Keratosis pilaris is a rather common condition that affects the skin and causes the formation of tiny hard bumps. This makes one’s skin feel rough, a bit like sandpaper.The bumps usually have a light color compared to the rest of the skin complexion, and will often form on the thighs, arms and backside.
Depending on the extent of the bumps formed, the condition may be accompanied redness, itching and swelling. Despite these symptoms, the condition is pretty much harmless. It is common in kids and teens and often disappears on its own.
The condition is caused by the accumulation of keratin, the protein that is responsible for the formation of the skin’s proteins. Once this protein builds up on the skin, it causes the blockage of the hair follicle.
This in turn, results in the formation of the bumps that are characteristic of the condition. The precise trigger of keratin accumulation remains unknown to date. Since the condition is pretty harmless, you may not need to see a dermatologist unless you are concerned about other underlying conditions. The good news is that there are several natural remedies that you can use to manage keratosis pilaris.
1. Pure Coconut Oil:
Time Required: 30 Min
What You Need: Pure virgin coconut oil. The following are optional: 1 Teaspoon of sugar, 2 teaspoons of honey and warm water.
Pure coconut oil is effective for the treatment of keratosis pilaris, thanks to its moisturizing properties. This remedy helps eliminate the dryness and redness that accompanies the tiny skin bumps found on the skin. The oil also has additional benefits that enhance the health of the skin and ward off infections. You may use the oil on its own or prepare a homemade scrub that helps exfoliate the skin using ingredients indicated in the list of optional requirements.
- Simply slather a generous amount of the coconut oil on the part of the skin that is affected.
- Massage gently to allow the oil to get absorbed. Use this remedy daily for best results.
- Alternatively, prepare the homemade scrub following the directions indicated below.
i) Mix the sugar, coconut oil and honey in a bowl until you have a gritty paste.
ii) Apply this paste on the skin and rub it to exfoliate.
iii) Allow the paste to remain on the skin for half an hour or so.
iv) Rinse the scrub off using warm water and proceed to apply an appropriate skin moisturizer.
v) Use this remedy at least thrice weekly.
2. Epsom Salt:
Time Required: 30 Min
What You Need: 1 Cup of Epsom salt, warm water and olive oil (optional).
Epsom salts are a beneficial remedy for the treatment of keratosis pilaris. The combination of Magnesium and sulfates salts help soften the bumpy formations on the skin while soothing the itching sensation. The salts are also ideal for the removal of toxins and go a long way in reliving any inflammation present. Note, however, that the salts are not recommended for use by those suffering from hypertension, heart problems as well as diabetes as the salts can aggravate the conditions and interfere with the course of treatment.
- Place the cup of Epsom salt in the bath tub and run the warm water.
- Mix the salts well to dissolve completely and then proceed to soak in the water for 20 minutes.
- Dry the skin well and apply an ideal moisturizer. Use this remedy thrice weekly.
- Alternatively, use the Epsom salts and the olive oil as indicated below.
i) Mix the salts with 1 tablespoon of olive oil to prepare a scrub.
ii) Apply the scrub on the skin and massage gently.
iii) Rinse the scrub off. Use this remedy twice weekly.
Time Required: 30 Min
What You Need: 1/3 Cup of oatmeal,coffee grinder, warm bath water and skin moisturizer.
If you are looking for a remedy to treat keratosis pilaris, look no further than oatmeal. Both gentle and soothing on the skin, oatmeal makes for a reliable solution to the itchiness that sometimes accompanies this skin condition. Regular use of oatmeal also helps reduce the accumulation of the skin cells that give rise to the formation of the bumps on the skin. Oatmeal also has additional benefits such as exfoliating the skin.
- Place the oatmeal in the coffee grinder in order to get a fine powder prior to the use of this remedy.
- Add the fine oatmeal powder to warm bath water and soak in it for some 20-30 minutes.
- Dry and apply your ideal skin moisturizer. Use this remedy twice daily.
- Alternatively, prepare a mask by mixing the oatmeal with some warm water. You will then apply the paste on the skin and allow it to dry for 20 minutes. Rinse the skin and moisturize. Use this remedy twice weekly for best results.
4. Sour Cream of Yogurt:
Time Required: 30 Min
What You Need: 1 Tablespoon of white sugar, 2 tablespoons of sour cream/ yogurt and warm water to rinse.
Sour cream and yogurt have one thing in common: they are both rich in lactic acid, and this is what makes them a great remedy for the natural treatment of keratosis pilaris over a period of time. The presence of lactic acid in these natural solutions is known to eliminate the accumulated keratin while preserving the skin’s moisturization.
The process of exfoliation, done regularly, is an excellent way to keep the condition in check. In fact, a good number of skin care products contain lactic acid as one of the ingredients for the same reason. Sugar is added to enhance the remedy’s efficiency through the action of scrubbing. In the absence of the cream or yogurt, you may use buttermilk as it has similar ingredients.
- Place the white sugar in a shallow bowl and mix with your preferred remedy, either sour cream or yogurt.
- Scoop some of the homemade scrub and apply it on the affected part of the skin.
- Massage the scrub for exfoliation purposes as these helps eliminate the keratin buildup.
- Let the mixture dry for a few minutes before rinsing using warm water.
- Use this remedy daily for best results.
5. Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV):
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: 1/2 Cup each of Apple cider vinegar and water as well as cotton wool. Coconut oil (optional).
Apple cider vinegar is one of the most versatile home remedies available. Its astringent healing properties make it especially effective for the natural treatment of keratosis pilaris. This is because the ACV helps unblock the clogged skin pores, eventually eliminating the keratin buildup that characterizes the condition. Overall, ACV is also great for healthy glowing skin, and is one you could consider adding to your usual skin care routine. You may add coconut oil to this remedy for its moisturization properties.
- Mix the ACV and the water in equal ratios. This is done to prevent irritation of the skin for those with sensitive skin.
- Soak the cotton wool in the dilute solution and apply it on the affected skin.
- Use this remedy daily until you are content with the progress made.
- If you opt to add coconut oil to the remedy, simply add the oil to the Apple cider vinegar and apply in the same way as you would the dilute ACV.
NOTE: If you experience skin irritation with this remedy, it is advisable to discontinue its use immediately.
6. Vitamin E Oil Capsules:
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: Vitamin E oil capsules or store -bought Vitamin E and cotton wool.
Vitamin E is one of the leading nutrients required or healthy skin. It is little wonder that this is one of the most beneficial natural remedies used to manage keratosis pilaris. Vitamin E not only smooths the skin, it also has excellent moisturizing properties that prevent skin dryness. Additionally, the vitamin is used for skin cell repair, in effect getting rid of the rough bump-like formations on the skin. You may use store-bought oil or puncture capsules to get the oil. This remedy is only intended for topical use.
- Place a few drops of the oil on the cotton wool and use this to apply on the affected part of the skin.
- If you cannot get the oil, simply puncture the capsules and soak the cotton wool using the oil retrieved from the capsule.
- Use the oil at least once weekly for best results.
7. Olive Oil:
Time Required: 5 Min
What You Need: Extra virgin olive oil. 1 tablespoon each of sugar and honey as well as warm water (optional).
The benefits of extra virgin oil make it one of the top home remedies for a number of skin conditions, and one of these is keratosis pilaris. This remedy, just like coconut oil, is packed with moisturizing properties that enrich the skin. The olive oil is also rich in Vitamin E, providing a wholesome solution to managing the bumps that form as a result of keratin buildup.
- Simply apply the olive oil on the affected part of the skin, preferably after a warm bath as the skin pores are opened and the oil easily absorbed.
- The other option involves preparing skin scrub as outlined below:
i) Begin by mixing the oil with the honey and sugar to get the coarse texture of this remedy.
ii) Rub the scrub on your skin for about 5 minutes.
iii) Rinse it off and follow this through with skin moisturizing. Use this remedy twice weekly.
8. Additional Tips for the Management of Keratosis Pilaris:
- Avoid picking at the bumps as this may cause infections and delay healing.
- Always moisturize the skin after coming into contact with water. In the same breath, use sunscreen while in the outdoors.
- Opt for a warm or cool shower as opposed to a hot shower as this strips the skin dry.
- Do not take long hot baths or showers as this has been shown to dry the skin considerably.
- Lastly, take a balanced diet to promote healthy skin.
Keratosis pilaris is largely harmless and does not pose any particular challenges save for their appearance. Regular use of these remedies helps manage the condition with ease. If you have any concerns, do not be afraid to seek the opinion of a dermatologist.