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These Top-Tier Anti-Itch Creams Will Soothe Your Skin

Prevention Logo By Kayla Blanton of Prevention | Slide 1 of 12: Summertime always brings a ton of fun—outdoor adventures, baseball games (if you’re into that kind of thing), swimming, grilling, and more. What’s not so fun is the season’s increased potential for skin irritations. Between bug bites, sweat-induced eczema flare-ups, and surprise encounters with poison ivy while weeding, it’s crucial to have the best anti-itch cream on hand that actually works—and fast. Because everyone knows there’s nothing’s worse than an itch you can’t scratch or soothe. Anti-itch creams can also be used on psoriasis, seborrheic dermatitis, sun burns, allergic reactions, and more, explains Anar Mikailov, M.D., F.A.A.D., founder of Skintensive. And although you may immediately think of hydrocortisone cream when the topic arises, it’s not the only option. “Anti-itch creams often contain an ingredient called pramoxine hydrochloride that acts as a topical anesthetic, minimizing the sensation of itching or pain,” explains Rebecca Marcus, M.D., board-certified dermatologist and founder of Maei MD. “Topical steroids such as hydrocortisone decrease itch by decreasing inflammation.” She adds that menthol can also help by stimulating sensations of warmth and cooling, “which detracts from the itch sensation.” Even coconut oil, Dr. Mikailov says, has anti-itch properties because it’s moisturizing, and dryness can cause your skin to crawl. How we chose the best anti-itch creams We asked Dr. Mikailov and Dr. Marcus for their go-to anti-itch cream recommendations. We also researched producs individually and explored hundreds of customer reviews to include some of the market’s best-sellers.Our top picksWithout further ado, soothe your worries and any sudden itches by stocking up on one of these ointments or lotions.

Summertime always brings a ton of fun—outdoor adventures, baseball games (if you’re into that kind of thing), swimming, grilling, and more. What’s not so fun is the season’s increased potential for skin irritations. Between bug bites, sweat-induced eczema flare-ups, and surprise encounters with poison ivy while weeding, it’s crucial to have the best anti-itch cream on hand that actually works—and fast. Because everyone knows there’s nothing’s worse than an itch you can’t scratch or soothe.

Anti-itch creams can also be used on psoriasis, seborrheic dermatitis, sun burns, allergic reactions, and more, explains Anar Mikailov, M.D., F.A.A.D., founder of Skintensive. And although you may immediately think of hydrocortisone cream when the topic arises, it’s not the only option. “Anti-itch creams often contain an ingredient called pramoxine hydrochloride that acts as a topical anesthetic, minimizing the sensation of itching or pain,” explains Rebecca Marcus, M.D., board-certified dermatologist and founder of Maei MD. “Topical steroids such as hydrocortisone decrease itch by decreasing inflammation.” She adds that menthol can also help by stimulating sensations of warmth and cooling, “which detracts from the itch sensation.” Even coconut oil, Dr. Mikailov says, has anti-itch properties because it’s moisturizing, and dryness can cause your skin to crawl.

How we chose the best anti-itch creams

We asked Dr. Mikailov and Dr. Marcus for their go-to anti-itch cream recommendations. We also researched producs individually and explored hundreds of customer reviews to include some of the market’s best-sellers.

Our top picks

Without further ado, soothe your worries and any sudden itches by stocking up on one of these ointments or lotions.

© Sarna, CeraVe, and Aveeno

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