How does colloidal oatmeal help treat eczema: the research behind it– Itchy Baby Co.

How does colloidal oatmeal help treat eczema: the research behind it

  • by Petra Jelinkova

Oatmeal has been used for hundreds of years to soothe itchy and irritated skin. The number one main ingredient in itchy baby bath soaks is colloidal oatmeal and is made by finely grinding down oatmeal.

How does colloidal oatmeal help itchy and irritated skin conditions such as eczema?

The reasons are many and all are to do with oatmeal’s chemical structure.

  1. Oatmeal can hold water and protect the skin because it is packed full of starches and beta-glucans.
  2. Oatmeal has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activity through its many types of phenols.
  3. Oatmeal also cleanses due to its saponins.
  4. Oatmeal softens the skin because it has lots of cellulose and fibre.

With all these useful properties colloidal oatmeal has been used to treat many conditions including eczema, chicken pox, insect bites and skin irritations.


The Journal of Drugs and Dermatology has published in more detail the reasons why colloidal oatmeal works for itchy and irritated skin. In their article, Colloidal oatmeal: history, chemistry and clinical properties, they talk about studies where colloidal oatmeal has been used in the treatment of eczema. Here are few of the results:

  • In a study where 139 patients used a colloidal oatmeal bath for three months more than 71% reported a complete or dramatic reduction in itching.
  • A study of 152 children with dermatitis found that bathing in colloidal oatmeal eased the irritation and itching of eczema.
  • Very recent studies have confirmed colloidal oatmeal forms a protective, moisturising barrier on the skin.
  • A study of 25 patients with dermatitis had a colloidal oatmeal bath every day for seven days with a 67% improvement in itching.

Of course we would love to see much larger studies being done on the benefits and effectiveness of colloidal oatmeal but you don’t need to look very hard to find evidence that it can help manage eczema which is why we created itchy baby co. bath soaks.

This post was brought to you and your baby with love by Julia and the Itchy Baby Co. team. X

Disclaimer: Information provided is of a general nature only, and you should always consult your medical professional.

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