Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Bathing for Beautiful Skin

Okay guys, don't scoff. I'm not saying you don't know how to bathe. I just know that I don't always follow "the rules" when it comes to washing my dry, sensitive skin.

Cleansing the skin washes away any collected allergens, excess oils, sweat, bacteria and dirt from the skin. Once your pores are clean, moist and open; this allows for better absorption of your favorite moisturizers and/or medicated creams.

Here are some tips on how to bathe yourself or your child with eczema:

Bathe in lukewarm water.

I know it's not as relaxing but if you must add more hot water, keep it to a minimum. Hot water only dries out your skin more once you leave the bath. Lukewarm water allows your skin to absorb more moisture.

Consider A Shower Filter

Our water is hard, harsh and full of chemicals.  Chemicals such as chlorine and chloramines do nothing for the wellness of our skin  (and often lungs ie. asthma sufferers). The best way to neutralize  both of these elements from the water is to purchase a Vitamin C Shower Filter or to add buffered vitamin C to your bathwater. Lush makes a Vitamin C Toner Tab but I have personally never used the product.

Bath Timed.

You really only need to stay in the bath for at least 10 minutes to allow the water to absorb into your skin. If you have a child it's okay to allow him or her to play in the water for as long as you like-just don't let them play in soapy water.

Avoid harsh soaps.

If your soap has a heavy fragrance, detergents, dyes or alcohols then it could help contribute to any dry skin condition. These ingredients pretty much wash away all of the needed natural oils (lipids) from your skin. Pay attention to labels and look out for soaps that contain as few ingredients as possible.

 Whats so special about non-soap cleansers? Well, they effectively remove the debris and bacteria from your skin without removing too much oil. I find that the more milky, creamier cleansers work best for dry sensitive skin. Some 'non-soap' cleansers include brands like Unscented Dove, Cetaphil and pHisoderm.You can get these from your local drug or grocery store. Also, if you care to do a little searching you may also find some great handmade soaps at online stores like

Immediate Moisture. 

Pat your skin dry instead of rubbing. The patting method allows some water to remain on the skin as well as lessening friction and irritation. As soon as you hop out of the bath have your best moisturizer ready to slather on. Any emollients, or medicated creams you apply actually locks in moisture to your skin so you want to do this within 3 minutes after taking your bath or shower.   

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