Many people suffer from dry, irritated skin and have usually tried many approaches such as a variety of moisturisers and avoiding harsh soaps and body washes. However there are other simple and often little-known approaches that can be easily be applied at home to help ease irritation and itching:

  • Oat bath – hang a muslin-type bag of rolled porridge oats over the bath taps and let the bath water run through it, releasing the oat milk to soothe the skin. Recent research suggests that certain compounds in oats may have an antihistamine effect (Meydani, 2009)
  • Chickweed and peppermint cream – this is great for stopping itching and cooling hot, dry skin
  • Diet – dry skin may be due to poor diet that does not include sufficient nutrients such as omega-3 essential fatty acids (found in fish oils and flaxseed), vitamin A and zinc.

Be aware, however, that itchy skin symptoms may be indicative of a more serious underlying condition such as diabetes, hypothyroidism or certain medication such as diuretics; remedies that simply ease symptoms should not be used to replace more effective treatment.


Meydani M.(2009) Potential health benefits of avenanthramides of oats. Nutr Rev. 67(12):731-5.