The 12 Best Body Washes for Eczema, According to a Dermatologist

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Byrdie / Chloe Jeong

If you’re dealing with eczema, take heart in knowing that you’re not alone. The skin condition—characterized by red, itchy, dry, flaky patches—affects over 10% of people in the U.S., according to the National Eczema Association. There are multiple factors at play when it comes to both what causes eczema and what exacerbates it, but the products you’re using are a major component—particularly things you reach for daily, such as lotion and body wash. 

When it comes to the latter, opting for gentle, soap- and fragrance-free formulas is key, advises Dr. Robin Gmyrek, a dermatologist at Park View Laser Dermatology in New York City. Seek out soothing and hydrating ingredients—ceramides, colloidal oatmeal—instead, she adds. (Also important: Keep shower time to under 20 minutes and stick with lukewarm water, since hot water can further dry out and irritate our skin, she points out.)

Ahead, the best body washes for eczema that fit the bill.

Best Overall: CeraVe Soothing Body Wash

CeraVe Soothing Body Wash
What We Like
  • Moisturizes

  • Soothes itchy skin

  • Helps calm redness

What We Don't Like
  • Strong scent

This pick checks all of Gmyrek’s eczema wash boxes: “It’s fragrance, paraben-, sulfate-, and soap-free, and contains ceramides to restore and maintain a healthy skin barrier, along with hyaluronic acid to help skin retain moisture,” she says. The affordable price is an added bonus, as is the pleasantly creamy texture. It even boasts the National Eczema Association’s seal of approval.

Active Ingredients: Ceramides, sodium hyaluronate | Skin Type: Dry | Benefits: Moisturizes, helps maintain skin barrier, helps relieve irritation | Size: 10 fl. oz | Byrdie Clean: Yes | Cruelty-Free: No

Best Drugstore: Eucerin Baby Eczema Relief Cream Body Wash

Eucerin Baby Eczema Relief Cream Body Wash
What We Like
  • Large bottle

  • Gentle

  • Soothes itchy skin

What We Don't Like
  • Not sulfate-free

This newbie is extra creamy, extra gentle, and extra soothing. Credit a 2% concentration of colloidal oatmeal, an ingredient Gmyrek says has been scientifically-proven to improve skin barrier function, prevent water loss, and act as an anti-inflammatory. There are also protective ceramides in the mix, all in a fragrance-, dye-, and soap-free formula.

Active Ingredients: Colloidal oatmeal | Skin Type: Dry | Benefits: Moisturizes, helps maintain skin barrier, helps relieve irritation | Size: 13.5 fl. oz | Byrdie Clean: Yes | Cruelty-Free: No

Runner-Up, Best Drugstore: Aveeno Daily Moisturizing Body Wash

Aveeno Daily Moisturizing Body Wash
What We Like
  • Inexpensive

  • Lathers well

  • Silky texture

What We Don't Like
  • Contains potential irritants

This formula, another one of Gmyrek’s picks, is another great colloidal oat-based option. On top of that, it also contains humectants to attract moisture to the skin, she says. One caveat: While it is soap-free, it is lightly fragranced, so pass on this one if your skin is super sensitive. 


Active Ingredients:
Oat kernel flour, extract, and oil | Skin Type: Dry | Benefits: Moisturizes, helps maintain skin barrier, helps relieve irritation | Size: 18 fl. oz | Byrdie Clean: No | Cruelty-Free: No

Best for the Whole Family: Honest Soothing Therapy Eczema Body Wash

Honest Soothing Therapy Eczema Body Wash
What We Like
  • Contains probiotics

  • Soothes itchy skin

  • Fragrance-free

What We Don't Like
  • Small bottle

An estimated 10 to 20% of children have eczema, according to the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. Enter the beauty of this body wash, a surefire safe bet for the entire fam, even babies. It touts soothing colloidal oatmeal and probiotics coupled with deeply moisturizing coconut and safflower oils and is another National Eczema Association seal-holder.

Active Ingredients: Oat kernel flour, coconut oil | Skin Type: Dry | Benefits: Moisturizes, helps maintain skin barrier, helps relieve irritation | Size: 8 fl. oz | Byrdie Clean: Yes | Cruelty-Free: Yes

Best Foaming: Skinfix Eczema+ Extra Strength Body Cream

Skinfix Eczema+ Extra Strength Body Cream
What We Like
  • Vegan and cruelty-free

  • Gentle

  • Hydrating

What We Don't Like
  • Texture is on the lighter side

Everyone likes that foamy, sudsy feeling you get from a body wash—the only problem? It can be a major no-no if you have eczema, since, generally speaking, the ingredients that make for that fun foamy feel are harsh surfactants that can spell disaster for sensitive skin. That’s what makes this option, a favorite of Byrdie Associate Editorial Director Hallie Gould, such a winner. Dermatologist-tested, it boasts a long list of hydrating and soothing ingredients yet still checks that sensorial box, foaming up nicely thanks to the addition of coconut-derived surfactants.

Active Ingredients: Colloidal oatmeal, sweet almond oil | Skin Type: All | Benefits: Moisturizes, helps maintain skin barrier, helps relieve irritation | Size: 8 fl. oz | Byrdie Clean: Yes | Cruelty-Free: Yes

Best Oil: Avène XeraCalm A.D Lipid-Replenishing Cleansing Oil

Avène XeraCalm A.D. Lipid-Replenishing Cleansing Oil
What We Like
  • Gentle

  • Ultra soothing and hydrating

  • Helps calm redness

What We Don't Like
  • Has a bit of a scent

A great pick for both eczema-sufferers and those dealing with ultra-dry skin alike, this rich oil hydrates during cleansing and works to seal in moisture afterward. Credit oils rich in ceramides and omega-6 fatty acids, coupled with the brand’s thermal spring water, rich in skin-soothing minerals. Also nice: It’s another pick that works well for babies, kids, and adults.

Active Ingredients: Thermal spring water, castor oil | Skin Type: Dry | Benefits: Moisturizes, helps relieve irritation, soothes | Size: 13.5 fl. oz | Byrdie Clean: No | Cruelty-Free: No

Best Bar: Dove Sensitive Skin Bath Bars

Dove Sensitive Skin Bath Bars
What We Like
  • Less packaging than body wash

  • Removes makeup

  • Lathers well

What We Don't Like
  • Not as hydrating as other options

Dove is known for gentle cleansers rich in moisturizing ingredients, and this formula is no different. Fragrance-free and hypoallergenic, the soap-free bar is also packed with hydrating actives and works equally well on the body, face, and even hands. Not a huge fan of cleansing bars? Gmyrek says the creamy body wash version is a great choice, too.

Active Ingredients: Glycerin | Skin Type: All | Benefits: Moisturizes | Size: 3.8 fl. oz | Byrdie Clean: Yes | Cruelty-Free: No

Best Anti-Itch: Curel Itch Defense Body Wash

Curel Itch Defense Body Wash
What We Like
  • Gentle

  • Hydrating, nourishing formula

  • Inexpensive

What We Don't Like
  • Contains sulfates and parabens

As anyone who’s ever dealt with eczema will tell you, itching is one very real, very annoying symptom of the condition. Happily, this cleanser is not only gentle, effective, and hydrating, it also works to stop dry, itchy skin before it even crops up. We love it not only for those combatting eczema but as a universally great option in the winter when dry, itchy skin is almost inevitable.

Active Ingredients: Glycerin, jojoba oil | Skin Type: Dry | Benefits: Moisturizes | Size: 13.5 fl. oz | Byrdie Clean: Yes | Cruelty-Free: No

Best Budget: Cetaphil Ultra Gentle Body Wash

Cetaphil Ultra Gentle Body Wash
What We Like
  • Scented options smell great

  • Rich and nourishing

  • Gentle

What We Don't Like
  • Contains sulfates

“This is creamy and moisturizing and cleans without drying,” says Gmyrek of another one of her picks. It’s fragrance-free and contains glycerin to hold onto moisture, along with aloe which acts as both a moisturizer and an anti-inflammatory,” she adds. It also suds up nicely and has a delightful texture. And, of course, we’d be remiss not to mention the insanely wallet-friendly price.

Active Ingredients: Marigold extract, aloe | Skin Type: All | Benefits: Moisturizes | Size: 16.9 fl. oz | Byrdie Clean: No | Cruelty-Free: No

What Our Testers Say

“If you love a rich, pudding-like body wash that feels like it deeply cleanses the skin, you’ll love Cetaphil's Ultra Gentle Body Wash.” — Rebecca Norris, Product Tester

Best Fragrance-Free: Eucerin Skin Calming Body Wash

Eucerin Skin Calming Body Wash
What We Like
  • Moisturizes

  • Soothes itchy skin

  • Doesn't leave a greasy film

What We Don't Like
  • Unpleasant scent

Yet another gentle, soap-free option that Gmyrek recommends, this relies on soybean and castor seed oils to restore the skin barrier, she says. Plus, it also doesn’t contain any dyes, another commonly irritating ingredient. 

Active Ingredients: Soybean oil, castor seed oil | Skin Type: Dry | Benefits: Moisturizes, helps relieve irritation | Size: 8.4 fl. oz | Byrdie Clean: No | Cruelty-Free: No

Best for Eczema & Psoriasis: SheaMoisture African Black Soap Eczema & Psoriasis Therapy

SheaMoisture African Black Soap Eczema & Psoriasis Therapy
What We Like
  • Inexpensive

  • Less packaging than body wash

  • Lathers well

What We Don't Like
  • Not for extremely dry skin

This pick relies heavily on natural ingredients, many of which are certified organic. More specifically, it relies on a trio of hydrating oils, hydrating shea butter, and healing willow bark and oat extracts, making this a great pick for those dealing with eczema and/or psoriasis. (While the two are different skin conditions, they do come with many of the same symptoms.)

Active Ingredients: Shea butter, aloe | Skin Type: All | Benefits: Moisturizes, helps clear away acne-causing bacteria | Size: 5 fl. oz | Byrdie Clean: Yes | Cruelty-Free: Yes

Best for Face & Body: La Roche-Posay Lipikar Wash AP+

What We Like
  • Gentle enough for use on the face

  • Foaming texture

  • Good value

What We Don't Like
  • Contains sulfates

Eczema can occur anywhere and everywhere on the body, including your complexion. If patches are popping up on the skin both above and below your chin, consider this one-stop-shop. Formulated for dry to extra dry skin, it does foam up a bit, but is still very gentle, locking in moisture for up to 24 hours. It too has earned the National Eczema Association’s stamp of approval and can be used on babies as young as two weeks. A true shower staple for sure.

Active Ingredients: Niacinamide | Skin Type: All | Benefits: Moisturizes | Size: 13.5 fl. oz | Byrdie Clean: No | Cruelty-Free: No

Why Trust Byrdie?

Byrdie contributor Melanie Rud has over a decade of experience in the beauty industry, writing for some of the biggest magazines and websites out there. She also has dealt with eczema since she was four, and has used pretty much any and every eczema wash and cream out there.

Meet the Expert

Robin Gmyrek, M.D., is a board-certified dermatologist at Park View Laser Dermatology in New York City. She specializes in both cosmetic and general dermatology, combines her dermatologic medical knowledge along with her compassionate nature to provide comprehensive treatments to patients.

Article Sources
Byrdie takes every opportunity to use high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial guidelines to learn more about how we keep our content accurate, reliable and trustworthy.
  1. Nassau S, Fonacier L. Allergic Contact Dermatitis. Med Clin North Am. 2020 Jan;104(1):61-76. doi: 10.1016/j.mcna.2019.08.012

  2. American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. Eczema Overview.

  3. Cork MJ, Danby SG, Ogg GS. Atopic Dermatitis Epidemiology and Unmet Need in the United Kingdom. J Dermatolog Treat. 2020 Dec;31(8):801-809. doi: 10.1080/09546634.2019.1655137

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