Evening Primrose Oil for Eczema

Evening Primrose oil is taken from the seeds of the plant which originated from North America.  This plant is from the Willow Herb family of weeds.  It bears yellow flowers when in bloom, that close up in the evening hence the name, ‘Evening Primrose’  The seeds contain 10-15% of oil that is made up of essential fatty acids called GLA and that is why evening primrose oil is often taken to relieve eczema.

Evening Primrose Oil Capsules for Moisturising Skin From Within

The evening primrose plant is the only plant found, so far by mankind, that contains gammalinoelenic acid – GLA for short.  In the 1970’s scientists discovered that GLA is 10 times more effective than linoleic acid.

What Are Essential Fatty Acids?

They are vitamin-like lipids that your body cannot make, but must have.  Your body gets essential fatty acids from foods containing them; virgin sunflower seed oil, organic liver, kidneys and lean meat and legumes.  These foods belong to the linoleic fatty acid family.  Their role in your body is to ensure that your cell membranes are fluid and flexible.

Your cell membranes will become rigid when you have a deficiency of fatty acids.  Other symptoms of these essential fats show up in the following conditions;

  • Poor skin
  • Slow healing wounds
  • Arthritis
  • Dried up tear ducts
  • Faulty immune system

Blocking Agents to Absorption

Believe it or not, you may take plenty of evening primrose oil and still  not be absorbing it due to zinc deficiencies, ageing, or drinking moderate to large quantities of alcohol. The main culprit being food such as trans-fatty acids like cakes, biscuits, french fries and margarine.  (To cut a long story short, trans-fatty acids are foods that contain heavily processed oils that have become denatured.

Key Agents To Absorption

These are Vitamin C, B-Complex, Zinc and Magnesium

So How Does This Relate to Eczema?

People who have eczema have very low levels of GLA.  As Evening Primrose oil contains high levels of this fatty acid and it was the first natural remedy  for eczema  I took.  My GP prescribed them for me and I started on a dose of 2 capsules twice a day, then upping the dose to 5 capsules three times daily.

The reason for the large dose is that your skin is the your body’s largest organ.  It is also the last to receive nutrients.  Your internal organs including your brain receive the larger share of nutrients first.  This is why you might have to start small, up the dosage until you see the effects on your skin. Always take your height and weight into consideration too.

The dosage for infants is lower – 3 capsules pricked with a needle and the oil massaged gently into the tummy area.

Fpr youth and children as young as 10 – 3 capsules morning and evening with food.

Note of Caution

People with epilepsy should not take this oil.

Evening primrose oil comes in capsules and liquid form.  It is available from chemists, health food shops and online.  There are even ointments which contain this oil.  It would be good to do your own research to find out the amount of oil you need to take in order to clear your eczema.

For the record, one product I highly recommend is Udos oil. This is a mix of oils that contain essential fatty acids 3,6,9 including evening primrose oil.

Ideally, it should be mixed into soya yoghurt for ease of absorption. I have also found this oil is often confused  with borage oil which is less effective for eczema.

If you have any questions or comments, please leave them here for me to answer.

38 thoughts on “Evening Primrose Oil for Eczema

  1. Mohamed says:

    Hey Stella

    I found this article really interesting as I’m always looking for natural solutions to skin problems.

    I have a friend who has excema I think she could really benefit from Evening Primrose oil. Could you include a link to the Udos oil you recommend?

    thanks for the tip

  2. Michael Miller says:

    Our son had really bad eczema as a child. We tried almost every cream and none of them really helped. I wish we would have known about this then. At least I know now for anyone suffering from eczema issues.

    It is interesting how science is finding and proving natural remedies are effective in combating so many illnesses without the side effects.

    • Stella says:

      Hi Michael, I totally agree with you about the use of creams!  Up til now, I only use shea butter, coconut oil or olive oil.  Also on my scalp and roots.  I hope your son is healthy now…

      Science can only analyse so much – the Chinese seem to know more about herbal science and are very good at what they do, don’t you think?

  3. Bibian says:


    this is really an informative post.
    Thanks for the guidance and direction on purchasing Evening Primrose oil . I like your helpful hints on how to go about buying a particular product for eczema.. I know this will help and work with me.
    . Keep up your research and keep informing us so that we are not overwhelmed

    THANKS once again Dear.

    • Stella says:

      Hi Bibian,

      Yes, evening primrose oil is very good for oiling skin from within.  Especially in cold weather and with central heating which should be put on low.

      I am glad you found the article interesting and useful for you.

  4. Stella says:

    Hey Stella;

    You know, years ago I tried evening primrose oil for PMS symptoms. It didn’t help so much for that, so after a bottle, I stopped taking it. I had great skin at that time.

    But, I’m so glad I found your article because I’ve now developed some skin irritations and was looking for something to use naturally. I’ve been taking fish oil for my osteoporosis, but I think I will switch back to evening primrose oil, now that I have reviewed this info again.

    You article is a timely find for me for sure. Thanks for the great presentation of this supplement.
    Stella (Yes, we have the same name. lol)

    • Stella says:

      Hi Stella,

      You still need to take fish oil as it contains Vitamin D which Evening Primrose oil has not.

      Evening primrose oil contains GLA and fish oil contains EPA and DHA.  EPO (evening  primrose oil) for skin, fish oil for joints and arthritis.

      I am very glad you found this article useful though.

  5. Laura says:

    Hi Stella, I didn’t know evening primrose was so helpful for eczema. It makes sense to take such high amounts of this supplement because it takes so much to reach the skin. Since so many things can stop the absorption of evening primrose, does it help to take it an hour before any other meds or is it the amount of these others in your body that prevent absorption? In other words is the absorption directly affected in the stomach when mixed with these other supplements?

    • Stella says:

      Hi Laura, 

      Just like food, evening primrose oil will be absorbed by your body as it recognises it as such.  For better absorption, you will need Vitamin B Complex, A. C E and zinc picolinate.  I tend to use Solgar brand.  I was told this  by a Nutricentre nutritionist and it definitely helped.  Except for the expense in the long run.

      Lamberts supply a good sort of evening primrose oil.  Also when consuming oil, eat it alongside protein or soya yoghurt.

      Hope this answers your question!

  6. Chris says:

    My partner has eczema problems from time to time and she is now looking for more natural ways to handle it. In the past she has used steroid creams but is now moving away from them, due to them making her skin worse at times! 

    I’ll definitely show her this article. We constantly see capsule formats of evening primrose oil at the local store, but no liquid format – are capsules as powerful as the liquid version? What would you recommend?

    • Stella says:

      Hi Chris,

      Both have pros and cons…With capsules, she needs at least 4 capsules 3 times a day til the eczema subsides.

      With oil, you cannot be sure it is not off or rancid. You get more oil in a  bottle, but I prefer capsules myself.  It is also best to take fish oils as well as it sorts out the  inflammation and provides EPA and DHA fatty acids which we need from food.

      Fish (salmon and other oily fish) can work out very expensive. You will need to eat a whole salmon every 2 weeks until you see a difference.  I have just done that as I flared up in April.  I also made 2 litres of avocado smoothies daily and drank 2 litres of bottled water.  

      My skin has taken 1 month to clear up.   Hope this makes it easy for you to work out how long it takes to clear a flare up…

  7. angelce903 says:


    I didn’t know that evening primrose treated eczema! I heard about PMS and to have a general skin condition but not for eczema. But it’s true that when I took it, I had a very beautiful skin without pimples and my general health was improved. So you encourage me to buy it again. Thanks!

    • Stella says:

      Yes eczema can be treated with evening primrose oil.  As you have found it works very well and gives a beautiful complexion to people who would otherwise have very bad skin.

      Keep using it for your skin and PMS…so the eczema doesn’t come back.

  8. Suz says:

    I have seen the primrose before but I have not heard that there is an oil that I can use for it. This is good stuff and I feel like it should be really cool for me to try it out for myself too. I’m really glad that I can learn more about it and how to use it for eczema. Your post is very explanatory.

    • Stella says:

      Evening primrose and primrose are different plants, but if we are talking about yellow evening primrose, then maybe we are on the same page.  Hopefully, how to use evening primrose was explained in a simple manner.  Glad you want to try it.  It is non-toxic!

  9. Daniel says:

    Good day Stella, thank you for sharing this wonderful and insightful article about natural solutions to skin problems, I have had a skin related problems recently but each time, i always find it hard to get the right product to cure it. Thanks for revealing this, i will have to check out this product someday and also let family and friends know about it.

    • Stella says:

      Most skin problems are caused by using creams and lotions that aggravate the skin more.  And then also compromising the friendly bacteria on the skin and disrupting the natural oils in the skin by washing it off in showers.

      Also the quality of the water you wash with makes a huge difference.  If it is hard water, it is not a good idea to shower and sponge excessively every day.  Rather, coat your skin with virgin olive oil, then shower,  Reapply after showering when the skin is still slightly damp.

      Then when your skin is completely dry, put your clothes on.  Avoid sugary food and drinks and drink alkaline ionized water instead. It will hydrate you better from the inside.

      Thanks for sharing this article with your friends and family.

  10. Robs says:

    Hi Stella,

    I have read your article very carefully – as someone with a daughter who suffers intermittently from eczema I found this website very helpful. 

    Just wondering if you would advise taking the evening primrose oil going forward as a preventative measure or should she tackle the eczema as at when it occurs with cream? For reference she is 16.

    I look forward to hearing from you.

    Much appreciated,


    • Stella says:

      Hi Robs,

      Evening primrose oil is very useful for eczema – just include it in her diet after each meal – 2 capsules with each meal, breakfast, lunch and dinner.   Swap the sugary drinks and food with water or tasty green juices and that’s it.

      The inflammation will go down and the itching will stop.  No need for creams and lotions as they actually worsen the eczema.  Instead, she should try Forever Living Aloe vera gelly to calm itches.  A little goes a long way.

      Let me know how she gets on.

      All the best, 


  11. Nsikan Archibong says:

    Stella, you wrote a fantastic article.
    For me, any area that has to do with organics is quite interesting, and I enjoy learning about it. Many people are unaware of this. Primrose oil is new to me, but it looks great in your website picture, and how it relates to the treatment of ezema is my main concern. Because I used to have this skin problem. Thank you for the dose recommendations; I’ll be in touch for more of your writings.

    • Stella says:

      I’m glad you enjoyed reading this!  Evening primrose oil was the first supplement I took when I started having flare ups.  It definitely works and yes, you do have to take that particular dosage for the oil to have an effect on your skin – the largest organ in your body.

  12. Caleb says:

    I suffer from eczema bad in the summer. This article has been really informative and is something I can take with me on a personal level. I had no idea primrose oil could help as a natural remedy to eczema. I will now be more careful when eating certain food so that I do not block the absorption of this oil. I will also take a look at acquiring and taking this before bed at night. This has been amazing to learn about!

    • Stella says:

      I’m glad you enjoyed reading this article Caleb – the whole site is geared to clearing up your skin naturally.  So I suggest you take time out to read the rest of the articles on it.

      Make sure to get fresh evening primrose oil.  It should not smell when you open a bottle.  Otherwise it is rancid…

  13. Kwidzin says:

    Thanks for sharing this article with the rest of the world.  think the more articles like this about on the internet then the better it is, especially on the medicinal front. This oil works wonders I used to buy it as liquid in a bottle. But i have never tried  the capsules out yet.

    Which would yopu say is best? Capsules or oil?

    • Stella says:

      If you are taking a lot of evening primrose oil, it actually works out cheaper to buy the Evening primrose in oil form rather than capsules.

      Just make sure that the oil is fresh and buy in smaller quantities like 250ml at a time.

  14. angell70 says:

    Hi, every time I step into your website I am astonished at how well and good explained are your posts. I really love this article especially since all is about the natural product. To be honest I have been taken in the past Evening Primrose but not essential oil, which I will definitely give a try(ps later on into the Pharmacy). I have no idea that essential fatty acids called GLA are missing from my body as no doctors let me know, thank you for letting me know. Blessings and love to you.

    • Stella says:

      Hi, there is no such thing as essential oil of Evening Primrose….You can get the oil in liquid form or capsules from your local health food shop or online.  Make sure it is fresh though and only buy in small quantities.

      You will need 5 capsules three times daily.  You should expect to see a difference to your skin within a month.

  15. Kokontala says:

    Well, I don’t have eczema but I should thank you for sharing this important information.

     Having read that this Evening Primrose Oil for eczema is taken from the seeds that contain oil that is made up of fatty acids gave me a thought that it may useful for any one. 

    Can I use this oil, for a clear and glowing skin, even if I don’t have have eczema?

    • Stella says:

      Yes, you can take this oil for clear skin, but if you also drink vegetable juice with apple for added flavour, you will find a much greater difference in it’s appearance and texture.

  16. Herman says:

    This blog provides insightful information on Evening Primrose oil and its effectiveness in relieving eczema. Originating from North America, the plant contains gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), which is ten times more effective than linoleic acid. The post emphasizes the importance of essential fatty acids, discusses potential absorption challenges, and offers practical dosage recommendations for different age groups.

    Personal experience is shared, highlighting the significance of adjusting dosage based on individual factors like height and weight. The caution for those with epilepsy, clarification on absorption issues, and the recommendation of Udo’s oil for its essential fatty acid mix add practical value. The blog concludes with advice on different forms of Evening Primrose oil and a helpful note about potential confusion with borage oil. Overall, it provides a concise yet comprehensive guide for those considering Evening Primrose oil for skin health.

    • admin says:

      Yes, I have used all the methods described on my site.  They all work, but I don’t use them all at once.  Right now I have a stubborn patch of eczema on my foot and I have used an overnight clay poultice then applied Aloe Propolis Creme, Aloe vera gelly and shea butter to my foot for moisture.

      The scabby patch is thinning and returning back to it’s original colour – brown.  Which is good.

  17. William Wiegand says:

    I loved reading about this natural solution for eczema, and learning more about evening primrose how it is made up of an essential fatty acid. I just wanted to ask if you know anyone that has ever utilized this before, and it was a better way to get rid of eczema then other treatments?

    • admin says:

      When treating eczema, you need to have a regime.  Internal, external and environmental.

      Internal is what you eat or drink to cleanse yourself from eczema…this includes evening primrose oil

      External is the aloe gelly, olive oil and shea butter for moisturising and clay or moor mud baths

      Environmental is clothing, turning off central heating and switching from duvet covers to cotton throws

      Evening primrose oil is just one of the things you do to clear eczema.  I wouldn’t say it is the best treatment because you have to take lots of factors into consideration like how severe the eczema is and how widespread.

      Evening primrose oil was the first thing I used in healing my skin and it worked.  But when my skin turned to exfoliative eczema, I used dead sea salt baths with olive oil.  Then applied olive oil and shea butter to my cracked skin.

  18. JakeZachary says:

    Stella, this is a great article on Evening Primrose Oil. I’m a newbie when it comes to oils and this is a great explanation of the benefits and uses. Is it only available as an oral supplement or can it be used topically?

    Most of my experience with natural oils relates to diffusers and aromatherapy. Do you think this could be combined with a fragrant oil for similar results?

    Thanks for the great information!

    • admin says:

      Hello Jake, as far as I know, Evening primrose oil is only for eating purposes.  I have never used it on my skin, but internally, it works wonders.

  19. Jake Devins says:

    Hey, i”m always on the lookout for natural skin solutions. The personal experience shared about using it for eczema and the dosage details make it more relatable.

     I appreciate the caution for people with epilepsy and the emphasis on absorption factors. It’s not just a generic overview but feels like genuine advice based on real experiences. I’m intrigued and might give it a try for my skin issues.

    • admin says:

      I remember telling a person to give Evening Primrose oil a try for his dry hands.  He came back 3 weeks later and said it worked.

      Also a pastor’s daughter was suffering from it, so I told him to wean her off sugary food and drinks and use this oil.  She is still clear of the eczema 6 years later.

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