Allergy to Skin Moisturizers

Allergic to Skin Creams

Skin moisturizers can cause allergic skin reactions..

Can I Be Allergic to Skin Moisturizers?

Absolutely. Many moisturizing skin creams contain various chemical ingredients, both active and inactive, that can result in contact dermatitis.

If you've noticed that your skin reacts negatively after you apply a moisturizer, or if you've already been diagnosed with contact dermatitis, you should check labels of skin creams carefully before use. Lanolin, for example, is one ingredient to look for.

It is both a common active ingredient in these products (such as Eucerin and Lubriderm) as well as a common cause of this type of allergic reaction.

What other moisturizing skin cream ingredients may be to blame for a reaction? Sunscreens, fragrances and preservatives such as benzalkonium chloride, benzyl alcohol, DMDM hydantoin, glutaraldehyde, and propylene glycol may all cause contact dermatitis.

Learn more about other common causes of cosmetic allergy.

If you're in the drugstore and puzzled by the abundant selection of moisturizing creams, remember that you can always ask your physician or pharmacist for a recommendation.


Beltrani VS, Bernstein IL, Cohen DE, Fonacier L. Contact Dermatitis: A Practice Parameter. Ann Allergy Asthma Immunol. 2006;97:S1-38.

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