to Use
Place your soap where it can easily be used by eczema sufferers. This stuff smells amazing! You immediately feel a soft coating on your skin after use. Once your skin dries, there is no sticky residue leftover, just moisturized and protected skin.
This herbal eczema soap is mild and gentle enough to use on children. It should last a couple of weeks on the counter, but you probably won’t have any problems using it up.
You can also add other essential oils and change the scent. But it would be best if you research first, to ensure that whatever essential oils you use won’t make your eczema worse. Happy mixing!
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DIY Anti-Microbial Laundry Soap