The Holy Grail of Eczema Creams and Treatments

Many desperate parents out there are searching for the absolute best eczema cream for children, babies, and toddlers. 

The Holy Grail of Eczema Creams and TreatmentsWell to get a definitive answer once and for all, we polled parents on Facebook for the “holy  grail of eczema treatments” available and read through over 190 responses! 

The great news – we’ve got a clear winner. Even better news – we’ve compiled over 20 other amazing and effective treatments

Since eczema can vary between individuals, it’s important to have multiple options to try in your back pocket. And to make it easy, we’ve divided all of these treatments into categories.

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Let’s dive right in and start with the winner supreme…. 

The Undisputed Holy Grail of Eczema Cream

CeraVe Moisturizing Cream

CeraVe cream (NOT the lotion, as many parents were quick to point out) won by a landslide as the absolute best eczema product for babies, toddlers, and kids. 

Use it consistently, at least twice a day, for an active eczema break out. For kids who are eczema prone, use it daily to prevent future episodes. 

Many parents say this “magic blue tub” is the only over-the-counter product that works as well as prescriptions. 

The Runner-Ups

These two contestants were extremely close runner ups in the search for the holy grail of eczema treatment. 

Aveeno Eczema Therapy Cream

Read through their amazon reviews and you’ll think you struck gold! Some use it consistently for eczema spots and others just use Aveeno Eczema Therapy Cream as the world’s best lotion. 

People absolutely love their line of products and they even have a version specifically formulated for babies

Aveeno Eczema Therapy Cream has been awarded the National Eczema Association Seal of Approval as it’s been clinically shown to help relieve the key symptoms of eczema, including itchiness, the appearance of redness, dryness and irritation

 

Tubby Todd All Over Ointment

Parents describe Tubby Todd as a “miracle cream”. It’s an overall godsend for everything from eczema to cradle cap to baby acne. 

Definitely one of those products you always want to have on hand. Many parents even use it themselves as a great moisturizer! 


Other Highly Recommended Creams and Lotions

These might not have been the grand prize winners, but they were definitely among the favorites so had to be mentioned! 

Weleda, Skin Food

Rich plant oils like rosemary, chamomile, and pansy make this ultra-rich body cream unique.

“It’s the absolute best” said one mom we polled. 20,000 amazing amazon reviewers agree! 

 

Dream Cream (from Lush

Many people know Lush has mastered the art of soaps and bath bombs, who knew they had moisturizing creams figured out too?

Dream Cream is a great product for those with very sensitive skin as it’s packed with soothing and gentle ingredients like rose, lavender, and oat milk. 

It’s definitely effective enough for the eczema prone but at the same time gentle enough for the whole family to use as a moisturizer. 

Vanicream Moisturizing Cream 

Don’t be fooled by the unexciting branding or the fact that it isn’t marketed for babies, Vanicream is a great moisturizer for eczema and the whole family too.

It is very thick and really holds in moisture. It also avoids common irritants making it ideal for sensitive skin and doesn’t sting like some other creams.

It’s also more cost effective than most of the other options since it works as a moisturizer for the whole family. You can get it in a large tub with a pump making it easy to access while wrestling a wiggly baby too!

The only thing I don’t love about it is that it has a bit of a sticky feel to it, but that isn’t a deal breaker for me. 

For a lighter feel, the Vanicream Moisturizing Lotion is thinner and spreads more easily. I love it for daily moisturizing, but find the cream more helpful for very dry skin.

 

Goat Milk Body Lotion with Lavender Oil  

According to parents who love Goat Milk body lotion, the lavender oil scent is what knocks this one out of the park. First off, the lavender smells heavenly but it also adds extra moisturizing properties. 

Goat milk is naturally soothing as it’s packed with fatty acids, vitamins, potassium, zinc, and selenium. Add this one to your list of creamy lotions to have on hand during the winter months for extremely dry skin and eczema. 

Calendula

While Calendula makes a host of products, the one you want to look at for eczema is their topical first aid cream

Use it on everything from eczema to scrapes to chafing and even sunburns! Gentle enough for tiny babies but powerful enough to be very effective. 

Many have described this as a “soothing cream with a boost” as it’s over-the-counter but is as effective as many prescription ointments. 


Oils and Ointments

But sometimes those lotions and creams don’t cut and and you need something a little more oily and thick…

Organic Baby Face Balm by Earth Mama

This “organic alternative to petroleum jelly” is an absolute miracle for eczema around the mouth when you have to worry about it getting rubbed off or accidentally ingested.

This super rich coconut balm is the perfect mixture of ointment and lotion as it applies thick but absorbs in about three minutes. 

 

Cocoa Butter 

It’s no secret that cocoa butter is a great product for all skin types, including eczema-prone skin. 

For an extra boost, try it mixed with extra vitamin E oil and fresh aloe!  

There are a lot of cocoa butter brands out there, but our moms clearly voted Queen Helene as the absolute best for eczema. 

Waxelene Ointment

Waxelene is a great petroleum-free ointment that applies cleanly and is extremely effective. 

It’s full of natural ingredients such as soy oil, bee wax, vitamin E oil, and rosemary oil. Many moms report that it takes the red, inflamed look of eczema away with just one application! After two or three uses the dry patches are also a thing of the past. 

 

Aquaphor/Vaseline 

Aquaphor Healing Ointment and Vaseline Jelly Original are two similar petroleum based products that can be used to treat eczema by creating a barrier that holds in moisture.

Though they are similar, Vaseline Jelly Original contains 100% petroleum jelly and Aquaphor Healing Ointment contains several other chemicals as well. Both brands also carry other products with different compositions.

People may have preferences for one over the other, for instance, Aquaphor has additional moisturizing chemicals, whereas Vaseline has fewer potential irritants. 

Both have a very thick consistency that feels sticky, making them better for use at bedtime or when you can cover the area. Also, though they offer great moisturizing alone, they can be layered over top of another cream or lotion.

If budget is a concern, you can not beat Vaseline, it is hands down the least expensive moisturizer especially if you use store brands. Both though offer great value as they can be used for multiple purposes by the entire household.


Docor giving best eczema cream that is prescription

Prescription-Strength

But sometimes eczema flare-ups are just too bad and they require a prescription to get them fully under control. Here were the two most common (and effective!) prescriptions moms received from docs. 

Hydrocortisone Valerate 

Note that this cream is not the regular hydrocortisone you see in stores. It’s considered a medium-strength corticosteroid that is prescribed for inflammatory skin conditions (like eczema, dermatitis, etc) to reduce the swelling and redness that occurs. 

Tacrolimus Ointment 

Tacrolimus ointment is a non-steroid prescription option available for eczema. It works by suppressing inflammation by inhibiting the production of T-cells (that are required to activate the immune system). 


Natural and less common treatments for eczema

“Unconventional” Methods

These might not be technically developed or advertised for eczema treatment – but they’re still amazing and extremely effective.

Nipple Cream 

Just like how nipple cream provides soothing for your red, inflamed, and cracked nipples while breastfeeding – it can also be used on your child to treat their eczema. 

Best part is that since it’s safe to be ingested by infants, it’s a great option for eczema patches around mouths

Coconut Oil

Would it be 2021 if we didn’t mention coconut oil as a treatment for, well, everything? All jokes aside, lots of parents swear by this remedy for eczema. Viva Naturals makes a great coconut oil that doesn’t have that bitter coconut oil smell. 

For best results, apply coconut oil directly to damp skin after getting out of the bath. Immediately put on loose PJs so the oil doesn’t get everywhere while they are sleeping. 

 

Breast Milk

Yes, count ‘eczema treatment’ as another use for this liquid gold! 

Breast milk contains anti-infectious and anti-inflammatory properties which means it can also ease symptoms of mild to moderate eczema. Just apply breast milk directly to affected skin with a clean cotton ball. 

Apple Cider Vinegar 

Dab apple cider vinegar (raw and unfiltered is best!) onto damp skin with a clean cotton ball. Then, liberally apply white petroleum jelly to seal in the goodness.  

 

Manuka Honey + Witch Hazel

Parents were inspired by products such as “eczema honey” and decided to make their own, improved version. 

Mix up equal parts of manuka honey and witch hazel and apply to areas affected by eczema. 

You can also add a teeny tiny drop of tea tree oil as well for an extra punch. 


Child drying off after a bleach bath to help with eczema treatment

Lifestyle Modifications

Often eczema isn’t just a skin condition – it’s an outward symptom caused by an underlying cause. Try these lifestyle changes to get to the true root of the problem.

To Bathe Or Not To Bathe

There are two opposing trains of thought when it comes to bathing frequency and eczema.

One says don’t bathe too often because it further dries out the skin. The second actually says to bathe frequently and immediately apply moisturizer afterwards which is referred to as the “Soak and Seal” or “Soak and Smear” method of treatment.

To “soak and seal” it is recommended to just gently pat dry and then generously moisturize right away while still damp.

Whichever you choose, baths should be warm (not hot) and avoid harsh soaps and rough scrubbing.

Bleach Baths

First of all, check with your pediatrician before giving your baby a bleach bath. Also, only a very small amount of bleach is used, only half a cup for a filled full size bath tub is recommended. Since you most likely don’t bathe your baby in a full bath, you should specify with their doctor how to dilute the bleach to use for a smaller tub.

After the bath gently pat dry and immediately apply moisturizer.

Some people find a bleach bath helps their flare up as it kills bacteria which aggravate their eczema.

There are some drawbacks though as the bleach can sting very irritated skin and the fumes can be a trigger for allergies and asthma.

Pick The Right Clothing

Clothing can be an irritant for eczema so choosing soft and breathable fabrics can help. Natural materials like cotton and bamboo are often recommended since synthetic fibers trap sweat and don’t breathe. 

Make sure baby’s clothing fit well and loose, as tight clothes that rub can be a trigger. 

It’s important to dress baby appropriately for the temperature. Getting too warm and sweating can trigger and aggravate eczema.

Itchy tags and seams can also be problematic. You can cut out the tags and cover seams with cotton or silk. Some parents opt to turn the clothes inside out so the offending seams are on the outside.

Finally, wash new clothes before putting them on your baby. This removes any potential chemical irritants. Some people with eczema also use an extra rinse cycle when washing clothes to get more of the detergent residue washed away. Most newer washing machines have settings that make it super easy to add an extra rinse.

Avoid Irritants

Watch out for possible irritants that could be making your baby’s eczema worse. Identifying these triggers can help you to avoid them.

These may be obvious, but tons of everyday things can be irritants so it isn’t always easy to figure out. Some very common irritants include household products like soaps, shampoos, laundry detergents, and cleaning products as well as allergens like pollen and pet danders. 

Since it could be hard to pinpoint, consider switching out the products in your home to see if they are contributing to your baby’s eczema. Avoid fragrances as they are a common irritant.

Diet can also be contributing to your baby’s eczema from food allergies and sensitivities.

Irritants could also be as simple as changes in temperature or humidity or itchy clothing.

Not all irritants are avoidable, but it can still be helpful to know and be prepared.

Prevent Scratching

Unfortunately, you can’t explain to your baby that they shouldn’t scratch which will further irritate and damage the skin. However, you can try to minimize the harm done.

Keep baby’s nails trimmed short and file any sharp edges. Mittens can also help keep a determined baby from effectively scratching.

A cold compress on an itchy area can also help alleviate the desire to scratch.


That’s it! Now you’re an expert on the best treatments and eczema creams for children of all ages!

Which do you find most effective? Did we miss one? Let us know in the comments below!

The Holy Grail of Eczema Creams and Treatments

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About Author

Jo & Rachel

Jo and Rachel first had the idea for 'The Moms At Odds' in 2016 when our babies were turning 2 and we realized that we were very different parents.

As a mom, Rachel immediately felt this strong connection to her son and instantly decided she wanted to become a stay-at-home mom. Though Jo obviously loved her son as well, she counted the days until she could go back to work and interact with other adults.

They both struggled over getting their babies to sleep and while Jo believed in sleep training, Rachel looked for alternatives like dream feeding and no cry methods. As time passed and their children grew older the differences started to really add up – pacifier use, drinking during breastfeeding, organic foods, screen time, diaper brands, and on and on.

During this day and age, it’s so easy to look at our parenting differences as a bad thing. After all, we’ve all seen jokes and articles about “Mommy Wars” over one subject or another. Instead, we choose to embrace our differences and show you that in many areas there is no wrong answer. What works for one family may not work for another, and that’s perfectly fine. We can still all get along and raise perfectly healthy, beautiful children.

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