Skin Care

Psoriasis makes your skin sensitive, so practising proper skin care is an important way of helping to prevent or reduce symptoms of the disease. Proper skin care can also help protect your skin from infections and injuries that may lead to challenging flares.

1. Keep things gentle

Stay away from harsh skin products. Use gentle soaps, and try to avoid strong or scented soaps. Look for creams that don’t contain alcohol, which may dry out your skin. Do your best to prevent injuries to your skin.

Scratching at your skin and picking at your cuts and scrapes is a no-no. Injuries to your skin can cause psoriasis to show up anywhere on your body. Trim your nails carefully, and avoid wearing tight shoes, clothing, watchbands, and hats that can irritate your skin.

Do what you can to avoid cold climates. Cold, dry air can make your symptoms worse.

2.   Keep skin moist

Use creams and lotions that moisturize effectively. Take a bath or soak in water once a day. Before drying off completely, apply moisturizers to help seal in the moisture so that your skin doesn’t get drier. Adding oils to your bath water may also help, but be careful not to slip getting out. Use a humidifier to add moisture to the air at home. Consider wrapping areas of your skin with a tensor bandage, fabric, or plastic to keep skin moist right after applying creams or lotions (this is called occlusion therapy).

3. Keep up with your medications

Remember to apply topical treatments and to take medications as instructed. Prepare your skin for topical medicines. If you gently soften and remove psoriasis crusts and scales from your skin before applying these agents, you can help your skin absorb the products better. Try rubbing cream gently into the affected areas to soften them before carefully peeling off what skin you can.

Extracted from: Living with Psoriasis,  Your Guide to Living Well After a Psoriasis Diagnosis. Canadian Association of Psoriasis Patients, July 2015
Reviewed by: Sabrina Ribau
Medically Reviewed:  by Dr. Yvette Miller Monthrope, April 2021