Colloidal oatmeal is produced by grinding and boiling oats, and is available in various formulations from bath products to moisturisers. Colloidal oatmeal contains a number of different natural components that are believed to be responsible for its diverse functional properties. Colloidal oatmeal is used as a soothing agent to relieve the itch and irritation that is associated with various dry skin conditions.
One study found that the colloidal oatmeal emollient compared with the control cream had significant benefits on people with extremely dry skin1.
Extracts of colloidal oatmeal have also been shown to possess antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activities in lab models and in animal itch models2,3. This suggests that it can limit inflammation in the skin4.
Colloidal oatmeal containing skin protectant lotion has also been shown to improve skin dryness, scaling, roughness and itch intensity in healthy women with mild to moderate itch and moderate to severe dry skin1.
The concentration of an ingredient is important for its efficacy, and therefore products containing the same ingredient may not necessarily have the same effect as in the studies mentioned above.
Updated: July 2017