If you’re suffering from eczema and wondering how you can reduce your symptoms, the products you use to do your laundry are probably not the first thing that come to mind. But did you know that the laundry detergent you use could be contributing to your eczema flare-ups?
Keep reading to discover which laundry detergent is best for eczema so that you can start using it today.
Please keep in mind that although these tips and information have worked for several sufferers, we are in no way medical professionals. If you’re experiencing severe symptoms or have a topical infection, it is always best to seek medical advice immediately.
Why Your Laundry Detergent Matters
When you’re living with eczema, your skin is already more sensitive than most. This is due to a damaged skin barrier which results in skin being more vulnerable to irritants and allergens. Examples of generally harmless ingredients that can affect those with eczema or sensitive skin include certain soaps, textiles, fragrances, toxic ingredients found in creams and moisturizers – and chemicals found in laundry detergents.
The truth is, many laundry detergents are not actually pH balanced, but rather, very alkaline. In addition, conventional detergents contain chemical ingredients that are known to be harmful to the body and skin, such as:
- Sodium Lauryl Sulfate
- Sodium Laureth Sulfate
- Chlorine Bleach
- Ammonium Sulfate
These chemicals can also further exacerbate symptoms and cause irritation or inflammation to already sensitive skin.
What To Look for in Laundry Detergent
The best laundry detergent for eczema sufferers will be free from harsh chemicals and irritants. Keeping in mind that conventional laundry detergents build up on your clothing over time and can aggravate your skin by rubbing against it all day, look for a truly natural detergent. This will drastically help speed up the healing process.
In short, avoid chemical detergents that never truly wash out and opt for a hypoallergenic laundry detergent for eczema instead.
Recommended Laundry Alternatives for Eczema
The SmartKlean Laundry Ball is the best detergent for sensitive skin because of its natural, non-toxic, and eco-friendly properties.
Plus, it won't leave behind any residue on your clothing like detergents do. Considering that 2% of a garment's weight comes from laundry detergent residue, that’s a huge advantage! Free of harsh chemicals and gentle on the skin, it works great for both babies and adults suffering from eczema, psoriasis, or sensitive skin in general.
For clothing that gets stained from stubborn substances such as berries, blood, grass, oil, or red wine, check out this SmartKlean Natural Stain Remover. Carefully handcrafted with all natural ingredients, it’s great for removing stains without aggravating your eczema. Made with hypoallergenic ingredients and free from artificial dyes and fragrances, it’s truly a powerful, all-natural stain remover.
Also - it’s easy to use: simply moisten the fabric, gently rub the stick on the stain until it lathers, then pop into the laundry as usual.
Finally, if you want you clothes to have a fresh scent when you remove them from the dryer, but are worried that artificial fragrances may trigger your eczema, consider using a few drops of essential oils. For effective results, cut an old piece of clothing into squares, add some drops of your favourite essential oil, and throw it into the dryer with your wet clothes. The outcome will be an aromatic load of laundry – without the nasty side effects!
While it may take time, effort, and perhaps even several attempts to find the right laundry regimen for your skin, that’s okay. Remember, everyone is unique and there is no single detergent that works for everybody.
If changing your laundry detergent does not help, we suggest reading our blog post on Textile Dermatitis an allergy to synthetic fibers found in everyday clothing.
Bio: Laura is a contributor and content developer for The Eczema Company. She is in no way a medical professional. Her comments, suggestions, and reflections are not intended to replace any medical advice. Always seek the help of a medical professional before undertaking any diet or lifestyle changes.