Ways to Cover and Conceal Psoriasis

Camo For Your Skin

Hiding psoriasis has never been easier, says Gervaise Gerstner, MD, a board certified dermatologist with a practice in New York City. “There are so many wonderful creams [and foundations] that you don’t hear many people complaining about psoriasis cosmetically anymore,” she says.

Follow these simple psoriasis coverage techniques this summer so you can flaunt even-looking skin in revealing seasonal styles.

Set the Stage

Whether you’re looking to cover up psoriasis on your face or your entire body, be sure to start with a cleanser formulated for sensitive skin. Next, pour some bath oil onto a soft sponge, add warm water, and gently remove scales from your skin.

To create a hydrated surface on your face, use a fragrance-free, hypoallergenic moisturizer. For areas other than the face, go for thicker formulas. “For legs and arms, you should consider a petroleum-based moisturizer, which will stop scales from flaking and help them appear less red,” says Laura Geller, founder of Laura Geller Beauty in New York City.

Prime Your Face for Foundation

Before applying makeup, use a fragrance-free primer to smooth the surface of your skin and allow your foundation to stay on better. While primers can include moisturizing agents, Geller recommends using separate products: first the moisturizer, followed by the primer. “If it’s a good primer," she says, "it acts as something that floats on the skin, creating a resurfacing effect."

Choose the Right Formula

When it comes to foundation, being picky is key. Geller offers these tips:

1. Pick a foundation that’s not too slippery, so it won’t cling to the area you’re covering. Cream formulas will maintain a dewier look, while liquids tend to be too sheer.

2. Avoid powdered formulas, which emphasize flaking and scaling.

3. Choose a foundation with sunscreen to keep psoriasis from getting worse.

4. Look to match the skin you’re covering – don’t try to lighten or darken it. You may need one shade for your face and another for your legs and arms.

5. Be cautious when using products with green dye, which is used to block out redness, because they can irritate psoriasis.

Who Wears Short Shorts?

Baring your arms and legs is fairly inevitable when the sun is beating down on you. With psoriasis, an easy fix is the application of one of a number of camouflaging body solutions, such as Votre Vu Silk Stockings Tinted Body Lotion or Sally Hansen Airbrush Legs spray (famously used by Kim Kardashian to hide her psoriasis), which dries to a matte finish.

Step-By-Step Application Basics

Get the most mileage out of your cover-up by following these easy steps:

Step 1: Do a patch test first to check for sensitivity and effectiveness.

Step 2: Use your fingers to warm up the products, making them easier to apply.

Step 3: If you choose to use an applicator, make sure it's allergy-free and disposable.

Step 4: Apply with a gentle dabbing motion across the skin.

Step 5: Don’t overdo it. If it looks like cover-up, you’re wearing too much.

Step 6: Avoid items with shimmer, which can irritate skin and draw attention to problem areas.

Take note: Be careful not to put makeup on any open sores, where bleeding or blistering is occurring. And, when selecting products, you may want to talk to your dermatologist first.

Show Off Your Flair for Fashion

Airy scarves and shawls can offer quick coverage, as can breathable fabrics like long-sleeved linen or cotton shirts and pants. Long skirts and maxi dresses are also a good go-to option in the summer. A chandelier necklace for women or festive bow tie for men draws the eye away from problem areas. A bright lipstick or dramatic eyes also do the trick.

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