Neosporin and Polysporin
"I hate Neosporin. It can cause severe allergic contact dermatitis in many people, and it can cause anaphylaxis in a small percentage of people. For most cuts and scrapes, all we need is soap and water and something to keep the area moisturized, like Vaseline, to help it heal. Patients should really only use topical antibiotic ointment if they have a skin injury that suddenly starts to get worse and has redness, pain, oozing, and pus." -- Dr. Kate Holcomb, board-certified dermatologist at Lupo Center
"I don’t keep Polysporin, or any over-the-counter microbial cream, in my medicine cabinet or house. Two of its main ingredients, bacitracin zinc and gramicidin, are highly allergenic... Our skin is very sensitive, and people can develop an allergy to bacitracin zinc and gramicidin slowly, over time, and they might not even notice. The initial allergic reaction is often delayed, sometimes up to a week, so patients don’t make the connection. Next time they use the product, symptoms such as red, itchy skin, eczematous, and weepy, swollen eyes set in faster and worse than before." -- Dr. Jillian Macdonald, dermatologist and co-founder of The Ottawa Clinic.