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Scrub a Dub: Psoriasis Shower Routines


There’s no such thing as a “quick shower” when you have psoriasis! If you struggle with psoriasis, there’s a good chance that bathing is not an easy experience. Gone are the days of taking a “quick shower,” and I cannot fathom ever showering at the gym (think of all the products I would need to bring with me!). I’ve never been considered high maintenance, but you wouldn’t know it given how particular I am when it comes to my tub routine.

Towels and shower mats

My towels are always cotton and I have to swap them out frequently because musty towels can pass on infections, and we psoriasis folk are already at increased risk for that. I also prefer big fluffy towels that won’t irritate my skin (at least, this is what I tell my Husband while shopping in fancy bath departments). I’m also a big proponent of using shower mats that provide good traction. Taking a bath/shower with any coconut oil or essential oil product can lead to a slippery situation, so best to be careful.

All the stuff I use IN the shower

Some people don’t pack shampoo/soap when traveling because they survive off the tiny bottles given out at the hotel. I am not one of these people. I have a special sulfate-free shampoo so my scalp doesn’t get irritated, my coal tar shampoo with menthol to keep my scalp psoriasis at bay, and scent-free coconut oil body wash that doesn’t irritate my skin. I may also have one of my ever-rotating prescription shampoos. This is a far cry from the generic soap my Husband uses for everything.

It takes forever

Oh yes, and it takes forever. Just my coal tar application alone takes 10 minutes (apply to scalp… wait for 8 minutes… stumble blindly around if god forbid it ever gets into your eyes). So yes, I’m in the shower for an inordinate amount of time. The shower temperature also has to be just right. While I used to love hot showers, hot water is very drying to skin, and I don’t need any more of that in my life. Throw in any type of shaving and I basically need to take a half day off work (a quarter for the shower and a quarter for the trip to the ER to get a blood transfusion).

All the stuff I use AFTER the shower

Oh bliss, the water is off, it must be over, right? Ah no. Now comes the barrage of lotions and oils to keep me from flaking like a snow globe all day. I first do an entire application of coconut oil, and then I use my favorite body butter that I buy in 2L tubs off the internet (yes, you read that correctly). I find that this is the absolute best way to lock in moisture for my skin, and it keeps it mostly soft and hydrated for the whole day. This is not a quick procedure though…

Again, It takes forever

I usually park myself in front of Netflix before starting my lotion routine, because I might as well catch up on Suits while I grease up (this also explains why my keyboard is always covered in smears of lotion).
This fully explains why I bend over backwards to avoid showering at a friend’s house, at the gym, or anywhere where I don’t have my arsenal of products and a place to sit naked and watch Netflix.

What about you, how long does your shower/bath routine take? Leave a comment and let us know!

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.


  • kldearman
    7 months ago

    At least a good 2-4 hours for me. Mine has gotten so bad lately from anxiety and stress, that I’m doing at least 2 hours a day, but more often than not it’s at least 3. Most people don’t understand why. My boyfriend, for example, get’s upset because he’s always waiting on me to get ready. Even if it’s just Netflix, him, and me….2 hours. If we go out anywhere, that just doubles or triples the time, because my anxiety makes me take even longer. Almost always late to whatever we do. It upsets him, and others, but who can blame them? I went from getting ready, makeup, hair, and all in 30 min without a shower, an hour with, to minimum 2 hours. Even though it’s been a year since I’ve adopted an increased habit of bathing, I still don’t adequately plan enough time. Always running out the door while my concealer/foundation bakes in so all of my patches are at least less red, so I don’t have people looking at me with caution, or asking if what I have is contagious. 🙁

  • kldearman
    7 months ago

    Before, I had a few patches here and there. Still was careful about the products I used, but I stuck to showering every other day, and only using medicated, or other extra, moisturizing procedures if the patches intensified, or multiplied.

  • PallaveeTrehan
    7 months ago

    I hear you and I know that all of this must be a huge adjustment from your previous routine. Have you found anything that helps manage your anxiety?
    Since you mentioned moisturizing, we would love for you to share some of your favorite go-to products on our forum:
    Please keep us posted, we are always here for you!

  • nicki
    1 year ago

    Yes I know the dreaded routine of showering and lathering up. What kind of lotion do you buy that comes in such a big tub?

  • VickiN moderator author
    1 year ago

    @nicki, I bought the tubs from a company from Sattva Pure. Unfortunately they have closed down in the last few months! I still have about 1L left in my tub, but I have to start searching for a new product 🙁
    -Victoria, Community Moderator

  • PallaveeTrehan
    7 months ago

    @vickin @nicki We would love for you to share some of your favorite go-to products on our forum: I really love all of Sebamed’s products. I am curious to see what our community favorites are!

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