What Causes Eczema, and How to Get Rid Of It

Rachel Nussbaum

Girl looking at hands

Most people probably think of winter as the season of dry, scratchy skin woes (it’s real life, but also because marketers break out the big guns for moisturizers around that time of the year), but we’ve got breaking news: skin can be problematic all year round! We know, we were also shocked to hear it. Because while many of us think we’re out of the eczema woods during the summer months, it could be the culprit behind those weird summer rashes we all get and never tell anyone about and hope will just go away. Who knew!

Dr. Judy Levine, one of the dermatologists on Eucerin’s Skin First Council, did (of course), so we got the down low from her on what eczema really is, and what sufferers should avoid.

Eczema is obviously an issue that affects a lot of people. Why does it flare up in the summertime?

There are those people who are the summer eczema people, and those people who are the winter eczema people. The summer eczema people are usually sensitive to the salt content of their sweat, so sweat can be very irritating to some people’s skin. Or, chlorine in the pool. So that’s the two groups of people that I see in the summer, and those people are fine in the winter. They love the cold weather, and come the hot weather, their eczema flares. And then there’s the group of people who are amazing in the summer because the sun, the humidity, is awesome for them, and winter dries out their skin.

Eczema really just means sensitive skin, and some people are allergic, or sensitive really, to fragrances, to dyes in their clothing. Some people only have it in the summer because they’re allergic to the leather in their sandals, and the leather irritates their skin. Or nickel on jeans – some people only get it in the winter because they wear jeans in the winter, and in the summer, they’re wearing shorts with elastic. So it really depends on what the ingredient is that they’re sensitive to, in the long run.

Levine also noted that to treat eczema, sensitive skin products (like Eucerin) are needed – which is why the brand is developing an entire line devoted the the skin problem. Look out for in drugstores soon!

Image via Istock

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