Home Allergy Test for Contact Dermatitis- How to test your skin for allergies? #PatchTesting


Contact Dermatitis to a necklace

Contact Dermatitis is an extremely common problem, caused by an allergic reaction to various substances coming in contact with the skin. An itchy, flaky skin rash is the commonest symptom. Common forms of contact dermatitis include Hand Eczema, Eyelid Dermatitis or Facial Dermatitis.

People with a history of childhood eczema/asthma/ hay fever are particularly prone to allergic reactions. Identifying allergens like cheap jewellery (Nickel/ Cobalt are the main culprits) is quite easy, as the reaction occurs on the ears or under watch straps, where the skin is exposed to the metals.


Eczema on the face- Often caused by a contact dermatitis

However, facial allergic contact dermatitis is  difficult to diagnose, particularly in women who use a number of cosmetic creams. Moreover substances one is touching with the hands and thus coming in in-direct contact with the face, can also cause allergic reactions.

The ideal method of identifying possible allergens, is to consult a dermatologist and undergo a procedure called patch testing. However, this can be quite cumbersome and not always necessary, particularly if you can identify the problem yourself.

What can you do @ Home, to test your skin for allergic reactions to products you want to use?

Home Allergy Testing

Home Allergy Testing

Here is a simple home based test you can do to identify possible contact allergens. Just follow a few simple steps.

1. Apply the cream/ product you want to use, twice a day for 3 days on your elbow crease, making sure you rub it in.

2. Wait for 7 days after the first application.

3. If you experience no itching and can see no evidence of redness or flaking of the skin by the 7th day of application, you are unlikely to be allergic to the product, which can now be safely used on your face or any other part of the body. If you do experience redness/ itching- you are likely to be allergic to the product and should avoid it.



Simple, isn’t it?

Unsure whether your problem is a contact dermatitis or something else? –  This is what my Online Dermatology Consultation service is for!

Feel free to post your question, in the question box at the top. 🙂

About Dr.Sasi Attili

Dr. Sasi Kiran Attili is the founder of Online Skin specialist LTD and is the principal Dermatology consultant on this website panel, answering Dermatology Questions from visitors around the world. He is a UK trained/ accredited consultant Dermatologist & Dermatopathologist. He is a member of the British Association of Dermatologists. He currently works as a Consultant Dermatologist at Dewsbury Hospital and entertains private dermatology consultations Online and within Leeds/ Yorkshire. This blog has been created to answer common and simple questions that users might have regarding the skin.
This entry was posted in Rashes and other skin problems. Bookmark the permalink.