Skin Deco

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Eczema: Makeup and Other Ramblings

In a previous post about my Daily Makeup Staples, I got a comment asking me to share on makeup products that I would use when eczema strikes.

Logic tells us that when your skin is irritated, don't mess with it further especially with makeup. Unless my plan is to hide at home or be covered with a paper bag. It's awful enough that the world has to see my dry, flaky, reddened skin and then I have to show them my face sans makeup... In many situations, not wearing makeup at all is unacceptable. At least for those who wear makeup daily.

So, what to do?
Read on for my makeup tips during an eczema flare as well as some related ramblings.

Step 1: Calm the Skin

To soothe my itching skin and smooth out the flakiness, I'd reach for my Monistat Chafing Relief Powder-Gel. I bought it as a foundation primer (dupe for Smashbox Photo Finish Primer) though it's really a product that relieves chafed and irritated skin for sensitive areas ie. inner thighs, bikini are, breasts and underarms. On the face, it works like a charm to soothe the irritation and smooth out my complexion.

Foundations are typically drying so I avoid them when I have an outbreak. Instead, I go for my Madara Tinting Fluid which gives a very light coverage and doesn't worsen irritated skin. To set, I'd use a light dusting of mineral powder foundation.

Step 2: Bring Out the Eyes

If the rash is mostly concentrated on your cheeks or forehead, divert attention away from the skin and to the eyes. I sometimes get flakiness on my eyelids as well. What I like to do is apply a colored eyeliner, define my lower lash line and apply substantial amount of mascara.

Don't forget the eyebrows! If you have them really well-groomed, they're gonna frame your eye makeup and make your eyes stand out better.

Here's a colored-eyeliner look tutorial
Here's an eyebrow tutorial

Step 3: Pout and Blush

I dislike using blush or lip color when I have eczema because the flakiness and bumpiness would just make the application look very uneven. If you really need to have color on your lips and cheeks, you can go for tinted lip balms and cream/liquid blush. Those products would reduce the appearance of flakiness and blotchiness.

Remember, you're not doomed to not wear makeup just because you have Eczema!


Recently, I received this comment on my "Eczema Part 1: The Low-Down" post by cafy101.

"Hi there, I am from the Philippines. I fear that I have Eczema on my lips. I suspect that sudden change of temperature triggers my allergy on my lips. Would that be possible. I haven't checked it yet from a derma doc but I am afraid I have it with all the symptoms and exact pictures. It's very dry and itchy. Like I wanna lick it all the time to make it wet. First, I will suffer itchy lips, then very red lips then the next morning, its like covered by a plastic skin,kinda.. Like I can't open my mouth very well. Not comfortable to talk. I can't think of any allergy like food or soap because the first thing that would come to my mind when it strikes, the change of temperature like aircon, cold water or cold weather. and by the way, I started to have this like 4-5 years ago. What will I do? The doctor just gave me a lip balm but it's not helping. Thank you. Your post is very helpful."

Cafy here experiences a very similar condition to what I often have. One of the main reasons why I don't normally do lip swatches or really wear much lip color for that matter, is because of the eczema on my lips. On really bad days, my lips would crack and bleed when I stretch them eg. by smiling. I've had this condition on and off for 15 years!
  1. Change of temperature can definitely trigger eczema. Basically a lot of things may trigger a rash; cold air, friction, dryness, sweat, stress, salt water, sun, hormonal changes etc.
  2. Licking your lips will only make the eczema WORSE! Refrain from licking your lips whenever it feels dry. Rather, apply lip balm whenever your lips feel irritatingly chapped.
  3. Aircon is drying to the skin, which could also trigger eczema. To prevent, keep your skin well-moisturized at all times. Hydrating with a facial spray will also make your skin feel more comfortable.
  4. Avoid from applying lipsticks or lipglosses, especially those that contain glitter. If applying lip balm alone doesn't seem to improve your condition, you may want to consider getting a steroid treatment from the clinic. However, I personally try to not be dependent on steroid as it may cause discoloration.
  5. Be aware of what triggers a rash whether is it a certain type of product, ingredient or food. When you recognize the allergy pattern, you'd know better how to handle those allergens and reduce the occurrences of an eczema outbreak.

Atopic Dermatitis aka Eczema is something that can occur at any point of life. It may be temporary, long term or even lifelong. Fortunately, these days there are ample of options out there to help deal with skin sensitivity. However, to keep eczema in control is much more than just applying the right products. It's also about adjusting your lifestyle and habits.

Do you have any eczema-control tips? Please do share!


Jamilla Camel said...

I don't have eczema,but I have sensitive desert dry skin! I use products by La Roche-Posay (Toleraine) and Bioderma when my skin is really irritated. That, and SPF 50 - 100 all the time, because sunlight aggravates my skin. I break out in an IPL rash due to a UVA allergy, and I get little red blisters all over!

lyn said...

Thanks for such an excellent article! I have an eczema patch on my leg and haven't really been able to wear short skirts in a while :-( I've tried all sorts including steroid creams but am cutting them out as they are not usually meant for long term use. My face is really dehydrated and can result in scaly, flaky skin too. I need to be more diligent about applying hydrating products but am sometimes so lazy.

Jen said...

I get eczema around my eyes and no where else T___T ugh, damn. Thanks for such an awesome post tho :D

Bugs said...

my lips problem started 2yrs ago... I dono what happen but all of a sudden the corners of my lips cracked n bleed with no warning at all. They heal n then crack as they please like when i open my mouth to eat or talk....the tiny lip corner area can have 3~4 cracks at one time !!.. And then oso, the burning n red spots in the lips, itchy lip line..bla bla bla... And the worst of all, i've got the permanent wrinkles from the cracks on the corners of my lips now !!

xin said...

very useful tips! i am unable to share any tips since i have no personal experience with it, but i have read about how emu oil is amazing for eczema. can't be sure unless someone can confirm

Helda said...

Hi Connie!

I'm so happy you finally posted this article!! I've been waiting for this since I commented your post. Thanks for the awesome article, very informative.

After one month, my face has started to calm down and now my face looks pretty normal but there are some scars but I'm not too worried about that. During the flare ups, I used oatmeal as my cleanser and coconut oil or olive oil as my moisturiser. I could not wear my face cream that I normally used because my face was too dry and any cream I used would be soaked by my skin within minutes. But olive oil or coconut oil wasn't enough that time, so I have to apply steroid creams as well. My tips to all sufferers are you need to hydrate and moisturise your skin all the time and drink lots of water. And try taking Flaxseed oil and drink diluted Apple Cider Vinegar to control eczema.

Connie De Alwis said...

Jamilla: Ouch! that sounds painful. I remember reading about your sun-sensitivity. Hope it's under control now that you know what you can use to handle them

lyn: Welcome! :) I'll have to admit that when it comes to eczema on anywhere else besides my face, I put in little care. And sometimes I just pop in the pill and plaster up the area (cuz it'd be so sore and red). That's a bad example! So don't be lazy to hydrate!

Connie De Alwis said...

Jen: :( I know how you feel. Use night time to treat your eyes. It'll help a lot.

Bugs: I'm no doctor but that sounds more like cold sore to me though. You'll have to pop by the pharmacy to get ointment for cold sores. One of the best ways to control them is to watch your stress levels.

Connie De Alwis said...

Xin: I've heard of emu oil but hv never tried! What is it exactly?? Oil extracted from emu?? Personally, I prefer to go for botanical ingredients but I'd try anything once!

Helda: Sorry it took so long! Great tips! Thanks for sharing :) I'm glad your skin is better. I've heard of tomatoes to be good intake for controlling eczema.

mayaari said...

My chin/jawline gets an eczema breakout in the winter, when the humidity levels drop where I live, and the air gets colder and drier. Drinking water to make sure I'm hydrated helps, but whenever the dry patches show up, I switch my cleanser to a creamier, non-foaming version and use vitacreme to moisturize. At night I'll use Aquaphor until the patches have cleared.

If I've got to wear makeup, BB cream, cream blush, and a light layer of mineral moisturizer hide the eczema well, even if it means I have to use blotting paper a little more.

Bugs said...

hey Connie, thanks for the reply. From the article on the internet, lots of causes for my condition from cold sore, vit B defeciency, mould or bacteria infection to allergy..... i wonder how do i get cold sore in this hot n humid m'sia weather. So, till today still no idea how or where i got it. But your are right on stress...on stressful days my lips n corners are super sensitive. Thanks again.

Gluta C said...

you want skin care products?

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