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Article: From Childhood Struggles to Skincare Innovation: The Story Behind 24-Hour Rescue

From Childhood Struggles to Skincare Innovation: The Story Behind 24-Hour Rescue

From Childhood Struggles to Skincare Innovation: The Story Behind 24-Hour Rescue

Ever since I was 10 years old, I’ve struggled with dry, flaky skin, especially during the harsh winter months.

Eczema Cream karen fischer

The pain was so intense that every morning, I would reach for a sticky ointment that only provided relief for a few hours.

Despite drinking plenty of water and eating my greens (even with blah-tasting flaxseed oil), my skin remained dry and flaky. I tried everything from pawpaw ointment to expensive creams, but nothing worked.

I concluded that no one understood my skin type.

[When I learnt cosmetic chemistry I finally understood why no one creates creams for super (painful) dry skin types—it is very very difficult to formulate. But not impossible.]
It's in the family

Dry, flaky skin runs in my family. My dad, cousins, and aunties also suffered from it. This struggle pushed me to create a cream that provided deep hydration for exceptionally dry and winter-sore skin.

The Birth of 24-Hour Rescue

I’m Karen Fischer, a nutritionist and the formulator of 24-Hour Rescue. You might be wondering about the recent formula change, so here’s a quick backstory.

The original 24-Hour Rescue balm was a happy accident.

It was originally going to be an ointment. The first version was like all other water-free balms, and did not really help my skin as it still felt sore the next morning.

Then a formulating mistake led me to add extra ingredients, and instead of discarding it, I used it on my skin. To my surprise, the next day, my skin was glowing, hydrated and surprisingly not sore.

The flakes were gone, even 24-hours after applying the cream.

My skin felt good—it seemed stronger. 

However, the formula separated over time.

By then I had studied cosmetic chemistry, so using my knowledge I reformulated it into 24-Hour Rescue 2.0, a unique water-based body butter with an exceptionally (crazy) high oil content.

Any cosmetic chemist will tell you this type of formula should not be attempted as the risk of product separation and instability is high. So it is rarely, if ever, attempted in the skincare industry (according to my manufacturer).

However, my skin needed the magic oil-water ratio. I was NOT giving up. 

So a year of testing on flaky legs and in the lab, resulted in a stable and super hydrating cream. 

What’s New?

The updated 24-Hour Rescue is now 100% natural, retaining all of the main ingredients including shea butter, castor oil, apricot oil and lush camellia seed oil.

The minor support ingredients have been modified, but the cream still hydrates with the same intensity.

Key Benefits
  1. 24-Hour Rescue provides long-lasting hydration, ensuring your skin stays soft and hydrated throughout the day and night.
  2. It is now non-greasy. Unlike water-free balms and ointments that are greasy and may stain clothes and bedsheets, 24-Hour Rescue absorbs quickly, leaving an invisible barrier to combat dry skin without feeling greasy.
  3. It has the correct pH so it is good for your skin microbiome (see next). 
Good for Your Skin Microbiome

Did you know most skin creams, cleansers, water and soaps have the wrong pH which can cause the loss of beneficial skin microflora from your skin? (Lambers, 2006)

It was once thought that the skin's pH was around 5.5 (5.0 - 6.0) but this is incorrect. Today many skin care brands have not updated their creams, cleansers and moisturisers to be in line with the new science, so be wary of products claiming "pH balanced" as it could have the wrong pH.

Water has an alkaline pH (7.0-8.0) and soaps and cleansers with a pH or 8.0-9.0 can make your skin barrier alkaline up to 6 hours after use, rendering it defenceless to combat harmful microbes (Lambers, 2006). An alkaline pH also causes microflora to detach from your skin (Lambers, 2006).

Researchers tested skin surface pH and found that an acidic pH range of 4.0 to 4.5 “keeps the skin’s microflora attached to your skin”. They also found skin that has a pH below 5.0 is healthier than skin with a higher pH.

24-Hour Rescue has an acidic pH of 4.5 so it is good for your skin's microbiome. Plus it can help to restore the skin's acidic pH after showering.

In summary, 24-Hour Rescue is a game-changer for those with exceptionally dry skin, offering deep hydration without the drawbacks of traditional ointments. Give it a try and experience the relief and rejuvenation it provides.

shop 24-Hour Rescue


24-Hour Rescue Ingredients

Let me share with you why I chose each ingredient in this formula: 

[full ingredients list, shown in alphabetical order]

Camellia Oleifera Seed Oil is my favourite natural seed oil for ageing or dry skin. It has excellent skin conditioning, moisturising and anti-ageing properties, helping to reduce fine lines and improve skin elasticity. Camellia seed oil also has antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant activity, according to this research found in PubMed, and it may help to calm red skin. Our camellia seed oil is organic.

Castor Seed Oil is a lovely natural seed oil that is thicker, and thus more hydrating, than most other oils so it is excellent for dry skin. It is often a star ingredient in baby nappy rash creams as it has anti-inflammatory properties, and it has excellent skin conditioning, moisturising and hydrating effects.

Cetearyl Alcohol is not really an alcohol, it’s a super hydrating wax with skin conditioning, opacifying and formula stabilising properties (reference). We chose 100% natural cetearyl alcohol. It is the most hydrating of all the emulsifiers and thickeners I have tested over the past 10 years. 

Cetearyl Glucoside is a natural emulsifier (reference) that links water and oil together, helping to deliver both ingredients into your skin to boost hydration. 

Cyamopsis Tetragonoloba Gum - we use a tiny amount of this natural guar gum as it has excellent stabilising properties (reference), so the cream does not separate. Guar gum is also used in food production and it is free from gluten, corn and other potential allergens so we feel it is a safe choice.

Caprylhydroxamic Acid is a natural preservative-alternative that has antimicrobial and chelating properties (reference). It helps to keep the product free of nasties and it is safe for use on broken skin, unlike many other natural preservative alternatives. 

Glycerol (glycerin) is a wonderful ingredient for hydrating dry skin. Our glycerol is 100% natural with skin conditioning, skin protecting and humectant properties, that literally draws moisture to your skin (reference). 

Glyceryl Caprylate is a skin conditioning agent (reference) which means it hydrates dry skin. But we use it as a natural preservative-alternative, which keeps 24-Hour Rescue free from microbial growth. This action helps to keep your skin safe too, so it's a win-win.

Sambucus nigra fruit extract (Elderberry) is a natural fruit extract, rich in phytonutrients, including quercetin, ferulic acid and vitamin C, which have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. The bioflavonoids in elderberry also have astringent and skin firming qualities, helping to combat ageing skin and wrinkles, according to this research. The 100% natural elderberry extract we use in 24-Hour Rescue also has mild antibacterial properties so it helps to protect the formula AND your skin.

Shea Butter is an exceptional skin hydrator for dry skin, and we use lots of it to super hydrate your skin. It provides a skin barrier, and it has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties according to this research and this skin barrier research. Shea butter also helps to fight inflammation according to this research

Stearic Acid is 100% natural with cleansing, emulsifying and emulsion-stabilising properties (reference).

Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Kernel Oil is a natural and light oil that has excellent skin moisturising and skin conditioning properties that are good for dry skin. 

Purified Water is the magic ingredient with skin-conditioning ability which works alongside the oily ingredients to give your skin long-lasting hydration.

Lactic Acid has buffering, skin conditioning and humectant properties. Lactic acid is also a component of Natural Moisturising Factor in healthy skin and it can also increase flexibility and thickness of the skin barrier (ref.).

We use a tiny amount of natural, pure lactic acid specifically to adjust the pH of 24-Hour Rescue so it mimics the pH of healthy skin (around 4.5 to 4.7). 

As always, 24-Hour Rescue is free from the following:

  • No animal products (vegan)
  • No chemical preservatives
  • No steroids
  • No parabens
  • No dyes or mica
  • No fragrance (natural or artificial)
  • No petrochemicals including petroleum, mineral oil or paraffin (they can make your skin feel drier and weaker once they wear off, and they're sticky)
  • No lanolin (it can make your skin feel drier once it wears off)
  • No benzoates or benzyl alcohol
  • No soy 
  • No dimethicone (silica/silicon can be a skin irritant)
  • No essential oils (they can irritate sensitive skin)
  • No retinol (vitamin A dries out your skin and can trigger skin flaking)
  • No citrus/lemon (lemony essential oils can make your skin sunburn more easily)
  • No gluten
  • No olive oil (it damages the skin barrier)
  • No citric acid
FAQ: What has changed in the formula?

24-Hour Rescue was almost 100% natural before but we decided to make a few small tweaks to give it 100% natural status. The main (bulk) of the ingredients were not changed, so 24-Hour Rescue will look and feel the same when applied to your skin.

We switched from artificial preservatives to natural preservative-alternatives (Glyceryl caprylate, Elderberry and Caprylhydroxamic Acid) as we have used these ingredients in past products, so we know they are gentle and effective from years of customer feedback.

The phytonutrient benefits from Elderberry are a bonus that can also help to protect your skin from premature skin ageing. 

We also switched from a synthetic pH adjustor and replace it with natural lactic acid. 

We are confident you'll love the new and improved 24-Hour Rescue for dry, flaky, itchy, chapped and ageing skin.

Plus, 24-Hour Rescue also has a “gentle on skin” 90-day money back guarantee, so there is no risk trying it.


eczema cream 24-hour rescue



Lambers H, Piessens S, Bloem A, Pronk H, Finkel P. Natural skin surface pH is on average below 5, which is beneficial for its resident flora. Int J Cosmet Sci. 2006 Oct;28(5):359-70. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-2494.2006.00344.x. PMID: 18489300.

Pons-Guiraud A. Dry skin in dermatology: a complex physiopathology. J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol. 2007 Sep;21 Suppl 2:1-4. doi: 10.1111/j.1468-3083.2007.02379.x. PMID: 17716284.

Cao C, Xiao Z, Wu Y, Ge C. Diet and Skin Aging-From the Perspective of Food Nutrition. Nutrients. 2020 Mar 24;12(3):870. doi: 10.3390/nu12030870. PMID: 32213934; PMCID: PMC7146365.

Palma L, Marques LT, Bujan J, Rodrigues LM. Dietary water affects human skin hydration and biomechanics. Clin Cosmet Investig Dermatol. 2015 Aug 3;8:413-21. doi: 10.2147/CCID.S86822. PMID: 26345226; PMCID: PMC4529263.

Proksch E, Berardesca E, Misery L, Engblom J, Bouwstra J. Dry skin management: practical approach in light of latest research on skin structure and function. J Dermatolog Treat. 2020 Nov;31(7):716-722. doi: 10.1080/09546634.2019.1607024. Epub 2019 Jun 19. PMID: 30998081.

Feás X, Estevinho LM, Salinero C, Vela P, Sainz MJ, Vázquez-Tato MP, Seijas JA. Triacylglyceride, antioxidant and antimicrobial features of virgin Camellia oleifera, C. reticulata and C. sasanqua Oils. Molecules. 2013 Apr 18;18(4):4573-87. doi: 10.3390/molecules18044573. PMID: 23599015; PMCID: PMC6270245.

European Commission, CosIng, Cosmetic Ingredients, retrieved 8 April 2024 from

Przybylska-Balcerek A, et al., Sambucus Nigra Extracts-Natural Antioxidants and Antimicrobial Compounds. Molecules. 2021 May 14;26(10):2910. doi: 10.3390/molecules26102910. PMID: 34068909; PMCID: PMC8156197.

Verma N, Chakrabarti R, Das RH, Gautam HK. Anti-inflammatory effects of shea butter through inhibition of iNOS, COX-2, and cytokines via the Nf-κB pathway in LPS-activated J774 macrophage cells. J Complement Integr Med. 2012 Jan 12;9:Article 4. doi: 10.1515/1553-3840.1574. PMID: 22499721.

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