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About eczema - part 1

Identifying your problem!


Recently we have lots of personal contacts needing consultation and requests regarding skin problems, drying out, redness and itching. Most of the time the symptoms are related to eczema. In this article we make a brief summary of the types and symptoms of eczema, so you can easier identify your skin issue.

In the next part we will summerize the possibilities how you can avoid eczema or if you already have eczema, how to minimize your symptoms or even how to get rid of them.

In the third part we will offer you ingredients, products and diy practices to relief and cure your eczema.


What is eczema

Woman hands with severe eczema.

Dermatitis is a skin inflammation. Eczema is the most common type of dermatitis. If your skin itches and turns red you may have eczema. Eczema first appears as an episode of itching and redness of the skin. You also may have tiny bumps or blisters. There are also some common symptoms for all types of eczema:

  • dry, scaly skin

  • redness

  • itching


Seeing a doctor

Doctor examining an elbow with eczema.

A skin doctor (dermatologist) can diagnose and treat eczema. It is very important that you see a doctor, and discover the reason of your eczema. To help the doctor diagnose your skin and find out what triggers your eczema it is very helpful if you are prepared with the following information:

  • what you eat and drink

  • what skin products, chemicals, soaps, makeup, and detergents you use

  • what activities you do, such as taking a walk outside in the woods (with or without gloves) or swimming in a chlorinated pool

  • how often and how long you take shower or bath, and the temperature of the water

  • writing a diary can also help to find a connection between your activities and the eczema.

An allergy specialist can also do a test. This test can help your doctor tell which substances trigger your eczema, so you can avoid them.

Meanwhile your are waiting for your diagnosis you can change your everyday cosmetics to natural ones. Check out our selection here.


Types of eczema

There are many types of eczema. The type depends on the cause, shape and location of the rash.


Atopic eczema (atopic dermatitis)

This type of eczema occurs repeatedly. It usually occurs in people with an inherited tendency to allergies like allergic asthma, hay fever or food allergies. Atopic eczema also appears in early life, usually before 18 months of age.

Babys face with red eczema patches.

Eczema location in babies:

  • face

  • neck

  • ears

  • torso

  • feet (top)

An elderly man showing his elbow with atopic eczema.

Location in children, teenagers and adults:

  • elbows

  • knees

  • ankle and wrist joints

  • hands

  • upper eye lids


  • irritated, red, dry, crusted patches

  • in case of infection, it may develop a wet look

  • scratching causes more irritation and increases the risk of infection


Contact eczema (contact dermatitis)

When irritants touch the skin, they can produce two types of contact dermatitis.

Irritant contact dermatitis is the direct irritation of the skin. It can be caused by prolonged contact with irritants such as:

  • detergents, fabric softeners

  • bubble bath, shower gels

  • irritant soap

  • sweat

  • saliva

  • urine

  • using/wearing products where chemicals are used for production (disposable diaper sanitary products and face masks)

The other type occurs in people who have an allergy to a specific substance. The most common natural allergens are poison ivy, poison oak and poison sumac. Or any artificial substance can cause an allergic reaction. Some example of these:

  • building materials

  • cleaning household products

  • deodorants

  • cosmetics

  • medications

  • metal

  • chemicals in: fragrances, skin cream and lotions, shampoos, shoes, clothing etc.


Symptoms can range from a mild redness to severe skin blistering or ulceration.

Natural handmade gentle soaps can be a good choice if you have sensitve skin. You can find our soap selection here.


Hand eczema

Female hands with severe hand eczema.

Hand eczema is limited to the hands. It can be related to atopic eczema or it can be a result of repeated hand washing, desinfectionating or exposure to strong detergents or chemicals. Occasionally, it is caused by an allergy.


Patches of dry, cracked skin with or without redness. Hand eczema may also cause itching, red bumps or blisters and scaling.

Relief for your cracked hands: here.


Nummular eczema

Male forearm with nummular eczema.

This eczema causes coin sized patches of irritated skin. Usual locations: legs, arms or chest. It usually occurs in adults. It can be related to atopic dermatitis and, less often, allergic contact dermatitis. It can also be an allergic reaction to a fungal infection even the fungal infection is elsewhere on the body.


Begins as small areas of irritation, then turn into round red, crusted or scaly patches.


Asteatotic eczema

This eczema dries the skin, causing fine cracks, often in the lower legs. It mostly occurs in elderly people. It is common during the heating period where the humidity is low.


Itching or stinging pain in areas of dry, cracked, red skin, with or without tiny bumps.


Stasis dermatitis

The location is on the calves, ankles and feet. It occurs in people who have varicose veins in the lower legs. The badly functioning veins cause blood to collect in the legs (stasis). This leads to leg swelling, which leads to stasis dermatitis.


Itching, fine red bumps, skin redness or darkening and weeping sores. If redness and tenderness develop suddenly, it could be caused by a secondary bacterial infection (should be checked by a doctor urgently).


Lichen simplex chronicus

This eczema is a reaction to repeated scratching or rubbing of the skin.

A person scratching his/hers upper arm causing lichen simplex chronicus.


Thickened leathery skin, with darkening of skin color, smaller bumps can be also present. It is very itchy, scratching makes it worse.


Seborrheic dermatitis

This type creates a greasier rash than usual for eczema. This scaly dermatitis commonly appears on the scalp of infants as cradle cap or in adults as dandruff. It can also affects the face, neck, around the nose area and at the scalp line.

An elderly man having seborrheic eczema around the scalp line and behind the ear.


Red, scaly patches with yellow, greasy crusts. These patches can be itchy or can cause burning. Patches appear most commonly on the scalp, but they also can occur elsewhere on the body: eyebrows, eyelids, ears and skin creases near the mouth and nose.

Using natural hair care products can eliminate all the unpleasant symptoms. You find our selection here.

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