If you wear special eczema gloves made from bamboo fibres before you sleep, is it possible to break (or reduce) the habit of scratching at night? Let’s find out.
Everyone who suffers from eczema knows that the symptoms usually get worse at night. The constant itching makes it difficult, if not impossible to get a decent night’s sleep.
You may be able to avoid scratching during the day, when you are busy and distracted. But, the urge to scratch at night is involuntary. It’s like a habit that has been developed over time.
Why do we scratch more at night?
Why does scratching feel good? By substituting the itch with some pain through scratching, we distract our skin from the itch, and it also releases chemicals in our brain that gives relief. So, unconsciously, we start to crave this chemical more and more. And the relief that you get from scratching can become addictive.
At night, scratching becomes a reflex action that you may not even be aware of. It’s common for eczema sufferers to wake up in the morning to find specks of blood on their sheets and under their fingernails. As well as red, raw skin that has not been given any chance to heal.
Scratching may be involuntary to relieve an itch. But scratching also has other side effects. The damage caused to the skin can trigger the release of histamines, which lead to even more intense itching, and more scratching.
This itch-scratch cycle is extremely difficult to overcome, and the more you scratch, the more damage you cause to your skin barrier. The patch of skin can harden, or get infected, leading to more itching.
How eczema gloves stop scratching
To avoid unconscious scratching at night, the first line of defense is to avoid your itch triggers. For example, wear breathable materials, avoid heat and sweat, and dust and irritants.
The next step is to reduce the damage to your skin caused by scratching. Keep your fingernails short. Or wear breathable gloves made from bamboo fibres to protect them at night.
Bamboo gloves help keep your fingernails away from your skin entirely. And they also keep ointments and moisturisers on the skin, giving them a chance to heal.
Why are bamboo gloves good for eczema?
You are probably familiar with gloves made from cotton. But bamboo eczema gloves are gloves made from bamboo fibres.
To make bamboo gloves, bamboo leaves and stems are crushed and chemically processed into a bamboo viscose, then spun into fibres, which are then turned into fabrics and sewn into gloves.
The reason they are suitable for people with eczema is because they are extremely lightweight and breathable, to the point that you barely notice you are wearing them. The less sensation you feel, the less chance there is of triggering an itch.
Bamboo fabric also feels cool to the touch. When worn, it won’t trap heat and cause your hands to sweat, triggering a flare up. Additionally, bamboo gloves help to wick moisture away from the skin to evaporate quickly at the surface of the gloves.
More importantly, they feel extremely soft and silky-smooth to touch. And since the gloves have very little stitching and no embroidery, they won’t irritate your skin when worn.
Bamboo eczema gloves vs cotton gloves
Because of the way bamboo gloves are made, the fabric provides some advantages over cotton.
Firstly, the fibres in bamboo gloves are longer compared to cotton. Under magnification, bamboo fibres appear more “lined up” with less twisting, and a cross section shows the arrangement of fibres to be more uniform. This could be a reason why bamboo gloves feel smoother to the touch compared to cotton.
Next, bamboo fibres have the ability to wick away moisture more effectively than cotton. Again, this could be due to the fact that bamboo fibres are longer and less twisted up than cotton, leaving more spaces open to absorb moisture. When a fabric has better moisture wicking ability, sweat will not build up on your skin.
Third, bamboo fibres have lower thermal conductivity compared to cotton. This means that it will not absorb or retain heat, but instead moves it away from your skin. Less heat build up means less discomfort, especially at night.
As a result, bamboo gloves feel smoother and cooler, and can prevent build up of sweat on the hands.
How to use bamboo gloves
If you intend to wear it for sleeping at night, you can apply your regular moisturiser on your hands as usual, then wear the gloves over it.
They can also be worn throughout the day. But if you need to wash the dishes or handle wet items, you can wear rubber gloves over the bamboo gloves. This will protect your hands from the latex, as some people’s skin will react to it.
A side note: It’s possible to use your mobile phone touch screen without taking off the gloves. It will still work 🙂
How to wash bamboo gloves
Bamboo gloves are thinner than other gloves, so they need a little bit more care to keep them lasting a long time.
The best way to wash bamboo eczema gloves is to hand wash in mild detergent, then hang to dry.
You can also wash it in the washing machine, but remember to put it in a netting, similar to other delicates. As long as it is in a netting, it’s ok to run it through the spin cycle too.
Where to buy bamboo eczema gloves in Singapore
You can buy bamboo eczema gloves online at Skinshare Singapore (skinshare.sg), with local and international delivery options available.
There are also eczema gloves for kids. There are three main sizes for children for ages 3-4 years, 5-6 years, and 7-8 years. The gloves are stretchable and will retain its properties even after many washings.
Buy bamboo gloves online
Latest reviews for bamboo gloves
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ “Very comfortable gloves”– Pei Ling, August 2020
Able to type on my touchscreen phone too. Which is cool cos I dun have to remove my gloves while texting!! Also, the measurement guide was useful for me to decide on the size.”
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ “Slept through the night”Zachary, August 2020
I’m wearing gloves to sleep for the first time and this glove is comfortable, i slept through the night without taking it off. Its abit thin though, have to wash with care.
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ “Exactly what I needed”Ruth, May 2018
The bamboo gloves were exactly what I needed, thin enough for Singapore’s heat and even for me to touch my phone screen! I love it’s softness and how it hugged your skin to have a better fit. Prompt delivery too! I am getting another pair 🙂
About Skinshare Singapore
Skinshare.sg is a skincare and nutrition platform for eczema. We source for the best skincare products from around the world to help the dermatitis/eczema community in Singapore and the region. Our goal is to help CALM, CARE and HEAL your skin for the long term, without resorting to harsh steroids or drugs.
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