I absolutely love Neem oil.  It is my bathroom cabinet saviour oil; my son’s eczema saviour oil and my daughters saviour oil for her teenage hormonal acne.  When I was first introduced to neem oil I couldn’t believe how quickly my son’s painful and itchy eczema flare up was calmed and controlled.  Knowing that his prescribed steroid cream didn’t ease his itch, or work quickly on his eczema I was advised by a family member to try neem diluted with another carrier oil.  I’m so glad I listened to their advice.

My son’s eczema itch stopped and within 2 days his eczema was noticeably calmer.  Within 2 weeks it was completely gone from his elbow, neck and knee joints. 

Now…I have to admit that at this point we had already eliminated milk and sugar from my sons diet.  His eczema flare up was however triggered when he accidentally ate a pancake that had cow milk as an ingredient.  The difference this time was that I didn’t panic and use a steroid cream or his usual prescribed dry skin creams, like I had during his previous flare ups.  Instead I continued with his 100% natural Tigs & Moo Naked Body Butter and simply mixed several drops of neem oil in with it, into the palms of my hands.

Even the nutty smell pungent smell of the neem oil could be forgiven, as we watched the eczema fade away without needing yet another trip to the doctor. 

That was four and a half years ago and I haven’t used a steroid cream ever since…despite the conventional dermatologist telling me that I should.  It is amazing how many doctors are still unwilling to try a more Homeopathic or Ayurvedic remedy over something like a topical steroid cream which at some point, with long-term use will cause damage to the skin, as is the case for my mum.  Topical Steroid Withdrawal is hell to go through for anyone let alone a child.

Neem, combined with my own body butter was and still is a little miracle dream team. 

Like many other natural oils and butters, neem has absolutely fantastic anti-inflammatory compounds that can soothe the skin and reduce the dreaded eczema itch and irritation. Some of these amazing anti-inflammatory properties are three compounds called nimbidin, nimbin and quercetin.  

Now, I’m no scientist, but I believe it works so well because neem also has antibacterial and antifungal properties.  I have even used this as a natural insect repellent when added to another carrier oil. 

Neem only has a comedogenic rating of 1 – 2 meaning it is less likely to block pores, making it a good choice for acne sufferers.  For those who want an oil that can aid collagen production, dry skin and wrinkles, neem also has an absorbency rating of 5, making it an oil that slowly absorbs into the skin and therefore offers a protective barrier.  Some of its other benefits also include properties such as fatty acids, antioxidants and Vitamin E.

When it comes to the smell, like Marmite, you either love it or hate it, but that is why diluting neem with another carrier oil is something I do, unless I am dabbing it directly onto acne.  My kids love the smell, I don’t!  But as I have seen the benefits of this oil first hand, I do add a couple drops to my daily facial moisturiser.

As always, test anything new on the inner part of your elbow and wait 48 hours.  If you’re going to give it a try, go for Organic Cold Pressed Virgin Neem Oil.

My skin tone, eczema, adult acne and fine lines salute this oil with the most respect!

Alison Williams-Smith

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