While there is no cure for eczema, or atopic dermatitis, there are things that you can do at home to potentially help with some of the symptoms. The best essential oils for eczema “may improve hydration; moisturize, soothe, and calm the skin; and reduce inflammation and itching,” Alina G. Bridges, DO and dermatologist at the Mayo Clinic, told Bustle in an interview.
How do I use essential oils?
According to Dr. Bridges, you should definitely not take an essential oil straight from the bottle and rub it onto your skin. Instead, dilute the essential oil in a carrier oil (she recommends coconut oil, sunflower oil, sesame oil, almond oil, jojoba oil, or argan oil). After the essential oil is diluted, she noted, “It can be applied to the skin, added to a bath, or diffused into the air for aromatherapy.” You can also add essential oils to a cream (Dr. Bridges recommends shea butter) and rub it into your skin.
Before using any essential oil for the first time, though, Dr. Bridges recommends testing it out: Apply a small amount with a cotton swab to the inner arm and look for signs of a reaction like redness, itching, burning, or discomfort.
How do I know which essential oils to use?
When picking out essential oils, you should always look for ones in glass bottles (never plastic because oils can actually dissolve the plastic which will contaminate the oil). You’ll also want to avoid buying essential oils that have any additives or preservatives, or have already been diluted.
Now, it’s important to know that you shouldn’t just use any essential oils and expect to see improvement in your eczema. Below you’ll find six essential oils to consider.