Talc powders are counterproductive for heat rash: You should be doing THIS instead

heat rash or prickly heat or miliaria on the back skin asian man Skincare

Our bodies use sweat as a natural survival mechanism against the heat and to regulate our body temperature.

To make sure our bodies don’t overheat, it secretes sweat from sweat glands that are located below our skin. When the secreted sweat reaches the surface of the skin, it evaporates and cools down our bodies.

But what happens when you sweat excessively?

Excessive sweat prodction can cause asemo or heat rash, which causes small bumps, redness, and/or itchiness around the areas that you sweat the most.

For many, the go-to solution for asemo is to apply talc powders like baby powder or prickly heat powder to dry and cool down the skin.

But this is completely counterproductive – it will only make your asemo much, much worse.

What you actually should be doing to cure your heat rash is maintain a strong skin barrier.

This may sound difficult to do, but once you know HOW to have a strong skin barrier, it’s actually very easy and simple.

asian woman outside wiping forehead sweat with hand

What is asemo or heat rash?

Asemo (ah-seh-mo) is the Japanese term for heat rash. It is extremely common, especially during the summer or in tropical climates.

According to Daiichi Sankyo, asemo occurs when our bodies sweat profusely, interfering with the regular cycle of sweat secretion and evaporation.

In environments with high temperatures and high humidity, sweat cannot evaporate fast enough and the excess sweat clogs our pores.

In other words, our sweat, which is supposed to be released from our bodies, becomes trapped underneath the skin.

The trapped sweat forms small, red, and itchy bumps on the skin surface, AKA asemo.

heat rash or prickly heat or miliaria on the back skin asian man

Sweating is inevitable – it’s not something we can control.

One common treatment that many people confide in is talc powders.

These products have been marketed as solutions to heat rash because of their cooling and drying properties that absorb excess moisture on the skin.

But the reality is that these properties make your asemo worse.

Talc powders only make your asemo worse

Baby talcum powder container on gray fabric background

Why talc powders should be avoided①: They clog sweat even more

Contrary to popular belief, talc powders like baby powder and prickly heat powder DO NOT soothe, relieve, or prevent asemo.

But why? Let’s start with dissecting what talc is. 

Talc is a natural mineral substance used in many cosmetics and hygiene products for its silky and dry texture.

The reason why talc provides a drying and silky texture is because it fills in your pores to give your skin an even surface. It prevents sebum, sweat, and other natural bodily secretions from rising to the skin’s surface.

But this is extremely counterproductive. If you read the above causes of heat rash carefully, you now know that clogged pores are the biggest cause of it. And talc powders make that worse: they clog your pores even more, blocking the already-clogged sweat further into your skin.

Although it may feel good initially, applying talc powder on top of your sweat-clogged pores only creates further buildup underneath the skin.

Why talc powders should be avoided②: They destroy your skin’s barrier function

Drying out your heat rash with talc powder creates a sudden imbalance in your skin’s hydration because it forcefully makes it dry. It also prevents your skin’s natural sebum production to compensate for the dryness.

When your skin is dry, the cell arrangement of your skin’s outermost layer (stratum corneum) is disturbed and weakened. 

Because the outermost layer of your skin (stratum corneum) is responsible for protecting the rest of your skin, this disturbance destroys your skin’s barrier function.

This makes it much easier for sweat to seep into the skin and clog pores, making your heat rash worse.

Thus, in order to properly take care of your heat rash, it is important to avoid these drying talc powders that weaken your skin’s barrier function and further clog your pores.

Instead of using talc powders, one easy solution to preventing sweat-clogged pores and strengthening your skin’s barrier function is to moisturize.

In order to make your asemo better, you need to effectively moisturize

You might be thinking, “My skin is already moisturized from sweat… Moisturizing will only make my heat rash worse!”

But sweating doesn’t mean your skin is moisturized. In fact, when sweat evaporates, the natural moisture within your skin also evaporates, causing overdry of your skin. As mentioned above, this type of extreme dryness only worsens your heat rash. 

The best way to prevent this is to maintain a strong skin barrier, and this can be achieved by keeping your skin in a moisturized state. 

In order to do this, it is important to effectively moisturize by replenishing your skin with 2 key components:

  1. WATER to hydrate your skin
  2. OIL to seal the hydration in your skin and prevent it from evaporating

“But where can I find a product that will effectively moisturize my skin?”

Earthcare Asia is here to help with Aquatect Gel.

aquatect gel asian woman washing face at bathroom sink

Aquatect Gel: Golden water-to-oil ratio that strengthens skin barrier

This is an effective moisturizer that is formulated with a golden water-to-oil ratio of 8:2

This golden ratio not only provides ample hydration to your skin with water but also locks the moisture within your skin for a long period of time with oil.

Without water, oil cannot fundamentally moisturize your skin or strengthen its barrier function.

Without oil, the hydration will simply evaporate and take your skin’s natural moisture too.

This effective moisturizer combines these two essential elements to effective moisturization and replenishes them at the same time. This will strengthen your skin’s barrier function and maintain it too.

By maintaining your skin’s moisturized state for a long period of time, your skin becomes stronger against external stimuli and sweat-clogged pores.

With carefully selected moisturizing ingredients, Aquatect Gel is also an all-in-one product that has 7 functions:

  1. Lotion
  2. Milky products
  3. Cream
  4. Serum
  5. Body cream
  6. Face mask
  7. Makeup base

It can be used on your face, as well as your hands and body. It is a simple yet powerful and effective moisturizing product. 

It has also passed 3 skincare safety tests, as well as a non-comedogenic test.

  • Patch test: Aquatect Gel does not cause irritation of the human skin
  • Allergy test: Aquatect Gel is hypoallergenic
  • Stinging test: Aquatect Gel can be used on sensitive skin
  • Non-comedogenic test: Aquatect Gel can be used on acne and acne-prone skin

Talc powders are incredibly counterintuitive for heat rashes. Although its drying properties may absorb the excess sweat on your skin and cool it down, these sensations are only achieved because talc clogs your pores. And clogged pores are one of the causes of asemo, since sweat is further trapped within these pores. 

By drying out your heat rash skin with talc powders, your skin’s barrier function is also weakened, putting you at greater risk for clogged sweat and heat rash. 

Although it may seem strange to moisturize your heat rash, it is necessary to strengthen your skin’s surface to prevent your asemo (heat rash) from getting worse. The key is not just to moisturize, but to effectively moisturize by replenishing both water and oil to your skin. 

Ready to get rid of your heat rash for good with Aquatect Gel, the ultimate effective moisturizer? 


earthcare asia lp cta


Abe, M., n.d. ‘Asemo (asemo).’ Daiichi Sankyo Healthcare. [online] Available at: https://www.daiichisankyo-hc.co.jp/site_hifuken/symptom/asemo/. (Accessed 17 October 2022).




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