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Cosmetics

Facial eczema

I've had eczema since I can remember and I'm now 29 years old and still dealing with it. It affected mainly the insides of elbows, behind my knees, and neck area for the most part of my childhood and pre-teen years. From about 16-20 it miraculously seemed to go away with only minor flare-ups in the winter. I also dealt with impetigo as a child which was horrible and I too still have outbreaks of cold sores from time to time. I thought the eczema battle was a thing of the past until the last month of my pregnancy for my daughter at age 21. It re-appeared as a small patch on the top of my hand and after her birth it exploded to cover my whole body. It was agonising for over 2 yrs and after many steroid creams, bathing agents (including doak oil), light (UV) treatment and eventually being put on Prednisolone causing me to gain 25lbs in a 2 week period. I had enough and stopped taking anything they gave me. I noticed over time that it began to subside and almost go away. I was told the flare-up was due to hormone levels fluctuating drastically from the pregnancy so when I became pregnant at 26 for our second child I was worried about it coming back again or maybe even worse than the last. I'm glad to say it didn't, but it still is a problem for me. Although it's exceptionally better, and most of it has left my body, it has settled in my face and neck and I can feel it in my scalp. Putting make-up on for work every morning is hell and I know I'm probably irritating it with make-up but it's the only thing that helps me look eczema free to the rest of the of the world. If anyone has any suggestions for anything that will help relieve my face from this, please let me know.

Carla, Strathroy, Canada

Make up tips

I've always had facial eczema, and it can get pretty bad sometimes. To reduce the redness, I use the foundation (liquid-powder) from "Clinique", which I found to be the best. Not only does it reduce the redness and scars, but it also moisturizes your skin as well. Plus, most of their stuff is allergy-test, so I would recommend it to any of you who have the same problem. Maybe a bit pricey, but it's totally worth it. When my skin isn't too flaky, I finish it off with "Ultimate finish" from cover-girl which is quite affordable and works pretty well, to give my face a whiter-smoother look. Thought I should share this. When trying on make-up, try to look if its "derma-tested" or "allergy-tested", or anything for sensitive skin.

Sue, Winnipeg, Canada

Powder based make-up

I am 17 and have suffered from facial eczema since I was about 4. It ranges from being red, crusty, weeping and bleeding all over my face, to just concentrated around the eyes and upper lip to almost invisible (on VERY good and rare days!). However, even with my ridiculous amount of allergies and irritations to ... everything it seems, Lilly Lolo make up range works well for me. I actually hate wearing make-up ... it just feels horrible to me but if I ever go out with my friends it's really great to just be able to wear a bit of bright green eye shadow for fun! Unfortunately their products are all powders but I think you can mix them with water and use them pretty much everywhere ... good colour range too and I have to say very cheap, even for me lol. Good luck everyone.

Joanna, London, UK

My make-up tips

As a girl of 15 years living with eczema, I find it hard to find make-up that doesn't emphasise my dry and scaly facial skin. I use every bit of make-up there is! Mascara, eyeliner, foundation, blusher, concealer! If it is at all possible, I WOULD NOT recommend anyone with eczema using make-up products on their face, but if you're like me, here are some brands I have found most useful.....Before I apply my makeup i put on E45 (which is amazing) all over my face and let it dry for about 10 minutes.Foundations: my favourite foundation is Rimmel London Stay Matte Liquid - I find it doesn't sink into my skin and make my face appear dryer. I also use Maybelline Dream Matte Mousse.Eyeliners: the best eyeliners I find are Barry M Liquid Liner and Collection 2000 Black Liquid Eyeliner. These are the only ones that I find do not irritate and sting my eyes. I hope this has been useful!

Kimberley, Llandrindod Wells, UK