5 Tools that Help with the Dry Irritated Skin of Eczema
Last updated: September 2023
Most of us with atopic dermatitis have our own favorite tools, which we use to try and keep our skin from being so itchy, flaky, and painful. We’ve tried all the cortisones, the lotions, and the allergy avoidance. Now I’d like to share some of the perhaps more unusual things I find helpful.
One of my favorite tools for eczema is a cuticle nipper. I did spend the money to get a quality pair. My dermatologist recommended it years ago to trim the dead skin on my fingers before I pulled it off, or it got caught and pulled, which would start a new crack and bleed. I don’t leave home without it. I recall one time it was taken away at the airport security check, so for flying, you need to put it in your checked luggage.
An unusual tool for eczema that I’ll never be without is packing tape. You may have read about my use for it in this previous article. It involves using the tape similarly to a wax strip but without tearing the skin off a bit. I normally just do my lower legs, although occasionally, my forearms benefit from it as well. This has now become a regular part of my routine about every two weeks or so, especially in bare-leg weather.
The Amopé Pedi Perfect. When I was so frustrated with the rough skin on my hands causing snags in my beautiful silk scarf, I decided to try an experiment. I used my Amopé Pedi Perfect to file/smooth the skin on my palms and fingertips. I often need to put on plastic gloves before touching fine fabrics that snag, such as my silk scarves. The Amope Pedi Perfect is a battery-powered roller file made for removing the dead skin on the feet. It comes with an extra coarse and a soft touch roller head. Putting on the soft touch one, I gave it a try. It worked like a charm but takes a bit more time than I had expected. It does take some care not to go over the same area too much and irritate the skin even more.
A stiff-bristle, long-handled back brush. When my old one started losing bristles, it took quite a while to find another with stiff bristles. I finally found one by Barbasol. It’s almost as stiff as an old-fashioned floor scrub brush! Use for dry brushing before the shower. It was a suggestion from a supermodel on TV a few years ago and actually helps. It feels good too!
Gloves - both white cotton and nitrile. When my eczema is flaring so much that my hands are split and bleeding, I use Watkins Medicated Ointment, covered by cotton gloves, to bed every night until it eases. When it is extremely bad, I cover those gloves with nitrile ones. I even keep a pair of nitrile gloves knotted up in my purse so I can help with cleanup after coffee at meetings. I refuse to use my eczema as an excuse to get out of doing anything.
What other tools do we need or use for eczema?
The one tool I am trying very hard to acquire is free but not easy - patience.
Do you have any favorite tools or unusual suggestions to share?
How does your eczema reoccurring make you feel?