Top 10 Home Remedies and Herbs for Psoriasis, Cracked Skin And Other Skin Conditions

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Top 10 Herbal Home Remedies For Psoriasis, Cracked Skin and Other Skin ConditionsPhoto – © hriana –

The word Psoriasis comes literally means “to be itchy or to have an itch” – which perfectly describes this chronic skin condition. People affected by psoriasis experience extremely dry, flaky, and itchy skin. This is caused by the formation of extra skin cells on top of the epidermis, causing the skin to become thick and almost scaly in nature. Psoriasis is regarded by conventional medicine as a lifelong condition with no absolute cure, however, home remedies and herbs may provide some valuable benefits…

Note – don’t use essential oils undiluted. A few drops in a spoonful of base oil/carrier oil is a good rule of thumb. Examples of base oils include coconut oil, almond oil, and sunflower seed oil.

1. Calendula: The Calendula plant or pot marigold is not only a beautiful flower, it is also an amazing skin care ingredient. Korean skin care has been incorporating this popular ingredient to creams and lotions because of its firming and hydrating properties [1] – as well as its ability to prevent skin damage caused by the environment, aging, and weather changes. [2]

2. Aloe Vera: Aloe is a favorite home remedy for burns, sunburn and insect bites, especially during the summer, but it is also one of the gentlest ingredients you can use for psoriasis. While a little bit of sunlight is recommended to help skin maintain its normal cell turnover rate and moisture levels, the sun’s rays can cause greater damage. Aloe is a great way to keep your dry skin moisturized as well as protected from UVB-damage. [3] Aloe vera specifically is able to keep skin hydrated, according to a 2014 study, compared to other aloe species. [4] Please always seek medical attention for serious burns though.

3. Peppermint: Because of peppermint’s cooling sensation, it is a very effective remedy for relieving itching. It is able to decrease the skin’s temperature, causing the cooling effect and relieving any discomfort caused by dryness. Use peppermint essential oil in moderation to prevent damage to already irritated skin. [5] A simple method is to add a drop or two of peppermint essential oil to a small spoonful of coconut oil and mix it in. The scent alone can even promote rest and relaxation as well. [6]

4. Chamomile: Popularly used as a tea for rest and relaxation, chamomile is also an effective skin care ingredient for psoriasis. A 2011 study revealed that German chamomile could relieve itching and inflammation when applied twice a day on skin lesions. [7] Chamomile oil can even relieve the symptoms of atopic dermatitis by regulating the bodies’ immune response system to allergens—this is important for people affected with psoriasis whose skin immunity is altered and sensitivity is increased. [8]

5. Sunflower Seed Oil: Sunflower seed oil (base oil) was studied and discovered to improve the health of the skin barrier, promoting elasticity and integrity and improving overall hydration of the skin. It is an excellent alternative to the more expensive moisturizing oils readily available in the market without compromising on the oil’s effectiveness to rehydrate the skin. [9]

6. Licorice: Licorice – not the candy, the plant! – has great potential for alleviating the symptoms of psoriasis. In a 2013 study, licorice extract was used on a dry, itchy, and inflamed scalp – similar symptoms to psoriasis – and was able to improve skin moisture and reduce itching and dryness. The licorice tonic was able to normalize the skin’s lipids, improving the hydration and texture of the scalp. [10]

7. Tea Tree Oil: Because dry and cracked skin caused by psoriasis is prone to wounds and infections, using tea tree essential oil can be beneficial in keeping skin bacteria-free. Tea tree extract is a natural antibiotic that can fight bacteria, viral, fungal, and protozoal infections found in the skin. [11] The potent anti-inflammatory properties can directly target the inflammation caused by psoriasis. [12]

8. Garlic: Garlic is a known anti-inflammatory agent, which is why it is recommended for people with heart and blood vessel problems like coronary artery disease. But eating garlic can also have effects on the skin as well! The potent anti-inflammatory ability of garlic can improve the skin inflammation caused by psoriasis. [13]

9. St. John’s Wort: A plant that has a long tradition in herbal remedies is St. John’s Wort. While it is more popular for its anti-depressant properties, topical application of the plant can treat minor wounds, burns, and skin irritations. St. John’s Wort has anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, and anti-microbial properties – all of which can be beneficial to people affected by psoriasis. [14] Check however for contraindications as it may interact with some medications.

10. Gingko Biloba: Gingko biloba is not only a supplement for memory and neuronal health, it is also a great supplement for maintaining skin health. Applying gingko biloba formulations moisturizes the skin deeply, promoting increased cell renewal and turnover. This will help keep dry skin hydrated by improving the turnover rate of the additional skin layers caused by psoriasis.

More tipsCoconut oil has been found antifungal and makes an excellent oil to nourish the skin and to use as a base oil for adding essential oils. Evening primrose oil also noted as a superb ingredient for skincare. Finally, check out Tamanu Oil which has been receiving great feedback as a remedy for scars and as an anti-aging skin oil.


[1] Akthar, N., et. al. (2011). Calendula extract: effects on mechanical parameters of human skin.

[2] Alnugaydan, A., et. al. (2015). Extracts from Calendula officinalis offer in vitro protection against H2 O2 induced oxidative stress cell killing of human skin cells.

[3] Hwang, E. (2013). A comparative study of baby immature and adult shoots of Aloe vera on UVB-induced skin photoaging in vitro.

[4] Fox, L., et. al. (2014). In Vivo skin hydration and anti-erythema effects of Aloe vera, Aloe ferox and Aloe marlothii gel materials after single and multiple applications.

[5] Amjadi, A., Mojab, F. & Kamranpour, S. (2012). The effect of peppermint oil on symptomatic treatment of pruritus in pregnant women.

[6] Dyer, J., et. al. (2014). The use of aromasticks at a cancer centre: a retrospective audit.

[7] Charousaei, F., Daibirian, A., & Mojab, F. (2011). Using chamomile solution or a 1% topical hydrocortisone ointment in the management of peristomal skin lesions in colostomy patients: results of a controlled clinical study.

[8] Lee, S., Heo, Y. & Kim, Y. (2010). Effect of German chamomile oil application on alleviating atopic dermatitis-like immune alterations in mice.

[9] Danby, S., et. al. (2013). Effect of olive and sunflower seed oil on the adult skin barrier: implications for neonatal skin care.

[10] Schweiger, D., et. al. (2013). Efficacy of a new tonic containing urea, lactate, polidocanol, and glycyrrhiza inflata root extract in the treatment of a dry, itchy, and subclinically inflamed scalp.

[11] Pazyar, N., et. al. (2013). A review of applications of tea tree oil in dermatology.

[12] Pazyar, N. & Yaghoobi, R. (2012). Tea tree oil as a novel antipsoriasis weapon.

[13] Kim, M., et. al. (2014). Aged black garlic exerts anti-inflammatory effects by decreasing no and proinflammatory cytokine production with less cytoxicity in LPS-stimulated raw 264.7 macrophages and LPS-induced septicemia mice.

[14] Wolfle, U, Seelinger, G., & Schempp, C. (2014). Topical application of St. John’s wort.

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