Moisturising Creams

This section will look at:

  • What are moisturising creams and how do they help?
  • Are moisturising creams safe?
  • Answers to common concerns about moisturising creams
  • When and how to use moisturising creams
  • Finding the right moisturising cream for your child
  • Taking part in our ‘2 week challenge’

Even if you have read a lot about eczema already, we really encourage you to have a look and see for yourself – some of the tips and information might surprise you.

Bitmap (1)

Top tip!

This section starts off with the basics but covers much more than that. So don’t get put off by the first few sections if you have been treating your child’s eczema for a while!

Keep control of eczema 123

Watch this video to find out about how to use moisturisers to keep control of eczema.

Click here to read a text version of the video

Moisturising creams

Moisturising creams (sometimes called emollients) are suitable to use from birth.  Moisturisers are an imporatnt part of eczema care and assist to lock in moisture in the skin barrier.

What are they and are they safe?

Why use moisturising creams?

Moisturising creams form a barrier over the skin to protect the skin and keep control of eczema. Click on the buttons below to find out more:

Using moisturising creams every day

Using moisturising creams every day is the best way of protecting your child’s skin and preventing flare-ups in the future.

Moisturising creams help the skin, even when you can’t see any eczema. They help keep your child’s skin smooth and supple so it can cope with everyday things that might cause a flare-up.

I just put it on a couple of times a day and I've noticed her skin looks a lot better and she doesn't get any bad flare-ups.


Common concerns

Click on the boxes below to find out the answers to some common concerns about moisturising creams.

When do I need to use moisturising creams?

Every day! Using them even when your child’s skin is clear will help your child get less flare-ups in the future. Remember to keep using them even when you have a flare-up.

Children with drier skin or more severe eczema may need to use moisturising creams more often. In general the drier your child’s skin the more often you should use a moisturising cream. Moisturising creams cannot be overused.

Top tip!

If your child is having a flare-up, then you will also need to use flare control creams, as well as moisturising creams, to get control of the eczema.

I always make sure I have plenty of moisturising creams in the house, so I never run out.


Moisturising cream tips

Find a time to use them that works for you. This could be:

  • After your child has a bath or shower, or after washing their hands if they have hand eczema. Babies may also need cream after every nappy change.
  • Before your child comes into contact with anything that may make eczema worse. This may be things like cold weather, pollen in a grassy field or wet or dusty activities.
  • For babies, it is a good idea to put moisturising cream on their hands, cheeks, and around their mouth before meal times to stop them getting sore from food or their saliva.

When she’s really itchy, she finds moisturising creams soothing. Putting them in the fridge makes them nice and cool which also really helps.
Sometimes I find putting the moisturiser container in a bowl of hot water or warming my hands before applying the moistuiser can be nice for my child.


What is the best way to put on moisturising creams?

What if moisturisers are not working for my child?

Some families don’t like using moisturising creams because they’ve used them in the past and didn’t see any change in their child’s skin. Click on the boxes below to find out more about why you might not be noticing a difference:

Finding the right moisturising cream for you

There is a huge choice of moisturising creams available in Australia. There is no evidence that one type of moisturising cream is better for eczema than another. The key is finding one that works for you and using lots of it every day.

Top tip!

Your child’s skin might change as they grow up or depending on the time of year. So think about changing moisturising creams if the one you are using isn’t helping anymore.

It felt like forever to find a moisturising cream that worked for us. One we tried felt horrible on her skin. Another didn't seem to do anything. The one we use now really helps her eczema and feels cooling on her skin.


Different types of moisturising creams

You can discuss different moisturising creams with your pharmacist, doctor, or nurse. You can also buy moisturising creams from the pharmacist without a prescription from a doctor.

The four main types of moisturisers are: lotions, creams, gels and ointments. All types work to treat eczema but how they feel, or how quickly they sink in, can affect how well we use them.

Common questions about types of moisturising creams:

I use an ointment on his face because it’s so dry, but put the cream on everywhere else because it’s quicker.


2 week challenge

The 2 week challenge is a way you can test how well moisturising creams work by choosing a moisturising cream and using it every day for 2 weeks to see how much difference it makes to your child's skin. This can also help you find a cream that works for your child. It’s simple – you just need to use your child's moisturising creams every day! There will be a chart that you can you use to record when you use moisturising creams and how your child's eczema is. You can also set up reminders if you like.

Start the 2 week challenge now


The golden rules of moisturising creams

To Keep Control

Moisturising creams (emollients)

Skin 02

What are they for?

These creams are used to keep control of eczema. They help to:

  • Stop eczema flare-ups by keeping out things that may irritate the skin
  • Make the skin soft by locking water in the skin
  • Stop itching

Most people with eczema will need to use moisturising creams every day.

Skin 02


Usually they need to be used at least once a day. The drier your child’s skin is, the more often you should use a moisturising cream.

Skin 02

How often?

Apply a generous layer once a day. The drier your child’s skin is, the more often you should use a moisturising cream.

Skin 02

How much to apply?

Put on a thick layer. Moisturising creams cannot be overused.

Skin 02

How long for?

Always. Use moisturising creams even when your child’s skin is clear will prevent flare-ups in the future.

Skin 02

Are they safe?

Yes. Moisturising creams are very safe. They are used by millions of people with eczema across the world. Sometimes people find they irritate or sting. You may need to find one that works for your child.