Natural Remedies for Eczema
The goal of eczema treatments is to relieve and prevent itching because it’s uncomfortable, and leads to infection. A second goal is to heal the skin and prevent future eczema flares. There are over the counter as well as prescribed treatments to help relieve symptoms and prevent infection, but there are natural remedies that can also be very helpful.
Natural Oils & Gels
- Organic cold pressed virgin coconut oil is wonderfully soothing and moisturizing when used topically. It’s also reasonably inexpensive when compared to many dermatological creams. Apply after a warm bath then dress in itch suppressing eczema garments. You can buy eczema garments here.
- Vitamin E oil can also be used topically. It comes in gel caps that you can break and use the liquid. Look for natural D-alpha tocopherol with mixed natural tocopherols. Read labels closely and avoid vitamin E acetate.
- Aloe is another excellent topical option. You can use aloe vera gel which is particularly good if you can use it from a freshly cut aloe vera leaf. You can also combine it with vitamin E. Wear eczema clothing to keep these messy treatments in place and to stop the itch.
- Boil ground horsetail plant or horsetail herbs in a liter of water for 10 minutes. 50 grams of horsetail is ideal. Filter the liquid into your bath water and take a 10-minute bath. Magnesium oil added to the bath can have excellent effects too.
- If you live near the ocean or the sea, exposure to the salt water can help to dry the skin rather than to moisturize it which improves the skin irritation for many people. Many people’s skin condition shows improvements after a trip to the ocean so if you live nearby, head on over for a dip. You can create a healing ocean in your own bathtub with this dead sea salt soak for eczema.
- Magnesium baths are a natural way to help improve your eczema. Soaking in Epsom salts or magnesium flakes along with a few tablespoons of Himalayan salt can have a similar effect to visiting the ocean.
- If you have allergies make sure to do a test spot on your skin before using a bath soak or salt.
Topical Tea Applications
- Chamomile tea made from fresh dried herbs can be very soothing when applied topically. Brew the tea by steeping it for 20-25 minutes, and then apply to the affected eczema area using gauze. Apply the tea for 20 minutes at a time 1-4 times a day.
- Similarly, calendula, a marigold flower, can be brewed into a tea. Apply to the affected area 1-2 times a day.
- The addition of lavender essential oil can be added to these liquids, approximately 5 drops.
- If you have allergies make sure to do a test spot on your skin before applying liberally.
Vegetables Used Topically
- Thin slices of a whole organic cucumber soaked in water for 2-6 hours creates a liquid that can be added to a clean cloth or gauze and applied as needed. Use only the liquid and remove the cucumber slices before applying.
- Boiled carrots can be used as a topical remedy. Peel three organic carrots and boil them until soft, then mash them into a smooth paste. Apply to affected areas for 15 minutes once a day and then rinse with cool water and pat dry.
- Vitamin D supplementation is quickly becoming more mainstream as studies show that supplementing vitamin D can help with eczema, and that more severe eczema is correlated with lower levels of vitamin D. Taking vitamin D supplements is a safe and inexpensive option that may be worth considering. We recommend vitamin D drops. Check with your pharmacist about proper dosage.
- Gentian tincture (10 drops) can be taken before each meal to help the digestive system eliminate toxins that can irritate the skin. This remedy can be taken as often as needed.
- Make a brew of 1 tbsp. of ground juniper berry (medical/food grade) + 1 tbsp. sage + 1 tbsp. thyme brewed in water and left to steep for 5-15 minutes. Drink this in the evening before bed.
- Cod liver oil, hemp seed oil, and other oils rich in Omega 3 are good for your health and good for your skin. Consider adding an Omega 3 supplement to your diet either as an oil (by the spoonful or in a smoothie) or in capsule form.
- Probiotics and probiotic-rich foods are good for your gut and can be helpful to your skin. Ask your health food store for a good probiotic. Also, try to include probiotic foods like kombucha, water kefir (dairy-free), and sauerkraut in your diet.
- Some people find gelatin-rich foods to be good for the skin, as well as for hair and nails.
If you’ve had a successful experience using a natural remedy not included on this list, please let us know about it. We’d be very interested to hear about your treatment and experience.