Commonly known as “chicken skin”, “lichen pilaris” or “follicular keratosis”, keratosis pilaris is a genetic skin disorder that is characterized by small, acne-like bumps that might appear on cheeks, buttocks, thighs, legs or upper arms. These can be hard, dry or rough. Major reason of this disorder is the excess deposition of keratin protein in hair follicles. This skin ailment can occur in people of all age groups, but is more common in overweight women, particularly during pregnancy, childbirth, and puberty. It makes the skin dry, patchy, itchy and discolored. It often gets healed by itself with age and is non-contagious. There is no treatment available for this skin infection, but natural cures are very useful in providing relief from the symptoms. In this article, you will get to know some simple home remedies to get rid of keratosis pilaris.
Home Remedies for Keratosis Pilaris
Oatmeal helps soothe the dry, itchy, and flaky skin. Make a paste of ground oatmeal and water and apply it over the affected area. Leave it for 15 minutes and then wash off with cold water. This process must be repeated daily or at least thrice a week to alleviate the symptoms of keratosis pilaris.
- Alternatively, add oatmeal powder to your bathtub. Soak yourself in it. Stay in the bathtub for at least 15-20 minutes. Then bathe with the fresh water. This process must be repeated twice a week or as required. It will remove the dead skin cells as well as reduce the dryness, itchiness, and bumpiness of the skin.
2. Baking Soda
Baking soda works as an excellent exfoliant. It removes the dead skin cells and opens up the blocked pores. Make a paste of baking soda and water. Scrub this paste on your skin for a few minutes and then wash it off with cold water. This remedy must be used regularly to get rid of the annoying bumps resulted due to keratosis pilaris.
Take 2 tbsp each of granulated sugar and sour cream and mix them well. Apply it as a face mask, massaging a in circular motion. Regular application of this remedy will help treat keratosis pilaris.
- Alternatively, mix some sugar and olive oil and scrub it over the affected area. Leave it for 15-20 minutes and then wash it off with lukewarm water. It will moisturize the skin and reduce the uneven texture of the skin.
Apply yogurt directly over the affected area and let it dry. Wash it off after 15 minutes. Repeat this process twice daily for a few weeks to cure the infection completely. Yogurt has lactic acid which prevents the excess formation of keratin. It acts as a natural moisturizer for the skin.
5. Epsom Salt
Mix 1 cup of Epsom salt in bath water and soak yourself in it. Stay there for at least 20 minutes and then take a bath with fresh water. Pat yourself dry and apply some moisturizer.
- Alternatively, mix some Epsom salt and olive oil and scrub the affected area with this paste. Leave it for 15 minutes. Finally, wash off with cold water. This will prevent swelling, itching, and inflammation.
6. Olive Oil
Massage the affected skin with olive oil every night, before going to bed. The presence of vitamin E in olive oil will reduce the dryness of the skin.
- Alternatively, mix some olive oil, sugar and honey to make a natural scrub. Apply it to the skin in circular motions and leave it for 5-10 minutes. Then wash it off with lukewarm water. It will deep moisturize your skin.
7. Milk Bath
The lactic acid in milk provides nourishment to the skin and helps cure several dermal disorders. Add a cup of milk in the bathtub and have a bath with this water. This must be done on regular basis to fend off all skin-related problems, including keratosis pilaris.
Aspirin is a very effective treatment for keratosis pilaris. It treats redness, inflammation, and itching. Crush a few aspirin tablets and mix some water to form a smooth paste. Apply this paste to the affected area. Leave it for 15-20 minutes and then rinse it off with cold water.
9. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. It works well for treating keratosis pilaris. Mix white granulated sugar, brown sugar, honey, vanilla extract, and coconut oil. Apply this scrub in round circular motions to the affected area. Leave it for 5 minutes and then wash it off with lukewarm water. Regular application of the scrub will make the skin soft; reduce the itchiness, swelling, and bumpiness.
- Alternatively, mix coconut oil with apple cider vinegar and honey. Use it on the affected area and leave it for 15-20 minutes. Wash it off with cold water. Regular application of this remedy with help you get rid of all skin infections.
Occasionally, you can also mix grape seed oil to this mixture.
- Or else, apply some coconut oil to the affected area right after the bath when the skin is still moist. It will help retain the moisture.
- You can include coconut oil in your diet. Recommended dose is 2 tbsp per day.
10. Apple Cider Vinegar
Apply apple cider vinegar directly to the area affected by keratosis pilaris. Alternatively, mix some apple cider vinegar to your bathtub and take a bath with this water.
- Or else, you can also mix a tbsp of apple cider vinegar in 1 cup of water and drink it. It will help alleviate the symptoms of the ailment.
Carrots are helpful in removing the keratin deposits from the body and also prevent the excess production of keratin. Eat 2-3 carrots daily. Alternatively, drink a glassful of carrot juice, two times a day.
12. Sea Salt
Mix 1½ cups of almond oil or grape seed oil, 1 tbsp of grapefruit essential oil, and 1 cup of sea salt. Moisten your skin with some water and then scrub this paste on the skin. Leave it there for 15-20 minutes and then wash it off with lukewarm water. This procedure must be repeated once or twice a week.
13. Exfoliating Scrub
Make a paste by mixing baking soda, salt, milk, lemon juice, apple cider vinegar and water. Apply it over the affected area and then wash it off with lukewarm water. This remedy helps improve the texture of the skin; thus curing keratosis pilaris infection.
14. Oil Pulling
Oil pulling is a very simple but effective remedy for keratosis pilaris. Mix coconut oil, olive oil or sesame oil. Swish this mixture in your mouth for 15-20 minutes. Then, spit it out. This remedy must be followed daily for a few weeks until the symptoms alleviate completely.
Note – Use this remedy before the meal and brush your teeth later to remove the traces of oil.
Herbal Remedies for Keratosis Pilaris
15. Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil is an excellent keratosis pilaris home remedy as it helps clear the bumps of the skin and also provides necessary moisture to the skin. Massage some oil on the affected skin regularly for 15-20 days, to see the results.
16. Witch Hazel
Witch hazel is a natural treatment for keratosis pilaris. It helps cure bumps that are caused due to dry skin or hair removal. Crush witch hazel leaves along with some water to form a thick paste and apply it to the affected area. You can even mix some moisturizer in the paste, to speed up the healing process.
17. Milkweed (Euphorbia peplus)
A milky-colored juice is obtained on cutting the stem of the milkweed. Apply this sap to the affected skin, twice a day. This will help reduce the roughness of the skin in a few days. It is one of the best cures for keratosis pilaris.
18. Sea Buckthorn
Make use of oil of this herb or crush the leaves and make a paste out of it by adding some water. Apply it over the affected area and leave it for 5-10 minutes. Then wash it off with lukewarm water. This remedy is a superb keratosis pilaris treatment.
- Include fruits rich in vitamin A, C and E in your diet like papaya, green leafy vegetables, carrots, liver, eggs, strawberries, grapes, pumpkin, tomato, etc. Also include cold water fish (like salmon, tuna, and mackerel), fish oil, flaxseeds, walnuts, etc., as they are rich in omega-3 and 6 fatty acids and help heal keratosis pilaris fast.
- Apply antiseptic creams which contain alpha-hydroxy acids, glycolic acids, and lactic acid. It helps reduce the extra keratin from the skin.
- Have a walk in the morning sun.
- Keep the skin moisturized.
- Drink at least 8-10 glasses of water every day.
- Regularly wash the affected area with antiseptic soap and water.
- Make use of a gentle scrub, loofah or wash cloth to exfoliate the skin.
- Make use of soft washcloth or towel to pat dry your skin.
- Make use of the humidifier to add moisture to the air inside the home.
- Wear clean and sweat-free clothes. No traces of washing detergent must be left in the clothes.
- Do not expose yourself to extreme sunlight.
- Avoid going out in extreme dry or extreme cold weather.
- Avoid making use of lotions and soaps that contain sodium lauryl sulfate, parabens or dimethicone, and artificial fragrance.
- Do not take a shower with the extreme hot water as this might worsen the condition.
- Avoid scrubbing the skin with extreme pressure.
- Don’t scratch the bumps over the skin.