These ’allergens’ can include two types – those in the air and others that come into direct contact with your skin.

59% of Britons claim to have experienced either eczema or dermatitis.*
*E45: Straight Up Skincare Project 2018. Survey of 5,009 UK adults. September 2018.

Airborne and Contact allergens

Airborne Allergens
Outside, most airborne allergens come from grass and trees in the form of pollen. These allergens are so widespread that they get their own forecast. Inside our homes the source of airborne allergens is our pets.
Those with pet allergies can react to harmless proteins in the pet's urine, saliva or ‘dander’ – a term for dead skin cells. In some highly sensitive cases, this can cause an intense rash on the face, neck and upper chest.
Warm, indoor environment are ideal for dust mites to breed and air currents from forced air-heating or air-conditioning can spread pet related allergens. While we may not be able or willing to avoid these triggers completely, there are ways to help reduce their impact.
Contact Allergens
Allergens that irritate our skin when we come into physical contact with them are perhaps the most obvious trigger for skin conditions. No wonder we keep putting off that bathroom deep clean.
Common allergens that cause irritation when they come into contact with our skin include:
  • Soaps
  • Detergents
  • Perfumes
  • Cosmetics
  • Solvents
  • Hair Dyes
  • Wool
  • Rubber
  • Machine oils

Soaps and detergents are a particular problem as they increase the pH of our skin. Remember that gloves worn to avoid contact with allergens can be an irritant in themselves.
“Around 25% of UK adults think that chemicals the detergents / cleansing products have the biggest effect on their skin.”* *E45: Straight Up Skincare Project 2018. Survey of 5,009 UK adults. September 2018.
Tip 3 - Allergens


Advice from our skincare experts† to protect against airborne allergens

†Experts working with RB do not endorse any product or brand.

Vacuum floors, soft furnishings and also beds regularly

Pop cuddly toys in the freezer occasionally to help minimise bugs

Choose wooden floors and blinds over carpets and curtains

Keep animals out of the bedroom, and off the bed – sorry, pet lovers.

Opt for furniture that can be wiped clean, like leather sofas

Wash bedding at high temperatures to help kill dust mites

Reduce the overall temperature

Advice from our skincare experts‡ to protect against contact allergens

‡ Experts working with RB do not endorse any product or brand.  

Maintain a healthy skin barrier

Avoid baby wipes – these contain preservatives that can irritate the skin.

Choose products that are hypoallergenic and fragrance-free

“Dry skin and eczema have many potential triggers – it’s important to identify the combination that may be unique to you.” Angelika Razzaque, GP Partner and Trainer


Date of preparation: October 2018.