How I Deal With My Nickel Allergy

By Adem Lewis / in , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , /

Hi, my name is Ariel and Im allergic to nickel. Hi there, Sunshines. Today im gona talk about something that affects
almost 20% of women and is the most common cause of contact dermatitus. Drum roll please. Nickel! This one sounds like a bundle of fun, doesn’t
it? So I’ve always been blessed with pretty clear
skin. I never had any major breakouts as a teen. And while I helped many women who suffered
with various allergies of just about every variety when I was working with the public,
I could sympathize with their struggles, and I did everything I could to help, but I really
didn’t understand what it feels like to have your skin blow up for no reason and struggle
and frustraition of trying to get to the bottom of it. Cut to last winter when I woke up one day
to my face, particularly the skin around my eyes having become itchy and swollen and scaley. I looked like an alligator. In fact if I was much more scaley I probably
would have gotten confused for one of those dragons in Harry Potter. Or a pet gecko. No sir, I do not sell car insurance. It felt miserable. Both because I was literally uncomfortable
but also because I couldn’t really use makeup. I didn’t want to irritate my skin more and
I had no idea what was causing it. Makeup is my happy place. Its my passion. And its my creative outlet. So it was pretty depressing having to give
all that up, at least temporarily, and I didn’t know if it would be forever because I had
no idea what was happening. So I finally get in with a dermatologist who
does a patch test on my back which was a ton of fun. Basically were just gona strap a whole bunch
of whatever might be irritating your skin on your back for two days and just kinda see
how it plays out. It felt like fire on my skin for two straight
days and when they finally pulled it off they told me that I had had a pretty severe reaction
to nickel. It was really fun when nurse looked at me
and said “Oh man that really sucks. Nickels in everything!” Oh. Ok. Good. I asked, “Is there anything I can do for this? Allergy shots? Any kind of fix?” Nope. Just try and avoid it. I was sent home with some steriod creme and
the assurance that its probably not bad enough to send me into anaphylactic shock. Well thats good. I guess. I didn’t know that was an option so now I
have something new to stress out over. Thanks. So now at least I know what im working with
and I go home determined to do some research and figure all of this out. How hard can it be to avoid nickel, right? A cursory google search confirmed that what
the nurse said was indeed true. Yes the man that sucks part. But mostly the nickel is in everything part. I mean EVERYTHING! People with very severe nickel allergies have
to go on low nickel diets, avoiding canned foods, green leafy foods, beans, chocolate! I mean im not giving up chocolate. Im just gona have to die. Kale isn’t worth it though. Goodby kale. Its been nice knowing ya. Fortunately my allergy isn’t so severe that
I really have to watch my diet. But I do try to limit canned foods. Too much sodium anyway. Most of my issues stem from cosmetics and
the things that Im putting on my skin. So here are the best tips that I found to
help keep me from having to run for the benadryl and the hydrocortisone cream. First things first, get yourself a nickel
test. Theyre not expensive and you can get them
on amazon. This is just a little thing of liquid that
you can wipe onto suspect items with a cotton swab. If the swab turns pink, then nickel is present. Isn’t science fun! It was then that I realized that some of my
most beloved skincare products were part of the problem. Because the tubes that they were in contained
nickel. Next, check your makeup brushes. Some of mine have nickel in the farrel of
the handle and some of them don’t. If they contain nickel just get a little electrical
tape and wrap it around the handle. I know it hurst my heart too to put anything
adheasive on my makeup brushes, some of which are very pretty and not very cheap. But its better than hurting my face or getting
rid of them. Another thing your going to want check for
nickel is your eyelash curler. Many of them contain nickel and your putting
them very close to a very delicate part of your face. If you can’t find a metal one thats nickel
free I suggest trying the little plastic travel variety, you can usually get them at Sephora. Nextly check your ingredients. This seems obvious. And fortunately nickel isnt one of those ingredients
that hides in plain sight under a variety of names. I asked my dermatologist and she said that
it should say nickel on the ingredients list, plain and simple. Keep an eye on cosmetics that are particularly
metallic or glittery. Those are usually the main culprets. And keep in mind that people tha are sensitive
to nickel are often times sensitive to mica and titanium dioxide. Which are often found in mineral makeup. Which is unfortunate because mineral makeup
is such a good option for so many allergy sufferers. Why can’t anything be simple? Now I don’t have to completely swear off products
that contain mica and titanium dioxide but I have noticed that if im having an allergy
flare up and I apply products that contain this, say a titanium dioxiode sunscreen, they
make it much much worse. Now jewelry is probably the main thing that
comes to mind when we think of a metal allergy. And I’d say most people have experienced irriation
from using cheap earrings at some point. I know I definately had, and looking back
I realized that it had gotten worse and worse over the years, until the point where wearing
cheapo earrings even for just a minute would be excruciating and cause really bad blisters
on my ears. Might have been a warning sign huh? So its a good idea to stick to surgical grade
stainless steel earings or 14 karat and up yellow gold. White gold can sometimes contain nikel so
its a little bit more of a gamble. Now I do have some really fun earrings that
I like to wear on special occasions that are probably not the best quality, so I coat the
posts a couple of times with some clear nail polish to protect my skin for the day while
im wearing them. And this will usually help me avoid any problems. And lastly it was a big for me to switch to
free and clear laundry detergent because some detergents can contain nickel. And I try to always remember to bring my own
wash cloth, towel, and pillow, with me wherever I go when I travel, so that way I don’t risk
ruinning a vacation by having a surprise reaction to whatever the hotel washes their linens
in. Its a really fun way to spend a vacation looking
like sloth from the goonies. Not to mention my husband keeps yelling at
me for scratching. I know its going to make it worse! I just don’t care right now! So I basically made this video because I wish
it existed when I was diagnosed with my nickel allergy. And I just want to tell you that no matter
how raw and irritated your skin is now, you’ll be amazed at it’s ability to heal itself. I was so frustraited not knowing what was
going on and it felt like irriparable damage had been done to my skin, especially my eyelids. I was afraid they would never look the same. I was terrified that I would be stuck with
permanent lizard skin. But honestly after just a week or two of finally
figuring out what was going on and making some minor changes, my skin was almost back
to normal. And aside from the occasional, small flare
up, I’ve mostly put my skin issues behind me, so there is a light at the end of the
tunnel. So let me know down in the comments if you
guys have any tips or tricks for dealing with annoying skin allergies, nickel or otherwise. And feel free to like and subscribe so that
way you don’t miss any of the videos coming out for you on mondays, wednesdays, and fridays. And feel free to share if you know of anyone
who….is allergic to nickel.

45 thoughts on “How I Deal With My Nickel Allergy

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  3. Yep just found out I have a nickel allergy and I have been trying to figure this out for 6 Plus months it has been sheer agony…..Good times 🙂

  4. Going into adulthood my body changed and now I'm severely allergic to nickel and cobalt. For me ingesting causes systemic contact dermatitis however touching undamaged stainless steel and nickel plated guitar strings do not cause a breakout. A week since diagnosis so changing my diet is proving to be the hardest thing to do lol. I'm honestly a little heartbroken about the chocolate.

  5. recently, I got my lip pierced and it broke out severly with a rash with bubbly spots all around my lip piercing, I got a new 100% titanium lip thing and I am using a steriod cream, its going away now. they used a steel piercing and all steel has a certain amount of nickel in it. it sucks because no stores sell titanium!!

  6. I am a dude. I have same problems with allergies on skin. I went to a dermatologist; and for the first time I learned a simple belt buckle could cause a break out all over the body. Also laundry soaps could be my problem too. I did not get skin patch tests but I tell you this. I am painting my belt with black enamel on the buckle; and switching to free and clear for my laundry. I have a mean rash from hell that I have been trying to figure out for months. It turns out all the evidence points to allergies from my regular doctor, and dermatologist.

  7. twinsies!!! Try nickel tested products they test the products after every production. They are usually 1ppm.

  8. I had to stop wearing all my (fake) earrings a couple of years ago cause I would get blisters after one hour of wearing them and they would take two weeks to heal. Breaks my heart not being able to use them 🙁 I tried the nail polish trick but it doesn't work for me, and It's not worth the risk for me. Now I collect jewelry made out of surgical steel or gold and wow there is so little to choose from in the steel department and gold is not a cheap material. Sucks having this allergy…

  9. I recently just started playing the trumpet and my mouth was getting irritated so 4 months later (I thought my lips were just chapped🙄😂) I went to the doctor and they said I was allergic to nickel. Which then made sense because my second piercing in my ear would get infected from certain earring (the ones with nickel). I had never heard of this allergy thanks so much for the tips!!

  10. As far as I know surgical grade steel contains Nickel as well. Also I’ve never seen any skincare product mentioning Nickel in the ingredients list. But there are Nickel tested products in some Countries (it is usually stated “Nickel tested <1 PPM). Thanks for the tip about mica and titanium dioxide…I think you might be right!

  11. I love you for this video. I worked in cosmetics for 8 years and am starting to suffer from allergic reactions from eye makeup. I've always turned green from cheap nickel jewelry and a few weeks ago I actually got a rash on my finger from wearing/holding cheap jewelry. Upon looking up the type of eczema reaction I had, it dawned on me that this had to be linked. Huge mascara lover so I always used a lash curler. I've used makeup brushes for about 15 years that are testing positive for nickel as well. Sighhhhhh thank you for helping me feel less crazy with this struggle.

  12. Please please please Make a video with the products that u can use without problems… i have the exactly same problems and im struggling To find some Make up

  13. Hi – thanks so much!! Just had the patch test done this week and me too, definitely allergic to nickel (and have itchy ring of blistering on my back to prove it!). Your video is great and your mention re soap powder is so useful – hadn't thought of that and will make sure to check the ingredients. Best wishes 🙂

  14. It’s nice to know I’m not alone! I found out I was allergic to nickel back in October of 2017…went in for some dental work and went into anaphylactic shock from the times…I now carry a epi pen everywhere.

  15. Oh how much I feel ya – I finally decided to pull the trigger and bought a Titanium watch – you know these are not cheap. I have a Ti wedding ring on my finger for over two years and nothing so .. yeah after two weeks with the watch I had to take it off. And that's with taking it off for sleeping and showering. If you haven't yet discovered check them out! they got a bunch of products, I'm not into fashion so you might find them not appealing but for me, a guy, it was really relieving when I could wear an actual belt and not some plastic stupid strap

  16. i just found out today that i have a nickle alergy after 2 peircings my conch and snug which were done with surgical steal i had to go to hospital to get both removed because it contained nickle and reacted horribly and bled pussed and swelled

  17. Dogs can also get dermatitis from the nickel in their supposedly "stainless steel" dog bowls. Stainless steel dogs bowls are primarily made in China who's not as fastidious about what goes in the metal. Nickel keeps the metal looking shiny but that is not as important that when we or a dog is constantly in contact which such like a food bowl and water bowl, that the allergy can become chronic.

    It really should not be called an "allergy" as nickel is not required as a nutritional element. You may want to find something else than using mayonnaise as it may contain hydrogenated oils. This turns a liquid oil semi solid or solid. They do this by percolating nickel though the oil. Hydrogenated oils are also found in salad dressing, in cookies, in baked goods and in margarine.

    If you have a toxic problem from nickel, you may want to avoid these foods. Yes, greens can have nickel in them but the hydrogenated oils are bad for you period and many people with dermatitis also find that any plant oils not in their natural state cause a problem for them. I have this problem. But I can eat avocados but do so in moderation. I am really fussy about what I eat now.

    As I drink loads of water (and nickel can be in your city's water) a good quality water filter which you have to change like a 3-stage osmosis filter like we have, will help too. If my filters are nearing their "time to change them out" time, I got migraines.

    Certain teas like green tea can be high in nickel but if only consumed on occasion, is not likely going to be an irritation. I do not drink regular or green tea at home, I use decaff tea only. I am very sensitive to caffeine but do allow myself one cup of coffee. And you guessed in, has nickel too.

    It seems when the exposure is chronic, that the allergies pop up. Being aware of what you can pick and choose between, is helpful as some of the foods like greens, have other properties which are marvelous. I have not found plant-food bothering me.

  18. Why are do you keep saying women ? I have a nickel allergy and I am a man and know many other men who have it too.

  19. I have a nickel allergy and I’m in a metals class right now where you make things out of metal and there’s all these drills and stuff

    My eczema is on fire right now

    It’s not that severe though
    I never have actually had to think about staying about from it… randomly I just get eczema and I’m like
    Huh I must have touched some nickel

    Also I know that I’m allergic to it because the doctor said so…

  20. Which Makeup brands do you use?
    I’ve been ordering Red Apple Lipstick since they are Comegenic, Allergen free, Gluten Free, etc. Which works wonders!
    However, I’ve been looking for brighter eyeshadows but don’t want to risk spending tons of money on stuff I can’t use, which I have tooons already 🙁
    I have a nickel allergy btw

  21. I guess I’m allergic to nickel according to be a physician assistant. For males the outbreak are located 4inches below the bellybutton. Right where a belt buckle is. So the buckle being the main culprit I always kept a barrier between my skin and buckle but, i still break out very bad. Dry itchy sometimes cracked skin. Sucks. 😥

  22. I'm pretty sure I am allergic to this because I have been having problems with my earrings and my moms been telling me for about a month Im probably allergic but I just ignored her because I wasn't swelling up like Will Smith and I could breathe so I figured that wasn't a possibility but now its so bad and so tender it hurts…And yes these are cheap earrings… I am getting a paycheck soon so hopefully I can get better ones but damn… it hurts lol I am getting hives (tmi gross) but it is the truth and my mom is asleep and I dont want to wake her up. I don't understand anything about this though lol like if I was allergic wouldn't I get rashes anytime I held nickels I literally have a coin collection so im confused why for me im only having issues with my earrings maybe because they were still open and a fresh wound because the ones they gave me fell apart in my ear and I had to get some cheap ones quick

  23. Is there anyone else who is just here because earrings and doesn't have any allergic reactions to anything else including coins because I am so confused

  24. So I just ate from a new steaming pan and OMG i feel so sick and and my teeth feel like they got metal on them and I’m nauseated ughhh I had not thought about cookware too

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