Review: A Spritz For Irritated Skin
If summer is the season of itchy skin for you, this soothing product really works – By India Knight
I am always on the lookout for products that help irritated skin, especially at this time of year. I am a bug magnet and everything bites me, which is unfortunate as I have various disproportionate reactions, depending on the species. Insects aside, when I lived in London I sometimes used to get these sudden, weird, raised, red flare-ups on the side of my neck or on the inside of my arms, like an allergic reaction to something, but not anything obvious. (I no longer get these — I wonder if, perhaps, they were related to pollution?)
I think a lot of people have similarly reactive skin: a little patch that appears for no reason, itches like mad and then goes away again, or all sorts of stress-related rednesses and rashes and irritations that pop up when they are least welcome. And then there are the more explicable things such as insect bites, nettle rash, snog rash, spots, grazes, you know the sort of thing. It’s really useful to have something on you that will alleviate, and ideally eradicate, the issue, not just for yourself, but also for any children you might have about your person.
Enter — smelling very strongly — Thyme Out (from Victoria Health). This completely organic, natural tincture made from thyme, water, grain alcohol and aloe vera is powerfully anti-inflammatory. It makes many claims, not least regarding acne and eczema. I can vouch, via a guinea pig (though not literally a guinea pig!), that it does seem to help with mild eczema, but I can’t vouch for anything beyond that. I didn’t test it on any people with acne — it claims it works brilliantly on it — but I did test it on two teenage spots, and it withered them very effectively. Thyme Out’s manufacturers say it also helps with rosacea and psoriasis.
You get the idea, which is, if there’s any issue to do with skin irritation, whack this on. Oh, I nearly forgot, it killed a fungal infection (good times) in a sporty child. If you have athlete’s foot or, wahey, ringworm, this might well help.
However, I used it on less revolting everyday issues: on my bare calves after chasing the dog through a patch of nettles; on my many and various insect bites; on a bit of sunburn (which it calmed); and on a week-old burn mark from the oven, which it seems to have helped. If anything itched, basically, I squirted on some Thyme Out — it comes with a refillable mini squirty bottle, which is handy to stick in your handbag or pocket. For larger areas, you soak a cotton-wool pad in it and apply to wherever you need it.
I must say, I found it a really effective product. I will be keeping a bottle in the kitchen, but I would also say that if you (or your children) have the kind of skin sensitivities I’ve been describing, then this would be a brilliant thing to take with you on holiday. What it doesn’t fix entirely, it will help in the moment, eg mosquito bites.
Thyme Out, £18;