Keratosis Pilaris – How to Soothe & Remove

Keratosis pilaris doesn’t sound like much fun, but it’s a harmless condition, resulting from build-up of keratin, a protein found in skin.  Symptoms of keratosis pilaris include dry and rough patches on the skin, with painless tiny bumps in the affected area. This creates the formation of rough-feeling bumps on the surface of the skin caused by clogged hair follicles. It is common and often referred to as chicken skin because of the rough texture that forms in areas like the arms and cheeks. These bumps are technically called “follicular keratotic papules.” They can affect any skin surface where hair grows. You may find the rough patches on  the upper arms, thighs, cheeks, or buttocks area of your body.  With proper care, you can rid your skin of this often-times embarrassing condition.

What does it look like? The bumps are usually white, but sometimes appear red, or a reddish-pink color may develop around the bumps. The number of bumps in one location varies anywhere from 10, 40, or up to 100 bumps in one area.

Because dead, dry skin causes keratosis pilaris, it can become worse in the winter months or when the skin dries out in low-humidity weather. There is no cure for keratosis pilaris, but you can treat the symptoms with ongoing maintenance. Conventional forms of treatment involve using moisturizing skin care products. 

Natural Remedies for Keratosis Pilaris

Exfoliant creams are used to loosen and remove dead skin cells. 

Coconut oil may be used to moisturize dry skin and exfoliate dead skin cells. It also has anti-inflammatory properties, which make it a great natural remedy for inflamed keratosis pilaris.

You may either apply coconut oil on the affected skin several times a day to keep it moisturized or mix it with granulated sugar to create an exfoliating scrub.

Baking soda helps exfoliate dead skin cells and reduce the rough bumps on your skin.

Make a paste by mixing two teaspoons of baking soda with a small amount of water. Gently rub the paste on your skin in a circular motion. Repeat this procedure a few times per week for better results.

Apple cider vinegar (ACV) is known to alleviate a variety of skin ailments, thanks to its astringent properties.

You can apply it directly on areas affected by keratosis pilaris. You may also dilute it with water if you think that pure ACV is too strong for your skin. Be sure to leave it on for a few minutes before washing it off.

Oatmeal can help soothe dry and itchy skin. Rub it onto your skin for 10 to 15 minutes to alleviate keratosis pilaris.

In addition to the natural products mentioned above, you may also use tea tree oil to reduce the severity of keratosis pilaris. Also remember to:

  • Keep your skin clean 
  • Use warm water to bath
  • Avoid harsh soaps
  • Keep the skin moist
  • Avoid wearing tight fitting clothes
  • Do not scratch the affected area

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