Calamine Lotion: Uses, Side Effects & Dosage Guide

Calamine lotion is a drug used to cure mild itchiness. It also includes insect bites, sunburn, poison oak, poison ivy, or some other minor skin conditions. This can also support dry out skin annoyance. It is useful on the skin like a cream or lotion. Calamine is a mixture of 0.5% ferric oxide and zinc oxide. This lotion is produced along with additional ingredients like calcium hydroxide and phenol.

The World Health Organization’s List includes it as an essential medicines. Calamine is accessible over the counter like generic medication. Press release in 1992, administration of The Food and Drug, U.S announced that no evidence had been given in to calamine to be actual in treating the annoyance of stings or insect bites or rashes from poison oak,  poison ivy, or poison sumac.

Administration of the U.S. Food and Drug, in September 2, 2008, recommended applying some interest over-the-counter products of skin, i.e. calamine, to grip the weeping of the skin produced by toxic plants like poison ivy, poison sumac and poison oak.

Calamine lotion has various characteristics that  help to reduce acne. These include:

Antiseptic properties

Antiseptics are substances by which growth of some pathogens and bacteria can be prevented.Antiseptic characteristic of Calamine lotion suggest that, the rapid growth of the microorganisms could be slow down by it, which causes acne.There is no research or data available to confirm this.

Astringent properties

Astringents are substances by which body tissues such as pores are tightened and shrink.It helps to prevent the excessive sebum accumulation of skin debris can be prevented by the Shrinking of pores.

Anti-inflammatory characteristics

Calamine lotion files in The WHO as an antipruritic, anti-inflammatory or anti-itch medicine. Properties of Calamine like anti-inflammatory might help to reduce inflammation linked with acne.

Conversely, in calamine lotion the astringent substances can cause dryness and irritate  skin.The Academy of  American Dermatology recommends, while treating acne avoid the usage of astringents because acne appears worse when skin is dry. 


  • To relieve pain
  • To relieve Itching
  • To relieve uneasiness from minor skin annoyances.
  • To relieve skin annoyances such as poison oak, poison ivy, and poison sumac.
  • Helps to desiccate oozing and weeping triggered by irritation because of these plants.
  • Eczema
  • Skin diseases


  • Avoid in case of exposed wounds and skin damaged.
  • Contraindicated in case of allergic reaction to any elements of calamine lotion.

Side Effects

  • Skin irritation.
  • Allergic reaction(rare)
  • Rash
  • Itching
  • Swelling (especially of the face)
  • Severe dizziness(rare)
  • Trouble breathing(rare)


  • Topical use only
  • Do not swallow
  • Not for exposed wounds and burns
  • Stop oneself from contacting with eyes

High Risk Groups

  • Patients with a recognized account of allergic reactions.
  • Hypersensitivity


The calamine lotion acquires antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties that help to reduce symptoms of acne.

Though, this is an astringent too. Dermatologists mention avoiding astringents while treating acne, as chemicals can make acne worse by drying the skin.

Calamine lotion is good for skin that causes itching, like chickenpox, plant oil reactions and heat rashes.

It is commonly safe when it is applied on the skin. But, its proof is not available that it can benefit in alleviating acne. An individual who needs to cure his acne should get advice from a dermatologist on suitable treatments.