Skin problems can be annoying and difficult to get rid of. And among all skin conditions, itching is the most common!
Itchy skin is also known as pruritus and is characterized by an irritating sensation on your skin (1). You may get an uncontrollable urge to scratch the area to relieve the skin irritation.
However, scratching is not a very reliable solution, as it provides only temporary relief. You should use a solution that will relieve itchy skin permanently. And home remedies are the most natural and safest ways to do that.
But what are some effective home remedies to soothe itchy skin? There are several remedies that you can use, and this article has described some of the most common ones.
So, let’s get straight into it, shall we?
Causes Of Itching Skin
Itching is typically caused due to dry skin and it can be either localized to a specific area or spread out throughout the body. It can also be caused as a result of some insect bite, which is typically contained in a small area.
Other than that, itchy skin may be a result of skin diseases, such as eczema, psoriasis, dermatitis, or any other similar problem (2). You might experience irritation due to health conditions as well, such as allergies, chickenpox, shingles, or measles. However, a persistent itch may be an indicator of some serious health problems.
In such cases, you should immediately seek proper medical attention to treat the underlying health condition. But if the itchy skin has been caused due to dry skin, insect bites, or mild skin inflammation, it can be safely treated with home remedies.
Home Remedies For Itchy Skin
In this section, we have included several recipes that you can use to treat itchy skin. All of these remedies are extremely simple and can be made with ingredients that are easily available at home or a nearby store. They are natural, ensuring that there are no side effects.
Rest assured these remedies take action pretty quickly, are reliable and safe!.
1. Colloidal Oatmeal
If you want to relieve itching skin, you can try taking a warm bath in colloidal oatmeal,which is made from oats ground into a very fine powder. This is used in many moisturizing creams and soaps, serving the same purpose of minimizing skin itches. The oatmeal helps your skin retain moisture and forms a protective barrier to help with inflammation as well (3). We suggest that you directly use it with water.
- 1 cup of colloidal oatmeal
- 1 bathtub or bucket full of lukewarm water
To begin, pour the cup of oatmeal powder into the warm water. We suggest keeping the water lukewarm, possibly similar to your own body temperature. Using cold water may not be as relieving, and if you heat the water too much, you might come in for rashes and blisters later on.
In any case, after you pour the cup of oatmeal, stir the water until it is evenly mixed. You will know when to stop mixing as the water will take on a slightly murky appearance. That’s when you can use the water to take a bath.
It would be better if you had a bathtub since it is more efficient. Simply, get into the tub and soak yourself in the oatmeal bath for about 15 to 20 minutes. If the itch is in a particular part of your body, then dip that part into the water, and keep it submerged for the same duration. Then dry yourself with a soft towel, and the itch will disappear for sure!
However, if you don’t have a bathtub, you can pour the water over the affected area with a mug. Subsequently, dry with a soft towel to relieve the itch.
2. Witch Hazel
Witch hazel is another effective home remedy that you can use for relieving itchy skin or other similar skin irritations. It is a flowering plant that is found throughout North America. The extract obtained from its leaves and bark has several antioxidants that have anti-inflammatory properties.
- Witch hazel extract
- Carrier oil – either coconut or jojoba
In its purest form, witch hazel is too concentrated to be applied directly to the itchy part of your skin. Therefore, it needs to be diluted before use. For this purpose, you can use a suitable carrier oil with the extract.
To begin, take a little amount of witch hazel extract and mix it with coconut oil or jojoba oil. The quantity of the carrier oil should be equal to or more than the quantity of the witch hazel extract. Mix both of them properly for a couple of minutes, after which it can be applied to your skin.
You can directly apply the extract to the affected part of your skin. And after application, leave it on for around 30 minutes before rinsing it off with water.
Mint or peppermint is a well-known remedy for many types of skin and health problems. It contains menthol that has anti-inflammatory as well as antimicrobial properties. So, if you have dry, itchy skin, it will not only help soothe it but will also get rid of harmful microbes in the skin. Besides, it has a cooling effect that is great for soothing irritated skin.
- 2 tablespoons of dried mint leaves
- 16 oz. of boiling water
- Tools and appliances – cotton ball, pan, spoons, and a jar
Take 16 ounces of water in a pan and heat it until it boils. Once the water has reached boiling temperature, put the two tablespoons of dried mint leaves, and cover the pan. Then let it sit for a few minutes to cool the solution. After it has cooled, put it in a jar, and the mint extract is ready for use.
Now, for its application, dip a soft and clean cotton ball into the jar to soak it with the mint solution. Then gently apply the soaked cotton over the itchy areas to reduce the irritation within a few minutes.
Replace the cap of the jar in which you have stored the solution, keep it stored in a safe place, and use it whenever your skin starts to itch again.
4. Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple Cider Vinegar (4) is a very effective treatment for managing intense itching and skin irritation. It has antiseptic, antimicrobial, and antifungal properties to reduce skin irritation and itching. Besides, Apple Cider Vinegar is slightly acidic, which helps restore your skin’s natural acidity levels and keeps the growth of irritation-causing microbes in check.
- Apple cider vinegar
- Warm water
- Tools and appliances – soft towel, cotton swab, pan
Depending on the area affected by the itching, the preparation and application of this particular home remedy may vary. If you have a localized itch on a specific part of your body, then the quantities of the ingredients will be less.
First off, heat some water in a pan until you get it to a lukewarm temperature. Then, take a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar, and put it in the pan. Stir it well to mix evenly, and you will get a diluted solution of apple cider vinegar.
Next, dip a cotton swab into the solution and gently apply it over the affected area. Leave the solution on your skin for around 20 to 30 minutes before you rinse it off with warm water.
But if you feel itchy all over, it is best to take a bath in the solution. In that case, take around 2 to 3 cups of apple cider vinegar and put it in a bucket or bathtub filled with warm water. Stir it gently till it is evenly mixed.
Next, soak your body in the bathtub for about half an hour and then dry yourself with a soft towel, and the itching will be gone.
Basil is a therapeutic herb that possesses anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties. Its leaves contain a compound known as Eugenol, which numbs the nerve endings on the skin. As a result, it provides quick relief from itchiness and other skin inflammations (5).
- 1 tablespoon of dried basil leaves
- 16 oz. of boiling water
- Tools and appliances – pan, washcloth, a jar, and spoons
First off, pour the water in a pan and boil it. Then, put the dried basil leaves into the boiling hot water, and cover the pan with a lid. Keep it like that for around 5 to 10 minutes, which is enough time for the basil leaves to boil. After that, allow it to cool for a few minutes and pour the solution into a jar.
Then, take a clean and soft washcloth and dip it in the solution. Gently apply the wet cloth to the itchy area on your skin to reduce irritation. You can use the remaining solution in the jar in a similar manner if you experience itching skin again.
6. Lemon Oil
The essential oils extracted from lemon have antibacterial and antifungal properties. They can kill the harmful bacteria that cause skin inflammations and itch from spreading on your skin. Besides, lemon oil has skin soothing properties that can relieve severe itching and irritation on your skin. Due to this reason, lemon essential oils have been used as an effective home remedy to treat itchy skin for a long time.
- 20 drops of lemon essential oil
- 3.5 ounces of carrier oil
- Tools and appliances – bottle, dropper, cotton swab
To create the lemon oil extract, pour the 20 drops of lemon essential oil with a dropper into a suitable carrier oil. For this purpose, you can either use grapeseed, cocoa butter, or olive oil. Stir the mixture until it is evenly mixed, and pour it into a bottle.
Let the bottle sit like that for 4 to 5 days, after which you can use the lemon oil extract to relieve your itchy skin. Soak a clean cotton swab in the mixture and gently dab it onto the affected part of your skin. Keep it for a few minutes before washing it off.
If you are experiencing an itching sensation all over your body, add this extract to your bath or a bucket of warm water. All you have to do is soak yourself in the water for a few minutes to get quick relief from the itching.
Thyme is a very useful medicinal herb that acts as a natural antiseptic. That is why its flowers, leaves, and oil have been long used as a home remedy for several ailments, including itching skin. It possesses chemical compounds that provide a numbing sensation and kill harmful pathogens. And due to this reason, it has anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial characteristics as well (6).
- 1 tablespoon of dried thyme leaves
- 16 oz. of boiling water
- Tools and appliances – pan, cotton swab, and a jar
First, take 16 ounces of water in a pan and bring it to a boil. Then, add one tablespoon of dried thyme leaves to it, and cover the pan with a lid. Let the thyme leaves boil in the water for 5 to 10 minutes before putting the pan away from the stove. After that, let it sit for a while to allow the solution to cool.
Once it has cooled down sufficiently, take a clean swab of cotton and dip it in the solution. The soaked cotton swab should be gently dabbed on your itchy skin to relieve the irritation. Then, put the remaining solution in a tightly sealed jar for later use.
8. Baking Soda
Baking soda can be considered to be one of the most well-known home remedies for itchy or inflamed skin. It has potent anti-inflammatory properties, due to which it can be used for severe or persistent itching. Also, it takes action pretty quickly and provides a cooling effect on the affected part of your skin. Apart from that, it helps in restoring the skin’s pH balance.
- Baking soda powder
- Warm water
Depending on the type of itch you are experiencing, the preparation and application will vary. If you have a localized itch, then take some amount of baking soda, and mix it with warm water in a pan or a clean dish. In this regard, three parts of water should be used for mixing with one part of baking soda.
You will get a milky white paste, which should apply to the affected part. Use a soft and clean washcloth for the purpose, and leave it on your skin to dry for half an hour. After that, you can rinse it off with lukewarm water.
However, if you are experiencing itchy skin all over the body, then add half a cup of baking soda powder to a bath full of warm water. Let the water sit for a few minutes, or stir it gently with your hand to allow the powder to dissolve.
Once the powder has dissolved, get in the tub. You need to soak in the baking soda bath for 15 to 20 minutes. Then dry yourself off with a clean towel to get relief from the itch.
Other Home Remedies That You Can Use For Itchy Skin
In this section, we have described some additional home remedies that you can use to get rid of itching skin. These are relatively simple as well, and they provide quick relief from this irritating skin condition.
1. Aloe Vera Gel
The aloe vera plant is known for its medicinal properties that can treat a wide range of skin conditions. Its leaves are thick and fleshy and are filled with a gel-like substance. This gel has strong anti-inflammatory characteristics, and it also helps in moisturizing the skin (7).
So, if you have an aloe vera plant at home, simply pluck one of its leaves and cut it longitudinally to squeeze out the gel. You can then directly apply this aloe vera gel to the itchy portion of your skin to get relief. And it will keep your skin hydrated to prevent any further itching.
2. Essential Oils
Apart from the recipes we have already included in the previous list, there are other essential oils that can help relieve itches and other skin irritations. These are neem oil, sesame oil, coconut oil, lavender, chamomile, and clove oil.
You can apply coconut or neem oil on your head to get rid of an itchy scalp. Sesame and lavender oils have a soothing effect on your itchy skin when directly applied to the affected area. You can also mix these oils in warm bath water and soak in it to relieve the itches affecting your whole body.
3. Cold Compress
If you have moderate itching, you can relieve it by pressing a cold cloth or an ice pack against the affected skin area. The cold will numb the nerve endings on the skin, thereby suppressing the itching sensation (8).
So, if you have an itch, then you can put a cold ice pack or a wet cloth on your skin and leave it for 10 to 20 minutes. You can repeat this process several times to get relief.
Benefits Of Using Home Remedies To Treat Itching
Compared to conventional methods of treatment, using home remedies have several advantages, which we have discussed below.
The conventional methods for treating itches and other skin irritations involve the use of topical corticosteroid creams. Although they are effective, these creams can be pretty expensive.
In contrast, using home remedies is considerably more cost-effective since the ingredients for such remedies are available for very low prices. And you don’t need any specialized equipment to prepare them either, which further adds to their cost-effectiveness.
2. No Side Effects
As you can observe from the lists we have made above, most of the home remedies use natural ingredients derived from plants. And due to this aspect, they have no unwanted side effects, making them relatively safe to use. In fact, many of these ingredients have several beneficial compounds that are necessary for keeping your skin healthy.
On the other hand, topical creams used in conventional treatments use a wide range of artificial chemicals. These chemicals may have adverse side effects on sensitive skin if not used carefully.
3. Easily Available Ingredients
The fundamental principle behind home remedies for itching skin is to provide fast and convenient relief from the condition and other skin issues. Due to this aspect, most of the ingredients used in these home remedies are readily available at home.
Even if you do not have some of the ingredients at hand, you can get them at any grocery or convenience store near your home. As such, these remedies are extremely convenient and quick.
If a part of your body suddenly starts itching, then you can conveniently treat it with some of the home remedies we have suggested. Most of the recipes are relatively straightforward and can be prepared pretty quickly.
They are relatively effective in cooling down and calming the nerve endings on the skin surface. And you can apply them to your skin to get prompt relief from itching.
You can also use some of the more simpler remedies we have suggested, such as cold compress or aloe vera gels, to manage and soothe the condition. And, we suggest that you always keep the skin hydrated and use soft, clean clothes to prevent itches in the future.
With that, we have arrived at the end of this informative guide. We will definitely be back with more reads like this in the future.
Until then, stay tuned. Farewell!