Best Treatments For Acne and Eczema
The best treatments for acne and eczema involve a combination of skin care products, diet, stress-relieving techniques, and exercise. And don’t forget daily SPF.
Acne is characterized by blocked pores filled with oil and dead skin cells. This is what creates those pesky red blemishes. To help treat it, a dermatologist may prescribe acne medication or creams.
1. Identify Your Triggers
Despite the fact that they both cause red, bumpy skin, acne and eczema are two completely different conditions. The similarities end there, though: Eczema can be itchy, but acne doesn’t itch; eczema can be caused by contact with certain things like poison ivy or metal jewelry; and eczema typically shows up on parts of the body that rub together, such as the backs of the knees and inside elbows, while acne usually occurs around the mouth and nose.
Acne is also triggered by hormones and can happen at any age, while eczema tends to appear as early as infancy and may last for life. The good news is that both acne and eczema can be improved with healthy lifestyle habits, including eating well, staying hydrated and getting plenty of sleep. And both can be helped by using products that are gentle on the skin, without any added chemicals or fragrances.
While there’s no cure for eczema, it can be managed and symptoms can improve with a combination of prescription creams, avoiding triggers and practicing healthy lifestyle habits. For example, if your eczema is triggered by contact with your clothing or blankets, try replacing them with a soft cotton fabric. And if you have it on your scalp, try our award-winning Scalp Oil, which contains purifying tea tree and nourishing borage oil, along with hemp seed and nettle oil. It’s perfect for those with eczema or sensitive scalp, but it’s also great for anyone who wants to keep their hair healthy and gorgeous!
And don’t forget that eczema is often exacerbated by stress, so making sure to get enough sleep and exercise (and speaking to a therapist or counselor, if needed) can help. And both acne and eczema are triggered by sun exposure, so make sure you’re wearing a good sunscreen every day — the best option is one that’s labeled oil-free or non-comedogenic, which means it won’t clog pores. Lastly, some people find that avoiding eggs, fish, peanuts and soy can reduce eczema flare-ups. So give it a go, and see how your skin responds!
2. Keep It Clean
Both acne and eczema require gentle cleansing that doesn’t over-dry or exfoliate. Over-exfoliation disrupts the skin’s microbiome and causes inflammation, which triggers both acne and eczema. For this reason, it’s important to keep your skin in balance by using products with gentle exfoliants like mandelic and lactic acid, as opposed to stronger alpha-hydroxy acids that can irritate the skin.
Both conditions can also benefit from daily SPF protection, which protects against sun damage and hyperpigmentation caused by the sun’s harmful rays. In addition, a healthy diet rich in probiotics and omega-3 fatty acids can help improve both complexions.
Acne is an inflammatory condition caused by excess oil (or sebum) that clogs pores on the surface of the skin. This can lead to blemishes including whiteheads, blackheads, cysts and nodules. It can also cause red, itchy patches that flake and ooze. Acne can occur anywhere on the body but is most common on the face, neck and back.
Eczema is an inherited chronic itch-and-scratch disease. Symptoms include dry, itchy and scaly patches of skin, often on areas with very thin skin such as the eyelids, armpits and inner elbows. It can also be triggered by allergens such as food, certain skin care products or metals (like gold jewelry) and stress. It can also become infected with the bacteria Staphylococcus aureus or fungi like yeast (athlete’s foot or jock itch).
Treatment for both conditions involves moisturisers, corticosteroids and topical prescription creams. It’s also a good idea to avoid the things that trigger your skin, such as harsh household cleaners and airborne pollutants. In addition, both eczema and acne can leave behind scars or hyperpigmentation, which may need to be treated with laser resurfacing, micro-needling, chemical peels or another solution that suits your specific skin type. If you are unsure what to do, visit a dermatologist for advice. They can work with you to figure out the best ways to treat your sensitivity and find solutions that will help you achieve clearer, healthier skin.
3. Moisturize Regularly
Itching and red, scaly skin are signs of both eczema and acne. However, if you’re experiencing a lot of red, itchy patches that don’t seem to be getting any better, or if you have acne and eczema on different parts of your body at the same time, it may be difficult to distinguish between the two conditions.
If you’re not sure if your itch is caused by eczema or acne, schedule an appointment with your dermatologist to find out what’s going on. A dermatologist will be able to help you develop a skincare routine that works for your condition.
Acne occurs when oil glands become blocked with a build-up of bacteria, dead skin cells, and other things that are found on the surface of your skin. This leads to the production of excess sebum and results in clogged pores, which often appear as pimples.
To keep skin healthy and reduce the risk of an acne outbreak, it’s important to moisturize regularly. Use a light, nourishing cream that’s non-comedogenic (won’t block pores) and formulated with an effective skin-rejuvenating ingredient like mandelic acid or lactic acid. You should also avoid scrubbing or peeling your skin, as this will irritate it and cause it to overproduce oils and lead to more breakouts.
Aside from using a moisturizing cream, there are other ways to keep your skin hydrated. During a bath or shower, make sure you use lukewarm water and avoid scrubbing to avoid irritating your skin. Also, don’t forget to moisturize right after you get out of the shower or bath. Putting on your moisturizer within three minutes after you rinse can help prevent moisture loss from occurring.
Moisturizers are formulated with a variety of oil and water content. The ointments and creams with more oil tend to be the best at treating eczema, since they can help to lock in moisture to keep your skin hydrated and supple. But whichever moisturizer you choose, make sure it’s one that doesn’t contain any perfumes or other irritant ingredients. This will help keep your skin calm and comfortable.
4. Keep It Healthy
The good news is that acne and eczema rarely occur on the same parts of the body at the same time, so treating different areas with different products should help keep both conditions at bay. Rivers suggests using a light, non-clogging moisturiser that won’t make your skin oily (like our Daily Moisturising Cream) and applying an ointment with antihistamines (like our Eczema Calming Ointment) to help prevent flare-ups. He also recommends avoiding irritants like harsh cleansers and perfumed soaps, which can be aggravating to sensitive skin.
Facial eczema is especially difficult to treat and, in fact, can sometimes be mistaken for pimples, but it’s actually a different condition called seborrheic dermatitis. It’s characterized by flakey, itchy patches of the skin that can be red and inflamed. This is often triggered by the same things as acne, such as contact with metals or skin care products and food allergies, but may also be a result of genetics or a hormone imbalance.
If your eczema is triggered by stress, try relaxing or meditating. Wearing loose clothing that won’t rub against your skin may also help reduce irritation. If you’re still experiencing symptoms, talk to your dermatologist about treatments that can help soothe inflammation. A topical corticosteroid can be a great option, but don’t use it more than twice a day or you risk overdoing it. Your doctor can also recommend some other treatments, such as avoiding hot showers and baths or replacing your ducted heating with electric or wood burning stoves that will allow you to control the temperature in your home.
Finally, try not to be too hard on yourself, as stress and anxiety can cause both eczema and acne to flare up. Instead, focus on the positive things in your life and make sure to stay hydrated. If your rash does flare up, don’t scratch it, as this will only increase the redness and irritation. If you can’t stop scratching, a steroid cream may be prescribed to help relieve itching and scabbing. Some people find that acupuncture or herbal remedies can also help manage itchiness and irritated skin.