So many flowers and plants are top allergens (browse through our Allergen-Not An Allergen tab), and this beautiful bloom is no exception. Allergic contact dermatitis to Alstroemeria (or tuliposide A, the allergen in this flower) can be common in gardeners, florists, and gardening hobbyists, showing as thick, cracking, red, tender skin on fingers where they most come into contact with the flower. Gloves can help if they are made out of nitrile, as tuliposide A is known to penetrate through vinyl gloves. There have been some recent reports of reactions to nitrile, however, and while more studies are needed, some possible culprits could be latex contamination from where the nitrile gloves are manufactured, or rubber accelerators like thiuram. Note that airborne contact dermatitis has also been reported, so if you have patch tested positive for tuliposide A, look out for redness and other signs of irritation under the nose, or even hyperpigmentation on the arms or face.
If you have a history of sensitive skin, don’t guess: random trial and error can cause more damage. Ask your dermatologist about a patch test.
On the prevalence of skin allergies, see Skin Allergies Are More Common Than Ever and One In Four Is Allergic to Common Skin Care And Cosmetic Ingredients.
To learn more about the VH-Rating System and hypoallergenicity, click here.
Regularly published reports on the most common allergens by the North American Contact Dermatitis Group and European Surveillance System on Contact Allergies (based on over 28,000 patch test results, combined), plus other studies. Remember, we are all individuals — just because an ingredient is not on the most common allergen lists does not mean you cannot be sensitive to it, or that it will not become an allergen. These references, being based on so many patch test results, are a good basis but it is always best to get a patch test yourself.
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