Many dermatologists believe eczema is related to allergies, and certainly anybody with sensitive skin knows they will react to a number of chemicals which don't irritate other people -- so a good approach to a moisturizer is one with as few ingredients as possible. The fewer ingredients, the less likely you are to develop a reaction. So called "natural" ingredients aren't the best either: pollen, nuts, dander.... these all-natural, organic products give many people violent allergic reactions, whereas petroleum jelly (aka Vaseline) does not.
You can therefore smother white petrolatum (yet another name for the stuff known as Vaseline) over your entire body, but it's not particularly pleasant and you'll be leaving greasy fingerprints all over. Petrolatum is not absorbed by the skin, it acts as a barrier, preventing moisture loss, nothing else, so it only really works well when it's applied right after soaking. Lotions, or oil in water emulsions feel softer and less greasy, but the National Eczema Association
recommends using the more concentrated water in oil emulsions -- the water in the thin lotions evaporates, leaving your skin dryer than it was, whereas the water in thicker creams is absorbed then trapped in the skin.
This is why I developed the following recipe: it is thick and rich but is quickly absorbed by the skin and does not feel greasy. For more details on this cream read this instructable
Stick blender or strong arm with a whisk
Container such as a 16 oz wide mouth jar, recycled honey bottle or similar container -- this cream is too thick for a pump.
Clean and sterilize your measuring cups, bowls, containers and tools. A dishwasher with hot water will do the job but be careful with PET containers: my recycled honey bears shrivel up in the heat of the dishwasher so after cleaning them by hand I put a little rubbing alcohol in them and swish it around then let it evaporate.
1/2 cup grape seed oil
1/4 cup ewax
3/4 cup water
1 tbsp glycerin (add this to the water)
1/4 tsp vitamin E
12-15 drops of lavender essential oil
1/8 tsp of Germall Plus (a preservative)
In a small container such as a stainless steel measuring cup, combine ewax and grape seed oil. Heat over a pan of simmering water till the wax melts and stir till ingredients are thoroughly combined. In the same pot of simmering water, but in a separate container warm the water so the oil and water reach approximately the same temperature.
Slowly drip the oil mix into the hot water while blending with the stick blender till the oil and water are thoroughly emulsified.
After it cools down to 120°F (like a warm cup of tea) you can blend in the optional additives.
Pour into your container(s) before it gets a chance to thicken.
Moisturize all over within 3 minutes after getting out of a bath or shower. If you are using topical skin medication, first put on the medicine, then use this cream. Moisturize each time you come into contact with water (handwashing, etc) and whenever your skin feels dry and itchy.