Right now is a prime time to talk about priming (corny, don’t judge me)! I stopped using Milk of Magnesia as a face primer when I read about how damaging it could be to the skin over time. MoM is too acidic for daily use, and breaks down your skin’s protective barrier if you use it too often. No thanks! My boyfriend was absolutely disgusted to know I was priming my face with a laxative, but that didn’t bother me (LOL!). The long-term results did! I noticed the oiliness and acne were worse on the days when I didn’t prime my face with the MoM. I knew I had to find something else, so I was excited to stumble upon a blogger chatting up calamine lotion as a safer alternative.
Yes, calamine lotion – the cream your parents covered you with when you were lucky enough to catch the chickenpox as a kid. Turns out, calamine lotion is also a skin protectant known to help remedy diaper rash, sunburn, eczema, acne, and you guessed it — oily skin. Many of the commercial brands of calamine lotion are simply combinations of zinc oxide and iron oxides. My skin absolutely loves it!
How I Use Calamine Lotion
- Cleanse and moisturize the face. Allow the moisturizer to dry completely.
- With a stippling brush, apply a dime-sized amount of calamine lotion to the face. Or less. A little goes a long way.
Calamine lotion doesn’t work quite as well as Milk of Magnesia, but well enough to keep my T-zone in check for about 8-9 hours. I no longer experience the hormonal acne that Aunt Flo usually brings every month either – score! Most important is the fact that with repeated use my skin is actually improving. Calamine lotion is ridiculously inexpensive, and gentle enough for daily use. I can definitely live with that!
I am still investigating DIY recipes and “clean” brands of calamine lotion (I’m not entirely sure that’s necessary or even possible, given the limited ingredients as is). So far, I’ve only found recipes with baking soda. (Way too many people have shared baking soda skin care horror stories, and even though I’m personally fine with using baking soda on my underarms, I’m going to pass on trying it on my face.)
Is it safe?
As is the case with anything, certain people with a sensitivity to the ingredients experienced skin irritation. Do a patch test if this is your first time. I scoured the internet for side effects and toxicity issues, and I’m happy to say I didn’t come up with much of anything. Zinc oxide is potentially harmful if swallowed, and poisonous if the gas is inhaled in large quantities (industrial plants, chemical industry, etc). I wouldn’t recommend this for anyone with dry skin.
Have you ever used calamine lotion as a face primer? Share your experience in the comment section below!
Until next time!
Reclaiming Eden cannot make claims to treat or prevent any condition, illness or disease. All information should be used for informational purposes, and does not replace the advice of trained medical professionals or dermatologists. Be well!