I have been an eczema sufferer since I was a child. I realise now that I was very lucky, as it was mild and it appeared predominantly on my cheeks. At its worse, it did make me feel a bit self-conscious, particularly when well-meaning friends or family would ask what was on my face. But I have to admit, that it is only in reading other people’s stories, that I realised that this condition can have such a negative impact for many.
For me, I now use mine as a sign that I haven’t been looking after myself or eating properly and I always know exactly what I need to do. I am also an Aromatherapist so it is relatively easy to make up a product to ease my symptoms. But that hasn’t always been the case. As with most sufferers, I was prescribed with aqueous creams, steroid creams etc. But when I hit my late teens my eczema got worse and the steroids creams got stronger. Over this period of time and into my twenties, I noticed my complexion had lightened. I first put this down to age, but after being advised to stop using strong steroids on my face. I realised that this was the cause and I needed to try and find the root cause of my eczema. After lots of persistence, my GP agreed to send me for allergy testing and I discovered I was allergic to Parabens and a few other substances. This was the late 90s and Parabens were in all of my beauty and hair products. I literally came home after the results and chucked out 80% of things had been using. It was a real eye opener, but it left me at a loss as to what products I could use. This was the start of the Made by Pure Hands brand you know today. It was my inability to find products to use, that led me to create and my own and find my love of Aromatherapy. Over the years through study and working with clients, I have learnt that this condition has many triggers which can make it hard to find the root cause of the condition. But it is a journey I encourage eczema sufferers to take, because once you know your triggers, you learn how to manage the condition. I realise this can be like finding a needle in a haystack, as there are a whole host of triggers. Dust, diet, beauty products, stress, even your hormones can be a trigger the condition. But whilst you are on your journey, many Complementary Therapies can assist you, and help to manage the condition. Here are my top tips to start you in the right direction. Get a proper Diagnosis – Knowing more about your condition will enable you to find out what type eczema you have. This will help you on your journey. Get an Allergy Test – A diagnosis will start with an allergy test. It’s good to know which substances you are allergic to, so you can limit or stop contact with them to improve the condition. Your GP can send you for allergy testing, or if you don’t want to wait, go private. Document your Eczema Journey - Is there certain times of the year, month, week when your eczema is worse? Seasonal weather could also be a trigger. As could where you live (in terms of hard water areas compared to areas that have softer water areas). Do you notice that your eczema is worse when you are stressed, or are going through a difficult period? Investigate your Diet