Bleach Baths Really Are A Thing (For Eczema Patients)

woman in a tub
Photo Credit: Andrea Piacquadio/ Pexels

This is that unpopular opinion post — except that it’s a fact (and not my opinion). Dermatologists have long been prescribing bleaching baths to patients to help them with skin issues. No, not injecting or drinking, but, yes, bathing.

[SEE ALSO: PSA: Do NOT Inject Lysol Or Bleach Into Your Body]

I first heard about it from dermatologist Dr. Charles Crutchfield who recommended “very diluted” bleach baths to “reduce the bacteria on the skin can make atopic eczema worse.”


Atopic eczema is one of the worst types of this dry skin condition which results in itchy, tight and patches all over the body that tends to leave severe discoloration, even after healing.

It typically starts at childhood, but adults can get it and it’s chronic.

But, back to the bleach. The American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) also recommends it as a treatment to help lessen symptoms. The reasoning is that infections can exacerbate the already troublesome condition.

“There is emerging evidence that patients with atopic eczema may have a mild disability to repair their skin barrier,” said Crutchfield. “Also, excessive bacteria on the skin with bacterial enzymes (proteases) can make eczema worse.”

[SEE ALSO: Eczema Be Gone: 5 Solutions To Combat FlareUps And Irritations]

To use, the AAD recommends adding about 1/4 cup to warm bath water and soaking in the tub for 5 to 10 minutes and then patting (not rubbing) dry.

Crutchfield added that the bleach bath is just one part of a larger treatment plan which can include prescription moisturizers, antihistamines, and antibiotics.

Anecdotally, I have a few friends who swear by this treatment, noting it’s the only thing that helps them get their (or their kids’) outbreaks under control.

So, yes, whether or not you are here for it, people do actually bathe in bleach.

For those with eczema, have you tried this? Good or nah?

About The Author

Stephenetta (isis) Harmon

Stephenetta (isis) Harmon serves as digital media director for Hype Hair and founder/Black beauty directory for Sadiaa Black Beauty guide, the premier directory Black-owned beauty brands.