Toddler Eczema Update: Flip Over Cuffs

1 step forward, 3 steps back

TBH, It’s a pain in the butt having to apply lotion on my youngest as much as I do. Just how often you ask? Just today I’ve applied a 3 step regimen 3 times. It’s only 1:35PM. You know what’s a bigger pain in the butt? When you do all the “right” things and the Eczema is in the best case: the same, or in the worst case – cracked, bleeding, raw, and still itchy in the worst way. I guess if all these lotions, creams or ointments were solving the issue, all this stickiness would be worth while. (YES, I’ve tried natural remedies. Essential oils, diet change, getting rid of chemical detergents, etc etc and other holistic remedies) …. but rn, it’s not working.

UGH

In fact, even food triggers and allergens are a question mark. Example: We tried a piece of boiled egg one time and within 20-30 minutes Maverick broke out into hives on his chest, thighs and face. Since I only gave him 1 ingredient (egg) I was so sure this was the cause (because there’s egg in practically everything, right?) A week or two later my husband decided to try giving him a piece of fried egg and no reactions at all. So I tried another boiled egg a few days later and again no reaction! This isn’t the case for just eggs. It’s pretty much everything we own, everything Maverick touches, eats or is around. One day it’s the cause of a flare and another day it has zero effect on his eczema. Now we’re at a point where sometimes egg is ok, sometimes it’s not. Is our 18 mo starting to develop an immunity to things? Or it this life just playing with us?

I hate this game.

I’m frustrated, yes, and I’m tired asf. On bad days Maverick will wake up 2-3 times throughout the night screaming in pain, itching and tensely squirming his tired little body while I frantically spray water on him, change his diaper, and reapply ointments. This lack of sleep tends to leave me to be a shell of a woman the next day while his temper tantrums are at level 150 ALL DAY. It’s witching hour in my house 24/7 lately!

But I remain focused

I force myself to snap out of my funk because

1) I can’t be having a more difficult time than the actual person who has Eczema, right?

and

2) I have 2 other humans and a dog that rely on me to function. This might possibly be that “mom strength” that people talk about….Or it could just my level of caffeine intake. Whatever it is, Thank God for it.

Eczema Flares

When Maverick is going through an Eczema flare it starts off on his chest. I’ll see him tugging at his shirt around the neckline. This single sign is a guarantee that’ll I won’t be sleeping well that night. He rubs his face and eyes, a lot like when he’s tired. Light red patches will pop up around his eyes, chest, sides, shoulders, forearms and thighs. This quickly intensifies and wakes up his “trouble spots”. ( I don’t know the actual term for this, that’s just what I call them). These spots are thick and dry patches that never really go away. For Maverick these are behind the neck, on the elbows, hands, knees, and the worst spot: his ankles and tops of his feet.

Yup. This is what I see on a lot of days. It’s not an infection, it’s just a whole lot of scratching at his ankles and feet overnight. Yes, I use medication (topical steroids) but only on days like this where I know his skin won’t be able to handle anymore. In between I use lots of lotion, ointments, essential oils, diet changes, The skin needs some time to heal. I know a lot of moms and people out there who are judging me because I end up using steroids on my toddler, but you do you, and I’ll do me. We’re all in this together.

Cover it up

It doesn’t matter if my 18mo is going through a flare or has pristine skin that day, he needs to stay covered up. Long footed onesies are our current go-to outfit.

The moment I open his onesie to change a diaper, he’s back at it again! Scratching… more like clawing as his ankles and thighs. Yes, I’ve tried socks… all kinds of lengths and materials. He always pulls them off and goes back to scratching.

We don’t wear shoes in our house

This makes it difficult to have Maverick dressed in a footed PJs all day. As a walking (running and climbing) toddler he wants to walk himself outside to the car, at the park, at the supermarket, etc… Every time I need to get out of the house I have to change his outfit: from footed PJs to socks/pants/shirt. With this outfit change, he inevitably he pulls off his shoes and socks in the car or stroller and goes back to scratching away at his ankles and feet like a maniac. When we get back home from our outing, Maverick is left with raw ankles and feet so I change him back into his footed PJs with some lotion or ointment.

My Solution? Flip-Over Cuff Pants

Flip over cuffs are not a new idea what-so-ever. You’ll see it most often on baby onesies, but with gloves. My thought process: At home I’ll have the foot cuff covering his feet and I can just flip them open when we go out. Hopefully, he won’t be able to pull up his cuff pants (even when they are open) to scratch himself.

I decided this was a decent alternative to changing outfits 2-3 times a day and started my google search:

“flip over cuff pants”

“Eczema clothing cuffed pants”

“flip cuff baby pants”

“flip over foot cuff”

Nothing. It didn’t exsist.

Typically, a 2 year old doesn’t need covered hands or feet so I guess this was to be expected. Well… I did find a few options for sizes Newborn – 9 month. This wasn’t much help as Maverick is already 18 months old and is wearing 24 month sized clothing.

  • Fun Fact I found while searching: Did you know Aloe and moisturizer infused Eczema clothing exists? If you can afford 65$ for just the top and another 70$ for the bottoms of what looks like a 2 set PJ, by all means try it out.

F*K it, I’m just gonna make them myself.

I started searching for fold over cuff tutorials online and bumped into this one from Things For Boys. (Thank you for your post!)

Absolutely. Brilliant. This was it! Something simple, something that would work for the time being. Only problem: I can’t sew.

This left me to do the most obvious thing I could do – I called my mom who just happens to be a professional tailor on the other side of the country. I sent her photos of what I wanted, a yard of fabric from Walmart, and 7 pairs of toddler pants from Amazon.

Here’s the result

My mom is amazing. Here’s a video of the unboxing and a closer look at the pants.

  • She was able to make cuffs for 6 pairs of pants with the 1 yard of fabric.
  • She even pleated little ‘corners’ so Maverick’s heel would fit right in.
  • They work. Maverick is not scratching his ankles while they are covered which buys us a little time to heal the skin.
  • Another reason they work: At home we have his feet covered. When we go out I just flip the cuffs open and put on socks and shoes. I don’t know why but he doesn’t seem to try and scratch his ankles in the car anymore. Maybe his mind tricks him into thinking he still has a footed PJ on? Who cares, it’s working for now.
  • They’re a bit long. We have 1 pair that is shorter than the rest and that’s the 1 I’m using now. The rest of them are long enough to fit my 3 yo so… We’ll have to wait. I feel like my mom did this on purpose so we would be able to use the pants longer? I can’t complain, she spent her free time doing this for me.
Ok. So they’re A LOT long… My 3 year old can fit in the biggest one and she wears 5/6T.
  • My mom left the original cuff on the pants. Visually, they look nice but the pants feel a little too tight when the cuffs are open. (Too much fabric around the ankles).
  • They might get slippery. Usually, footed PJs have that rubbery fabric on the bottom for some traction but we don’t have that. Maverick hasn’t had an accident yet but I feel like I’ll have to add something soon.

It’s a work-in-progress

We definitely have a few things to tweak but I feel like we’re on the right track. Our end result is in no way perfect or complete but I hope this post can reach someone and it can spark an idea for you. Stay strong Eczema fam! Sending you guys much love and strength.

Maverick and his cute little chubby toddler feet

Disclosure: Yes, I have ads in my blog post! This is because if you click on the ads and buy something from Amazon using my link, I’ll get a small commission with absolutely no extra cost to you. This is just so I can continue to blog. Let’s be real here, blogging can cost money. Thanks in advance for any and all support. Much peace and love.

Eczema mom here, Here’s my experience with Eczema Honey Co.

I didn’t expect Eczema

You expect the sleepless nights, the teething, colds and fevers, baby proofing the house etc… but little expect eczema. I sure didn’t. It’s a day to day struggle just to keep my baby’s skin hydrated and I’m SO glad I have the opportunity to collab with Eczema Honey Co and share their product with you.

Eczema Honey NUT FREE

Ok, ok. I know you’re probably rolling your eyes right about now thinking “Another collab? I wonder how much she got paid to post about this product.” If you’d like to give me just a moment to explain my story please read on.

I’ve probably dropped a good $1000+ on lotions at Target and Walmart. I’ve spent even more on doctors and treatment regimens. I regularly search on Google and Amazon day in and out for new eczema related products. I’ll spend every last penny I have if it means my baby wouldn’t have to suffer anymore. If you’re still reading you’re probably in the same or similar shoes.

If you’re like me and have a child with Eczema (Atopic Dermatitis) you’ve probably seen the ads on your Facebook or Instagram feed for a product called Eczema Honey. I was seeing tons of positive comments, reviews,  and posts online. Like anyone else who’s been disappointed over and over again with lotions and creams that just don’t work, I shook my head, saw this as another ‘too good to be true’ product, and scrolled up.


 

Then a surprise

Someone I actually knew purchased Eczema Honey and told me about their results: Clear skin in 14 days. Healed her baby’s red and chapped skin from the inside out. From that moment on I was eyeing this product and started researching what could be making it so effective.  What kept me from purchasing right away? Fear of being let down and being $30 poorer.

A couple months after that Eczema Honey Co reached out to me for a collab and words couldn’t even describe how excited I was for this! I received my package just a day or two before leaving for NJ just 2 weeks ago.

Here’s a look at my Eczema Honey Co. package when I received it

Well packaged, clean and modern. The items I received were the Nut Free Eczema Honey Healing Creams. Maverick isn’t allergic to nuts as far as I can tell but it’s good to know this product is produced at a completely separate facility than the Original Healing Cream which contains nuts.

Application of Eczema Honey

On the directions there are 2 ways to apply Eczema Honey onto the skin.

  1. Rub a dime sized amount on the effected area 1-3 times a day.
  2. Apply a thicker layer for a 20 minute mask. Wash off with a warm towelette for a moisturized finish.

I went with method 1 just because I wasn’t sure how I was going to apply a mask on a 8 month old without getting it everywhere.

Texture and feel of Eczema Honey

When you first open your jar you’ll see it looks more like a light ointment than a cream. After I applied Eczema Honey onto Mavericks face my hands felt sticky… tacky? Something of that sort. It is explained as so in the directions that came with my jars:

“This is the natural lipd bi-layer that is created once the cream soaks in. This layer acts as a protecting barrier and ensures the healing process.”

The first ingredient is Organic Pure Honey and it also contains Organic Grated Beeswax so the texture and feel were definitely expected, but did I like it? No, I don’t like the feeling of this product on my hands for too long so I wash them  after applying it on baby Maverick.  It’s possible that you’ll be able to ignore the tacky feeling if the Eczema Honey was applied to a different area like the face. I haven’t tried it.

But does it work?

Yes and no.

No, because Eczema Honey Does Not Cure Eczema, Nor do they claim it does.

But YES, it definitely has a way of locking in moisture and helping the healing process

For us, Eczema Honey has been more effective than the following products:

Of course, everyone’s skin is different and what didn’t work for us can definitely work for you! Read the reviews on Amazon and other sites and make a balanced decision about your purchase.

You can save 15% off every jar when you subscribe to Eczema Honey Co.

This is great because you’ll never run out of Eczema Honey and you’ll receive your discount. You can choose to receive your product once a month or once every 2 months.

Get Started By Clicking Here

Applying Eczema Honey (and other products) on Maverick

Ok, so let me get into how I’ve been applying products on Maverick lately. Before I do this let me go over our situation.

Maverick is currently 8.5 months old. His eczema is concentrated on the following areas:

  • Cheeks
  • Inside and around his ears
  • Sides of his head
  • Upper torso
  • Back of his neck
  • Inside the folds of his arms and legs
  • His wrists and hands
  • Ankles and top of feet

He suffers from flares that start off as red skin that looks like he was slapped. This quickly escalates to a weepy wet looking rash that is inflamed and hot to the touch. Once the flare can calm down a bit he has patches of dry flaky skin left where his flares were concentrated. He has a sensitivity or allergy (not sure yet) to eggs.

NOTE: I must add that I am not a doctor! You need to check in with your doctor before trying anything you find online. Period.

Here are my current steps to calm down Maverick’s Eczema flares:

1. Keep cool. When Maverick Is having a flare his skin is red, inflamed and hot to the touch. I use a wet paper towel or spray bottle of water on the skin to help cool down the flare. And YES, IT DOES MATTER WHAT KIND OF WATER YOU USE! I’ll get into more details on this soon! It’s way too much info to squeeze into this post. Stay Tuned!

2. Hydrate and lock in the moisture the best you can. Once the skin is wet (or straight out of the bath too!) lightly pat dry and use a lighter lotion or something of the sort that will seep into the skin quickly. Currently using (Eczema Honey) This alone doesn’t work as effectively… we need to use a thicker emollient on top to trap the moisture onto the skin. Our doctor suggested Vaseline but there are tons of options out there that aren’t as sticky and won’t stain your clothes. I have been using Vanicream for this step and love it!

3. Be diligent. It’s hard work to keep up with your baby’s skin drying out. When your baby has a clear day that’s when you need to focus even more on hydrating and try to extend the amount of time between each flare. I will do the above steps 2-3 times a day. In between I will use some Vanicream if I notice the skin looking dry.

Let me add (confess to) this too:

When Maverick’s flares get too crazy, like a lot crazier than usual, I’ll use the steroid ointment he was prescribed.  (please no mom shaming!) We will usually have to resort to this every 10-14 days. I just can’t watch my baby scratch and scrape layers of skin off just because ‘I need him to heal naturally’. Personally, I believe that the healing process can be amplified if you focus on first STOPPING THE SCRATCHING and taking care of the skin even more on the ‘clear’ days rather than slathering on a bunch of stuff when you’re in the middle of a flare.

That’s just me and my opinion tho.

When it comes to eczema each child is different and what works on my 2nd won’t work on my 3rd. Both of my eczema baby’s react differently to certain foods and even lotions so your situation may not align perfectly with mine. I hope if you’re in need of some advice,  and just plain and simple opinions and info you’ll be leaving my page with just that.  When it comes to Eczema, I truly feel like the more knowledge you have of your product options the better choices you can make for you and your little one.

Eczema Honey Co provides a product that helps to heal and protect the skin  naturally. Although this is a collab, this is an actual product I am using on my kids daily and love. Check out their IG @eczemahoneyco and sign up for emails on their site for promotions ❤️

YES, I do need to make a living. This is why I have links and ads in my posts. If you do decide to purchase anything using my links I will get a small commission for each sale at absolutely no extra cost to you. This will provide me with the ability to continue blogging and doing what I love! Thanks in advance and have a wonderful day!

3 Natural Things That Calmed Down My Baby’s Eczema Flare (Plus Thoughts On Topical Steroids)

Our journey with baby Eczema has been a long one as I am still going through the struggle.

Actual eczema photos ahead, you’ve been warned.

My second child had severe baby Eczema that affected her entire face and scalp, inside and outside of her ears, behind her ears, chest, and belly. It was devastating. As a breastfeeding mom I felt like a total failure… I thought maybe she has developed an allergy to something I’ve eaten recently or maybe even from when I was pregnant. Before I was able to figure out how to calm down her eczema flares I was waking up every 20-30 minutes for the first 3 months that my dear daughter was home.

Baby Melanie’s skin at 8 weeks was red and swollen from Eczema.

It was either hot to the touch and inflamed with a glossy “wet” look OR not so red, super dry with flaky patches of that seemed to be “thick”… Kind of like a callus. Either way she was super itchy and didn’t sleep. She was constantly frustrated, cranky, exhausted and in pain.


I’ve seen the scary baby eczema photos online; the horrors of prescription steroid creams and ointments. I’ve read hundreds of articles (and UGH the photos) talking about the effects they have on the skin after long term use. A baby’s skin can potentially get addicted to steroids. If not careful, you can even develop something called Red Skin Syndrome aka Topical Steroid Withdrawal (TSW). This means if you stop using the steroids that are weakening the skin, you’ll have a flare 10x worse than the actual Eczema.

Talk about a rock and a hard place.

I avoided using the prescription steroids our pediatrician gave us at all costs and went straight into a more… not so freaking scary approach (by the way, you don’t have to feel guilty about using steroids for baby eczema. i’ll get more into this later in the post).

In short I’ve used lotions, plants and foods, essential oils, ointments, hydro cortisone 1% in like 4 different brands, etc. Nothing worked. I’ll add a full list of all the products I’ve used during this process another time. There are so many that this list deserves its own post.

If you’re still reading, you’re probably going through something similar and you’re looking for some miracle answer that will heal you or your baby from eczema. Sorry to say, there is no cure.

“If there is one thing to be learned from Eczema it is that every child needs custom care.”

Not all children heal the same but there are a few things that a lot of the other moms I’ve talked to agree on.

Here are the top 3 natural things that helped Melanie during her flares:

  1. Frequent Baths, lotion afterwards: For quite some time it was thought that bathing frequently was not a good option for people with eczema. But, a recent study shows that frequent baths help when you apply massive amounts of lotion or emollient afterwards. Lotions seep into the skin better after a warm bath or shower; it’s a tried and true proven fact. We use Vanicream and still have the 1 lb. tub in every corner of our house to this day.
  2. Wearing Cotton, avoid synthetic fabrics: Stick to breathable cotton maybe even organic. Polyester knit fabrics look and feel like cotton but the breath-ability is definitely different. Luckily, most infant onesies are 100% cotton but if you have a few items that are not; put them away.
  3. Go Swimming: I’ve noticed a dramatic decrease in eczema flares when we’ve been playing in the water all day. I’m still not sure if it’s just being in the water for a long time or the chlorine (because bleach baths are a thing in the Eczema world – look it up) but after a long day of swimming and plenty of lotion afterwards Melanie’s eczema would disappear for up to a few days. Making a bleach bath at home was not nearly as effective as going to a pool. We’ve also traveled near and far to natural mineral water resorts and hotels (super stinky water that smells like eggs) and this helped as well. We didn’t smell great, but Melanie was definitely less itchy.

We were always out swimming because it seemed to help Melanie with her eczema

Here is a list of things that didn’t really make a difference for us but there are tons of people who swear by these.

If you’d like more info go ahead and just Google any of it or ask in the comments:
  • Changing our detergent
  • Putting breast milk on the affected area
  • Cleaning the house and getting rid of dust, pet dander and other allergens (which means my child’s Eczema was most likely due to an internal issue not from touching something)
  • Changing moms diet if breastfeeding
  • Changing baby formula to something hypoallergenic (this is really expensive btw, but if your doctor recommends it there could be government programs that will pay for your formula, more on that another day.)
  • Bleach baths
  • Getting a some sun
  • Going to the beach (sun + salt water)
  • Wet wrapping – Melanie’s eczema was mostly on her face so this method was a little difficult for us but I can definitely see it working.
  • About a thousand dollars’ worth of lotions and oils

Here is the last thing that really, TRULY helped me (warning, it’s not natural):

The best way to get rid of Eczema for a longer period of time is (drum roll) USE THE TOPICAL STEROIDS THE DOCTOR GAVE YOU.  That’s right! That’s it. If Hydrocortisone 1% works for you stick with that, but if you need a stronger ointment and your pediatrician gives you that prescription, freaking use it! I’ve spent countless hours worrying and feeling guilty about using a prescription strength steroid on my baby but if you’re at the point where nothing is working, this bit of advice can save you!

This is the steroid ointment that was prescribed to Melanie for her Eczema. It’s been more than a year and I haven’t used half of it yet.

By the time Melanie was 4 months I wanted to give up. She was suffering so much, I was SO F’n tired and I was desperate. I’ve tried so hard, spent so much money, read a thousand blogs from all over the world for answers with no relief for my baby. Nothing I was doing was working and so one day I dabbed a little bit of PRESCRIPTION STEROID OINTMENT FROM THE OUR PEDIATRICIAN on one side of Melanie’s cheek. Within a few hours she had clear skin. It was still a little dry but regular lotion seemed to help with that.

Now, I know you might be a little disappointed at my answer here but note this:

I didn’t go overboard with the prescription, I used as little as possible. I’m talking I-barely-put-any-on type of amount. I just want you to know that if you’ve come to the point where nothing else works, you’re not alone and you don’t have to feel guilty! You are doing the best you can for your baby. Even if it means you’re not going the 100% organic +  natural route, you’re doing the best you can. You’re working your hardest. Your baby deserves relief and so do you. That being said, there IS such thing as red skin syndrome and steroid withdrawals so please PLEASE be cautious, ask your pediatrician what is the best for you and your baby.  I am just a regular mom and in no way a professional in this matter. I’m only sharing what has been working for me and my kids.

Eczema is a never ending journey…

Since then, my daughter is now turning 2 next month and we regularly use Vanicream (multiple times a day and definitely after ever bath). Vanicream seems to be the only lotion that wasn’t drying out after a few hours. Since last year Melanie’s Eczema has changed. Her flares are not anywhere near as bad as they were a year ago. The location of her Eczema patches have moved to her ankles and arms from mostly on her face and chest. Her flares RARELY get to the point where I have to use steroids. She didn’t develop any steroid withdrawals and on 90% of her days she looks like she has clear skin but does itch if I forget to put on lotion multiple times a day.

My third child is now 2 months old and has eczema flares very similar to what Melanie had a year ago. In closing, I want you to know that I know how difficult this journey is. You’re not alone, things do get better and hang in there! You can do this! As a parent we are given the endurance and strength to take on all sorts of battles for our children.

This photo was taken within the past month. She has clear skin mostly everywhere, just a small patch on her ankle and arm that you can barely see. We only use Vanicream at the moment and it’s been months since we had to use a topical steroid.

If any of the above information was useful and you are interested in purchasing Vanicream please use my Amazon links provided below! By doing this I am able to receive a small commission at absolutely no extra cost to you and I will be able to continue blogging and doing what I love to do! I am not associated to any companies and am reviewing a product that I actually own and love. Thank you in advance and have blessed day!

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