Most skin creams absorb only to the base of the epidermis layer. For dry skin, this type of absorption is adequate as it replenishes moisture to the top dry surface. However, in cases such as eczema, psoriasis, sensitive skin, itchy scalp, acne, rosacea, cradle cap, dry skin, dandruff, seborrhoea and redness, the problem lies deeper in the dermis and subcutaneous fatty layer (hypodermis).
More complex skin issues are generally stress related, causing nerve endings, nerve fibers, arrector pili muscles, dermal papillae, oil glands, blood and lymph vessels to become irritated, itchy, red and inflamed.
In order to control these problems, topical treatments must be absorbed deep into the dermis and hypodermis. A doctor may order cortisone-steroid shots to relieve the discomfort (which are effective because the needle provides a direct path to the dermis and subcutaneous fatty tissues), then will prescribe a cortisone-steroid cream. The downside is that prolonged use of corticosteroids may affect the integrity of the skin and immune system.