person pointing to a rash on arm

How to Deal with a Contact Dermatitis Allergy

If you’re noticing a red, itchy rash appearing on your skin after direct contact with a substance, it could be the result of a contact dermatitis allergy. Contact dermatitis is a type of eczema that’s triggered by an allergen which most people likely find harmless. While the rash isn’t dangerous or contagious, it can definitely be uncomfortable. Let’s take a closer look at how to prevent and treat symptoms of contact dermatitis.

Please keep in mind that although what we discuss in this post can relieve eczema, we are in no way medical professionals. If you’re experiencing severe eczema symptoms like an infection, it is best to seek medical advice immediately.

What Causes Allergic Contact Dermatitis?

Contact dermatitis is caused by an allergic reaction to a substance outside the body. When your skin comes into contact with the allergen, an immune reaction is triggered. Typically, an allergic reaction occurs within 48–72 hours after exposure to the allergen.

Common irritants are typically household products that you may contact with on a daily basis such as:

  • Soaps
  • Cosmetics
  • Fragrances
  • Nickel which is often found in jewelry and belt buckles
  • Personal care products such as deodorants, body wash, nail polish
  • Pollen
  • Animal dander
  • Dust mites
  • Plants.

Symptoms of Contact Dermatitis

Symptoms of contact dermatitis usually develop in the area of your body that has directly come into contact with the allergen. You may notice a red rash that feels tender to the touch. There may also be a burning sensation or swelling.

In more severe cases, bumps or blisters may develop that ooze or crust. In addition, contact dermatitis is usually itchy and the skin may be dry, cracked, or scaly.

How to Treat a Contact Dermatitis Allergy

The best way to prevent a contact dermatitis allergy is to avoid contact with the irritant that is causing the reaction. If it’s not possible to avoid the allergen completely, you definitely want to take steps to reduce contact as much as possible.

Fortunately, contact dermatitis usually improves or goes away on its own as time goes by. However, because the condition can be uncomfortable, there are some things you can do to manage and soothe symptoms.

A great way to keep the skin hydrated is by frequently applying a natural moisturizer. This not only helps restore the skin’s outermost layer, it also helps protect it from allergens.

Hydrated skin also helps combat itchiness. We recommend a natural moisturizer such as this oil-based balm: Organic Manuka Skin Soothing Cream. It’s made with just 6 ingredients, making it the perfect choice for those with sensitive skin. Even babies can safely and effectively use this cream. Feel free to apply it to delicate areas like eyelids and lips too.

Another option is this Grass Fed Tallow Balm. Tallow is actually one of the world’s purest forms of skincare. It’s a gentle choice for those with sensitive skin, allergy prone skin, and eczema. Moisturizing and nourishing, it helps soothe itchy skin naturally.

To avoid further irritating your already sensitive skin and to protect your skin from harmful scratching, you also want to wear protective clothing.

To protect skin on the chest, arms, and stomach, check out these Remedywear™Long Sleeve Shirts for adults and kids. For legs, thighs, and buttocks, we recommend these pants for adults and kids. The hypoallergenic material is made with TENCEL and embedded with anti-inflammatory zinc oxide to soothe the skin and boost the healing process.

If you’re having trouble preventing scratching, you may benefit from these Adult Scratch Sleeves with Anti Scratch Mitts. They’re made with closed natural silk mitts that cover the hands to protect the skin from vigorous scratching.

For little ones, try these ScratchSleeves with Scratch Mittens.



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.