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14 Natural and Home Remedies for Psoriasis

Moisturize often, take oatmeal baths, use Epsom salts and follow a healthy diet to help reduce your symptoms

Person in towel in front of bathtub, with shelves of lotions, holding jar of moisturizer, applying to face

Psoriasis can present a number of different challenges for those who have the condition. From the itchiness of the dry, cracked and scaly patches of skin to the occasional pain, those with psoriasis can always use some relief.


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Whether you experience psoriasis frequently or only occasionally, it’s especially good to know the best ways to ease those symptoms. All the better if you can do it without having to schedule a doctor’s appointment.

There isn’t a cure for psoriasis, but there are ways to manage symptoms and provide relief.

Certified nurse practitioner Leah Szemon, CNP, shares the best home remedies for psoriasis.

Home remedies for psoriasis

Looking for some home remedies or natural remedies for psoriasis?

When it comes to psoriasis, the first place to start is talking to your healthcare provider. Not every home remedy or natural psoriasis treatment works the same for everyone. Your doctor will be able to help you come up with a psoriasis home treatment plan that’s right for you and your specific condition.

Odds are, some of the suggestions you receive may include one of these.


Moisturizing, especially after bathing, is vital. But Szemon says to look for an option that’s free of fragrance, dye and harsh chemicals — all of which can cause irritation.

“When choosing a moisturizer, look for a thicker cream or ointment for winter months when skin tends to be drier, and a lighter cream for the summer months,” says Szemon. “Moisturizing while you’re still damp from a shower or bath, then drying off helps moisturizers absorb better and doesn’t leave you feeling greasy.”

Moisturizing cleanser

Avoid harsh soaps. Instead opt for over-the-counter moisturizing cleansers like Vanicream™, CeraVe® and Cetaphil®, which target two psoriasis symptoms: dryness and itchiness.

“These products help soften some of the scaly skin and provide hydration to the skin, potentially limiting some of the itching,” explains Szemon.

These options also typically lack fragrances and other ingredients that can further irritate your skin.


Oatmeal baths

Szemon recommends oatmeal baths as a way of finding temporary relief from itching, dryness and flaking skin.

Of course, we’re not talking about the food type of oatmeal but rather, what’s called colloidal oatmeal, a finely ground version that dissolves in your bath or that you find in lotions and soaps. It’s often used for other skin conditions like eczema.

“In a recent study in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, topically applied colloidal oatmeal was found to improve symptoms in 96% of study participants with psoriasis,” shares Szemon. “You can apply it as a paste, purchase skin products that already include it or take a colloidal oatmeal bath to reduce redness and itching.”

Epsom salt

Like oatmeal baths, a warm bath with Epsom salt can help relieve inflammation and remove those flaky scales from your skin.

While there’s not a lot of scientific data on the topic, the common theory is that the magnesium in the salt aids that relief.

Coal tar

An older remedy, coal tar comes in multiple forms, including shampoo, topical ointment and soap.

“It calms down the inflammation and works well to help with itching caused by psoriasis which can help bring relief,” says Szemon.

Just be wary that it can be kind of greasy and can lead to staining of clothes or skin. As with all creams and topical ointments, you can prevent staining by wrapping the applied area in plastic wrap.

“Talk to a dermatologist before your do,” advises Szemon. “It should be safe for adults, but I don’t recommend it for children.”

Salicylic acid cleansers

Like topical cleansers, salicylic acid cleansers are often used to treat acne and blackheads. When used three times a week, they can break down the outer layers of the skin and can decrease the thickness of psoriatic plaques. They also provide anti-inflammation relief.

“One caveat with coal tar and salicylic acid cleansers is that they can also irritate skin for some people,” notes Szemon. “We often recommend talking to your healthcare provider first and trying it on a small, specific area of skin rather than a large area to see what your reaction is.”


Aloe vera

You’ve probably used aloe vera gel before on your sunburned skin. But some research shows that aloe vera may reduce redness and scaling from psoriasis. Look for a cream or gel that contains at least 0.5% of aloe vera.

“Aloe vera can help with skin hydration but would need to be used regularly for this to be a benefit,” says Szemon. “Aloe vera has some anti-inflammatory properties, which may provide some relief. More studies are needed to determine if this is beneficial.”

Apple cider vinegar

Thanks to its antimicrobial and antioxidant properties some people use apple cider vinegar to soothe their scalp psoriasis. A dilution of apple cider vinegar with equal parts of water cuts down on the burning sensation.

But Szemon says that there’s no evidence that this method works. And furthermore, using apple cider vinegar on broken or cracked skin can cause damage.


Turmeric has been a trendy spice touted for its antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties that reduce inflammation in your body.

When it comes to psoriasis, research shows that turmeric (or more specifically, the active ingredient in turmeric called curcumin) may help minimize psoriasis flare-ups.

“Research has identified turmeric’s ability to alter tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF) cytokine expression, which can help in minimizing psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis flares for some,” shares Szemon. “You can take turmeric concentrated in pill or supplement form. Look for a supplement with curcumin and black pepper for better absorption. Make sure you discuss adding one of these supplements with your healthcare provider before starting.”

Oregon grape

Research shows that this antimicrobial herb may treat mild to moderate psoriasis and may even improve symptoms. Oregon grape can be found in topical treatments such as ointments or creams.

“There haven’t been studies conducted to evaluate the efficacy and safety at different topical dosages. The 10% cream has been studied and seems to be beneficial without major side effects; however, additional studies are needed,” stresses Szemon. “Oral Oregon grape hasn’t been studied and, therefore, isn’t recommended.”

Cortisone and hydrocortisone

Again, Szemon notes that it’s all about soothing inflammation, and cortisone and hydrocortisone creams do just that.

“It can be beneficial to removing some of the redness and scaly skin we see with psoriasis,” she says.



Whether using a specific device or getting some sunlight, light therapy is a verified way to improve your psoriasis conditions. But light therapy isn’t used very much anymore not because it’s been disproven.

“We’ve seen so many advances in some of these other treatments that it’s fallen out of favor,” clarifies Szemon.

Phototherapy for psoriasis isn’t the most convenient approach on your own, either, as the devices used for such treatment are essentially medical-grade tanning beds. Getting regular sunlight can also help clear up psoriasis but it comes with a hitch.

“Phototherapy is much different from just being in the sun,” she continues.

A healthy amount of sunlight can help, but you never want to overdo it.

“We don’t want people spending so much time out in the sunshine just to clear up psoriasis that they put themselves at risk for sunburns or skin cancers,” she says. “Especially since we have other effective ways to treat it that don’t include those risks.”

Meditation and yoga

Emotional stress is one of many triggers that can lead to a psoriasis flare-up. Practicing meditation and yoga may help manage your stress, which can help reduce your psoriasis symptoms.

“Yoga can be beneficial for people with psoriatic arthritis as it can help with joint pain and improve range of motion,” says Szemon. “Stress can trigger a psoriasis flare and a psoriasis flare can cause stress. Managing stress is difficult for all of us, take time for yourself, exercise and even use meditation. If you’re struggling with stress, reach out for help and talk with your healthcare provider.”

A better diet

As with so many other conditions, a healthy diet can go a long way to helping ease some of the symptoms of psoriasis.

“There is that association between psoriasis and conditions like heart disease, high blood pressure and high cholesterol,” says Szemon. “So, there’s a need to focus on diets that are generally healthy.”

Some tips for a better diet include:


“Having a healthier diet and exercise may not completely clear up your psoriasis, but it’s going to help keep it from getting worse,” she adds.

Home remedies you should skip

You may have heard of some popular home remedies such as using capsaicin, tea tree oil and probiotics, but Szemon says that more research is needed to show whether these options truly help with psoriasis and its symptoms.

“The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) doesn’t regulate supplements and few of these treatments have been studied. Those that have been studied were tested on small numbers of people, so we don’t know how well these treatments work,” warns Szemon. “The American Academy of Dermatology recommends checking with your dermatologist before trying these treatments.”

Bottom line?

Living with psoriasis can be frustrating, especially when you have a flare-up. Having some home remedies or natural ways to treat psoriasis can help you manage your condition. And it’s important that you talk to your healthcare provider about your symptoms.

“Using natural treatment options when used in conjunction with traditional treatment options can be beneficial,” says Szemon. “Make sure to discuss these options with your healthcare provider before implementing them. Herbal remedies interact with some medications and can cause problems.

“If you’re pregnant, breastfeeding (chestfeeding) or have preexisting medical conditions, you shouldn’t take herbal supplements without discussing with your provider.”

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