9 Quick Ways to Tidy Up Psoriasis Flakes

by Casey Nilsson Patient Advocate

One of the most obvious — and embarrassing — symptoms of psoriasis is scaly, flaky skin. For some people, good cream, a gentle exfoliator, and an emergency lint roller will do the trick. But others require greater clean-up interventions to keep the skin snowstorm at bay. Here are some quick, easy ways to tidy up your psoriasis flakes so you can go on living your best life.

Robot vacuum cleaner on wood

Vacuum and Sweep Often

Beds, furniture, flooring: If you’re in the midst of a bad flare — and if you live with people who don’t appreciate your prolific shedding — you’ll want to vacuum or sweep every surface you’ve graced. Shoot for every other day and, if you dislike the process, invest in a small robotic vacuum to do the work for you.

Woman using carpet cleaner.

Splurge on a Deep Clean

Tricky psoriasis flakes have a way of getting in places you’d never expect (radiators, for one!). If you can afford it, hire a professional to do a deep clean every once in a while so you can start fresh.

woman with handheld vacuum

Keep a Hand-held by the Bed

Small, bag-less, hand-held vacuums are convenient in the bedroom, where many people with psoriasis shed dead skin through the night. In the morning, shake off your comforter or quilt over the bed, then gently lift your sheets by each corner, quarantining any remnants in the center of the mattress. DustBust and done.

Black bedding and bedroom.

Try Black

Not clothing; that’d be a major giveaway. In your own home, you’ll want to be able to clearly spot your psoriasis flakes for easy cleanup. Black bedding and furniture fabrics make it easy to see what you’ve left behind so you can deal with it quickly and efficiently.

Woman shopping for sheets, right material.

Choose the Right Sheets

Fabrics made from 100 percent natural fibers — think: long-fibered cotton or silk — are best for psoriasis. They’re breathable, they won’t irritate the skin and, unlike synthetic materials or flannel that could worsen your psoriasis flaking, they are nonabrasive. Click here for more tips on finding the right sheets for your psoriasis.

Open door in washing machine with blue bed sheets inside

Clean Your Sheets

You’ll want to regularly wash your sheets in a safe, gentle, fragrance-free detergent — especially if you have a tacky cream/dry skin scenario with flakes sticking to your sheets. Depending on the severity of your condition, you may want to wash your sheets more frequently. Shoot for every other day or twice a week.

man using lint roller

Keep Lint Rollers on Hand

When you’re on the go or you’re headed to an important meeting, a travel-sized lint roller can be a lifesaver. Run it over your clothing from shoulders down to your toes to make sure you’re cleaned up and confident.

Woman taking a piece of transparent tape from Scotch tape dispenser.

When Without, Turn to Tape

A rolled-up piece of Scotch tape will do the trick when you’re in a pinch and need a cleanup at the office. After working your tape dispenser to the bones, be sure stop off at the pharmacy on the way home and pick up a lint roller for your desk drawer.

Young woman wearing a khaki trench coat hailing a taxi.

Wear the Right Clothing

Shirts with buttoned cuffs and fitted suiting will keep psoriasis flakes contained throughout the workday. Women also have the option of wearing good-quality opaque or patterned tights, which also work well for camouflaging psoriasis and keeping flakes contained all day.

woman putting on moisturizer

Prevention is Key

Talk to your physician about new methods for keeping your skin moist and preventing flakes. He or she may recommend a gentle chemical exfoliant such as salicylic acid to keep your flakes at bay. In the meantime, stretch your current medication with these useful tips — one of which could work double-time by moisturizing your skin through the night and keeping flakes contained.

Casey Nilsson
Meet Our Writer
Casey Nilsson

Casey Nilsson, an award-winning journalist and magazine editor based in Rhode Island, writes about autoimmune disease for HealthCentral. Casey is a 2018 Association of Health Care Journalists fellow, and her reporting on unfair labor conditions for people with disabilities was a finalist for the City and Regional Magazine Association Awards. Diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis in 2016, Casey enjoys digging into rheumatologic news, research and trends.