Effective treatment for keratosis pilaris can be hard to find. I struggled for years and finally figured out how to heal keratosis pilaris naturally. In this post I share the topical treatments, moisturizers, lotions, creams and scrubs that worked to help heal my keratosis pilaris in just 3 months.
How to heal keratosis pilaris naturally
Keratosis pilaris (also known as KP or chicken skin) can be so frustrating. I struggled with mine for years and only made it look worse by picking at it regularly. Effective treatment for keratosis pilaris can be hard to find and all the doctors I saw told me it would never go away. I tried so many treatments that just didn't work that I finally did my own research and learned how to treat my keratosis pilaris naturally. You can see from my before and after photos just how much my keratosis pilaris healed in only 3 months. In this post I am sharing the topical remedies I used to heal my keratosis pilaris including the scrubs, lotions and creams. I also made a number of diet changes that helped but in this post I will focus on the topical treatments I used. You will see that there are a few things that are key to healing keratosis pilaris: exfoliation, and non-toxic creams and lotions.
3 months after (you can still see the residual scarring):
The keys to healing keratosis pilaris
1. Treatment for keratosis pilaris: exfoliation
Exfoliation. I cannot say enough about this. Exfoliation can do wonders for your skin! How I didn't realize this earlier I do not know. But I am a total believer now.
Exfoliation is the process used to remove dead skin cells from the skin's surface. There are both mechanical and topical ways to exfoliate. I have been using both to help heal my KP.
There are a number of benefits to exfoliating your skin including:
- Increasing cell turnover
- Detoxifying the skin
- Getting rid of dead, dull skin cells
- Improving skin tone
- Killing bacteria and helping prevents breakouts/rashes
- Improving topical product penetration and treatment results
So how have I been exfoliating? First, I have been using dry brushing everyday, and second I have been using a scrub on my arms twice a week. I use this Lemongrass Sugar Scrub. It smells amazing and leaves my skin feeling so soft and smooth. But a little more about dry brushing since I know this is a new concept for many of you. Dry brushing is the process of rubbing your dry skin with a hard bristled brush. Sounds a bit crazy doesn't it? But there are so many benefits of doing this to your skin! So many in fact that I will have to do an entire post dedicated solely to dry brushing in the future. But in terms of healing keratosis pilaris there are a few ways it is beneficial:
- It sloughs off dead, dry skin to improve skin's appearance and allows moisturizer to penetrate more effectively
- It improves the movement of lymph fluid into the local lymph nodes to help remove waste products
In order to dry brush you first need to have the proper brush. One with a long handle, and firm bristles. I use this one made by Bernard Jensen. You can also find body brushes at most health food stores or spas (just be willing to pay a pretty penny at some of these places). I dry brush first thing in the morning before I shower, but you can do it any time of day. Simply start at your feet, and move the brush in vertical/upward movements over your skin. Slowly work your way up and over your whole body. Simple as that. It only takes a few minutes and your skin should feel smoother immediately. The first time you do this you may not like the sensation of those hard bristles on your skin (I sure didn't) but once you do it a few times you actually start to enjoy feeling.
2. Treatment for keratosis pilaris: moisturization
Proper skin moisturization is key to healing your KP. But you need to make sure you are moisturizing with the right products, products that are safe and toxin-free. Because remember, your skin has the largest surface area of any organ in your body and most of what you put on your skin gets absorbed into your bloodstream. So if you are putting toxins on your skin, they are getting into your body. And instead of helping heal your skin, your body will have to fight off those toxins, ultimately doing more harm than good.
There are a few key products I have been using to moisturize. The first is jojoba oil, and the second is this Cleansing Balm. Both of these products are extremely moisturizing, without being greasy!
Jojoba oil is a great choice for natural skin care because it is the only oil that resembles human sebum (an oily substance that is naturally produced by your skin), which means it doesn't clog your pores. It not only moisturizes, but also has anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, all of which are helpful in healing KP (and many other skin conditions). I add lavender essential oil (which also promotes skin healing) to my jojoba oil and apply this to my arms after I shower. If I'm at home I will also apply it throughout the day. I notice a difference in my skin if I miss just one or two days of this. It's that powerful.
The other product I cannot say enough about is this Cleansing Balm. It has also been key in helping heal my KP. I apply it every night before I go to sleep for some deeply nourishing and healing hydration.
That's it! Those are the external steps I have been using to heal my KP. It really hasn't been that hard, and I wish that I had started this mission sooner. Hindsight is always 20/20 isn't it?
Be sure to follow me on Instagram, Pinterest and Facebook too!
And don't forget to grab your copy of my FREE guide, Healing Keratosis Pilaris from the Inside Out which outlines the 5 step process that I used to completely heal my Keratosis Pilaris for good!
You will also like:
- How to heal keratosis pilaris with diet
- How to heal your KP from the inside out
- Deodorant health risks
- How to choose a safe sunscreen
- How I healed my acne naturally
- What is the bean protocol?
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Healing keratosis pilaris will not happen overnight. I found it took me 3 months to heal mine, and even more time to help the scars fade. I used a combination of diet changes plus topical treatments including both exfoliation and non-toxic skincare products to help heal mine completely.
I have personally found that certain foods including gluten and dairy can be triggers for keratosis pilaris, as well as stress, skin picking and skincare products made with unhealthy or unsafe ingredients.
There are a number of things you can do at home to help treat your keratosis pilaris including:
1. Changing your diet
2. Exfoliating regularly
3. Moisturizing with non-toxic skincare products
4. Avoid picking
5. Reduce stress
I am curious about dry brushing! I tried to buy a brush & some lavender oil off amazon.com, but it's being super annoying. Sometimes amazon drives me crazy. Anyway, I notice my arms are so much better when I'm more mindful of how I'm eating & my omega ratios are good. My psoriasis is also significantly better, which is so awesome!
I stopped eating gluten and high fructose corn syrup and mine went away, so did my migraines.
Amazon can be totally annoying hey? what's with that! And mine is definitely worse with certain foods too. Nuts seem to be a big trigger for me sadly since I love them.
Heidi you're right diet is so important for skin! I'm actually going to do a whole post on this topic in the future since food is definitely medicine when it comes to skin care!
Gluten does cause KP according to all the new studies!
I completely agree! gluten can cause a whole laundry list of skin problems... acne, eczema, psoriasis... the list goes on and on! diet is so key to healing so many things! thanks for posting 🙂
I'm definitely going to try the brush thing. And the oil. I'm 16, I've had KP for 6 years now. I've tried a hundred different creams my dermatologist prescribed me. None of them really seemed to work. The one thing that helped was bathing in saltwater. Didn't heal it but it helped. I've also tried light/sun therapy. Also didn't work. It really affected my self confidence.And I'm tired of people asking me what's wrong with my arms.Thanks for the tips, I really hope it works. 🙂
Oh I hear your pain! Honestly I was so embarrassed to wear short sleeves that I rarely did. I really hope some of these tricks work for you. I had honestly almost given up! I would also look at changing your diet if you haven't yet. Gluten in particular can definitely trigger KP (along with many other foods). Good luck!
The biggest factor in getting rid of my KP was giving up dairy. I was intolerant of dairy and soya when I was a baby, then grew out of it but both allergies/intolerances resurfaced when I hit my 20s. Giving them both up I immediately noticed a difference in the KP on my arms. If I stay off the dairy, exfoliate and moisturise regularly, drink plenty of water and don't eat too much bread my arms are as smooth as a baby's bum 🙂
It's amazing how big a factor certain foods can be in skin conditions. Dairy and gluten are the first things I tell people to eliminate for any kind of skin issue. So glad you found a solution! xoxo
When I read this story I realized just how similar it was to my condition. I suffered from KP for over 15 years and I was desperate to find anything that would help me. I hated to wear tank tops because I got so self-conscious that people stared at my arms all the time.Even my friends would make comments like, "Is that leprosy on your arms?"I didn't want to go out so I stayed home and got really depressed.Doctors and medications were of little help and even made my keratosis worse many times. Then I came some simple natural remedies that finally made the bumps, the redness, and the picking disappear for good.In fact, you might want to check out this article, it really helped me a lot:http://www.journalofnaturalhealth.com/keratosisHope it helps anyone reading this!
Hello. Thanks for sharing! I was just wondering about the portions for the jojoba oil/lavender essential oil mix? Do you just mix a few drops at a time or...?
Oh good question. To be honest I never actually measure. I just dump a bunch of drops into my jojoba oil bottle and leave it at that. I am guessing I add about 20-30 drops but this will also partly depend on the type of lavender essential oil you are using. Some brands are more potent than others. I would say as long as it smells like lavender when you put it on you have enough!
The link for the cleansing balm no longer works. I’m trying to help my 13 year old son with his increasingly severe kp. Can you name the balm or provide a new link?
Oh thanks for letting me know! I just fixed the link!
Or just use this: https://www.beautycounter.com/en-ca/erincarter?goto=/product/counter-plus-lotus-glow-cleansing-balm
I hope it helps! If you have other questions please let me know.
Do you just rub the cleansing oil in or do you wipe the skin with it and then wipe it off?
Oh yes I just use the cleansing balm like a cream. Just rub it on and then leave it. It will absorb overnight.
Thank you Erin l too suffer with KP . It's distressing and embarrassing. I have it on about 60 percent of my body. Went to see a dermatologist and was told as l am Irish it's Celtic genetics and there was no cure. In winter l cover up as with our wet and cold climate it can be really noticeable and shocking. My question is about the cleansing balm. I looked at the product you use are there any cheaper alternatives but that are just as effective
I was told the same thing by my dermatologist... that it was genetic and it wouldn't ever go away. I'm so glad I didn't listen!
And I don't know of any other products that would be similar to the cleansing balm that are cheaper... I know of other beauty balms that are even more expensive (beauty balms tend to cost more since they are very concentrated) but that Beautycounter one lasts me about 6 months because a little goes a long way so to me it's more than worth it.
Where do I buy the cleaning balm
I'm so sorry for the delay Roberta. You can get the cleansing balm through this link:
If you use the code CHANGEBEAUTY10 until the end of December you can get 10% off. If you have any questions just let me know!
Just a quick question. So do we apply the lavender oil directly after applying jojoba oil and dry brushing?
No I put the lavender oil in the jojoba oil! So it's all mixed together 🙂
Thanks for the advice. I feel bad I just picked at my skin and I’m so frustrated I keep touching it. I want it to go away so bad because I want to look good in summer dresses. I will be trying out your methods and seeing how it goes.
Hi Erin, thanks a lot for sharing your experience with us.
May I know if you used the Cleansing Balm on your arms as well? because I think this product means to be for face.
Yes I use it on my arms 🙂 I also use it as a hand cream sometimes if my hands are really dry. Even though it's a facial product it's fine to use on other parts of the body.
Thanks for reading!