Skin Allergies: 5 Surprising Causes And How to Deal with Them
Wondering what’s causing your allergies? Find out if something in your home is triggering them.
Got a rash that seems to have come out of nowhere? You’re probably experiencing skin allergies. Rashes are just one of the many symptoms of an allergic reaction. Other symptoms include hives, itching, nasal congestion, a scratchy throat, and watery eyes.
According to the American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology (ACAAI), there are three common types of allergic reactions. Eczema or atopic dermatitis is triggered when the skin is dry, or by infections, heat, and sweating. It is characterized by dry, itchy patches that can get thick and scaly in severe cases. Hives, on the other hand, are raised, itchy bumps that appear reddish and turn white when pressed. They are usually triggered by exposure to an allergen or an infection. Lastly, contact dermatitis shows red, itchy bumps at the site of contact with an irritant.
Here are some surprising causes of skin allergies and how to deal with them.
Your Brand-New Top
Did you suddenly get a rash after wearing a new outfit? Dyes and chemicals used to treat the fabric may have triggered an allergic reaction. Whether it’s a top, a dress, or a pair of socks, wash brand new clothes with fragrance-free detergent before wearing them to avoid irritation. Certain fabrics that are rough on the skin, like wool, can also cause itching and rashes. If you’re prone to skin allergies, switch to cotton and other breathable fabrics.
Your Expensive New Perfume
We hate to break it to you, but if you are getting hives on your chin or chest area, it might be because of your new perfume. Fragrances are huge allergy triggers, and it’s not just the ones in perfume. Fragrance can be found in your skincare products, colognes, deodorants, and even household cleaning items. Even products that are labeled “unscented” can have chemicals that mask the odors of certain ingredients, so it’s better to choose a product that’s labeled fragrance-free.
Since harsh soaps can also trigger allergic reactions, use a gentle moisturizing bar to cleanse your skin. Try Dove Bar Sensitive Skin, which is a fragrance-free formula that won’t irritate your skin. It’s also made of ¼ moisturizing cream, so it replenishes your skin’s lost moisture and makes it more resistant to irritants.
Preservatives in Your Skincare Products
Skincare products are supposed to make your skin look better and healthier, but sometimes they contain ingredients that can cause allergies in some people. Formaldehyde releasers and parabens are preservatives that extend the shelf life of beauty products. These ingredients can be found in your shampoo and conditioner, sunscreens, moisturizers, makeup, and hair dyes.
Use mild skincare products that are formulated for sensitive skin, like Baby Dove Sensitive Moisture Lotion, which is hypoallergenic, non-comedogenic, and pH-neutral. It provides protection for very dry skin and delivers soothing comfort from tightness and itching.
Your Metal Jewelry
So, you’ve succeeded at layering your jewelry like your favorite influencer, but then you start itching and develop thick, painful bumps on your skin. Sounds like you have a nickel allergy, which can be triggered by metal accessories and hardware on your bags, belts, the frames on your eyeglasses, and even your phone! Try applying a coat of clear nail polish on jewelry to prevent the nickel from coming into contact with your skin, or stop wearing them altogether. As for your phone, try using a case so you don’t have to touch the metal.
That charming second-hand piece of furniture you scored from your ukay Facebook group might be making your skin itch. Non-washable upholstered furniture and carpets can house dust mites and mold spores that can cause skin allergies and even asthma. Before using your second-hand finds, make sure to have them deep cleaned by a professional. Do it outside your home in the open air to avoid bringing mold and dust into your home.
If you’re skin allergies become itchy and inflamed, the ACAAI strongly advises against scratching or even touching the area to avoid infection. Bathing with mild yet moisturizing soap will help relieve symptoms and ease discomfort. If your allergies persist, consult your doctor for the best treatment.