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Check out the top shampoos for scalp psoriasis that do not require a prescription. These include the top coal tar shampoos for psoriasis.
I suffered from Psoriasis when I wrongly assumed it was dandruff. But just like with dandruff, the best shampoo for psoriasis on your scalp can work wonders for controlling this condition.
Dandruff can be effectively treated with a good diet and a high-quality anti-dandruff shampoo that has Ketoconazole in it.
But Psoriasis on the other hand is a condition if left untreated can cause serious problems in the future.
Related: Best Anti-Dandruff Shampoos
Related: Best Shampoo For Scalp Acne
Firstly I had to STOP scratching my head as that made things worse.
But as I kept treating my hair with a good Psoriasis shampoo, the scaling and the flakiness stopped and I stopped scratching my head.
|Best Shampoos For Psoriasis||Best For||Active Ingredient|
|Neutrogena T/Gel Therapeutic Shampoo||Best Overall||0.5% Neutar (Coal Tar Extract)|
|MG217 Medicated Conditioning 3% Coal Tar Shampoo||Medicated Cleanser||3% Coal Tar|
|Dermarest Psoriasis Medicated Shampoo||OTC cleanser||3% Salicylic Acid|
|Psoriatrax 5% Coal Tar Psoriasis Shampoo||Sensitive scalp||5% Coal Tar|
|Sphagnum Botanicals Shampoo with Peat Mud||Organic cleanser||Peat, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Olive Oil, Argan Oil|
|Wild Naturals Eczema Psoriasis Shampoo||Natural shampoo||Aloe Vera, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Manuka Honey, Cehamii Extract|
|Dermasolve Medicated Shampoo + Conditioner||Steroid-free product||3% Salicylic Acid|
|Neutrogena T/Sal Shampoo||Flaking||3% Salicylic Acid|
|Head And Shoulders Clinical Strength Shampoo||Milder psoriasis||1% Selenium Sulfide|
|DHS Sal Shampoo||Clogged Hair Follciles||3% Salicylic Acid|
What is Psoriasis?
There are a number of scalp problems that currently exist and affect many individuals; however, nothing quite compares to scalp psoriasis.
Characterized by red scaly patches of skin, scalp psoriasis is as painful as it is inconvenient and can be notoriously hard to manage without the right tools.
Psoriasis is caused by a build-up of skin cells which results in thick, red scaly patches that can be itchy and painful with symptoms ranging anywhere between mild to severe.
Ingredients such as coal tar, salicylic acid, selenium sulfide, and more can be found in most medicated shampoos that are designed to alleviate and control psoriasis symptoms.
Since everyone’s scalp is different, it can be a challenge to decide which shampoo and which ingredient will work for you.
Hopefully, we can help. Read on to find out more about the best shampoos for psoriasis.
How I rated the scalp psoriasis shampoos?
These shampoos for psoriasis range from medicated products to all-natural shampoos. I checked several factors (crosschecking with research papers and dermatologist reviews) to see if the products help reduce psoriasis.
- Ingredients – I checked the formula of the shampoos and checked if they contain ingredients that help psoriasis. These include coal tar, zinc pyrithione, etc. I also checked the amount or percentage these products contain these ingredients.
- Gentleness On Hair – Some of these shampoos are actually too harsh on hair because the medicated formula can lead to severe dryness. So I also noted if these products contain ingredients that moisturize hair or not.
- Strength – I checked how well and how quickly the shampoos worked on scalp psoriasis.
Shampoos For Scalp Psoriasis 2023
Neutrogena T/Gel Therapeutic Shampoo
Best Shampoo For Psoriasis Overall
I have found that my scalp psoriasis symptoms are a thing of the past with Neutrogena’s T/Gel Therapeutic Shampoo.
Featuring an original therapeutic formula designed to help control scalp flaking and itching, Neutrogena’s T/Gel Therapeutic Shampoo can be used to treat various scalp conditions including chronic scalp psoriasis, seborrheic dermatitis, and dandruff.
Neutrogena’s T/Gel Therapeutic Shampoo is formulated with Neutar, Neutrogena’s patented coal tar extract.
Neutar works by normalizing the scalp, effectively slowing down the overproduction of skin cells on the scalp with the added benefit of reducing potential inflammation.
More importantly, it helps relieve scalp psoriasis symptoms including itching, flaking, and even thick psoriatic plaque buildup.
Neutar starts working on contact and has been scientifically proven to deliver potent scalp therapy for hours even after the shampoo has been rinsed off.
While it is highly-regarded as an effective shampoo for psoriasis treatment, some people may be put off by the smell as coal tar is known for its weird odor.
This, however, doesn’t change that fact that Neutrogena’s T/Gel Therapeutic Shampoo delivers on its promises of fast-acting and long-lasting relief from scalp psoriasis symptoms.
This therapeutic shampoo from the #1 dermatologist-recommended brand is also recognized by the National Psoriasis Foundation, so you can rest assured that your scalp is in good hands.
- Treats dandruff and sebhorreic dermatitis as well as psoriasis
- The coal tar formula works in one wash itself
- The odor can be unmanageable for some
- The sulfate-based formula is not suited for color-treated hair
- Ingredients – 4.5/5
- Gentleness On Hair – 4/5
- Strength – 4.5/5
MG217 Psoriasis Medicated Conditioning Shampoo
Best Medicated Shampoo For Psoriasis
For powerful and proven scalp psoriasis relief, look no further than MG217’s Psoriasis Medicated Conditioning Shampoo.
This product helps relieve itchy scalp, scaling, irritation, and redness, making it one of the most versatile medicated shampoos designed for scalp-related problems including psoriasis.
Featuring a maximum-strength formula that uses coal tar, MG217’s medicated shampoo works by slowing cell growth and effectively controlling buildup on the scalp.
Coal tar is considered to be one of the oldest ingredients used in treating psoriasis.
By slowing down cell growth, coal tar is able to help clear even severe scalp psoriasis effectively and prevent recurrence of symptoms.
Since it is formulated with coal tar, MG217’s Psoriasis Medicated Conditioning Shampoo won’t smell as good as most regular shampoos. However, it’s a small price to pay for effective relief from scalp psoriasis.
This Psoriasis Medicated Conditioning Shampoo from MG217 also features a conditioning formula that leaves hair soft, clean, and manageable.
Its many benefits for scalp psoriasis as well as its effectiveness has earned it its Seal of Recognition from the National Psoriasis Foundation.
- Works for all types of scalp issues including dermatitis and dandruff
- It doesn’t contain either SLS or SLES so it’s better for colored hair
- The shampoo contains moisturizers that prevent hair from drying out
- The coal tar in shampoo works instantly and will remove flakes in just 1-3 washes
- Doesn’t have the odor that Neutrogena does as it contains added fragrance
- Contains added perfume so it might not suit inflamed scalps
- Ingredients – 4.5/5
- Gentleness On Hair – 4/5
- Strength – 5/5
Dermarest Psoriasis Medicated Shampoo Plus Conditioner
Best For Sensitive Dry Scalps
Say hello to a healthier scalp with Dermarest’s Medicated Shampoo + Conditioner.
Specially formulated with a blend of 3% salicylic acid, a unique zinc complex, and botanicals that promote hair and scalp health, this medicated shampoo from Dermarest helps treat and relieve scalp psoriasis and its symptoms.
This shampoo goes beyond the itch to truly treat symptoms of scalp psoriasis such as flaking and an intensely itchy scalp.
Dermarest’s Medicated Shampoo + Conditioner uses salicylic acid to combat scalp psoriasis.
Salicylic acid is a peeling agent considered to be a common and effective mode of treatment for various skin problems including but not limited to scalp psoriasis.
This ingredient works by acting as a scale lifter, helping soften psoriatic scales and causing them to shed in order to eliminate buildup.
Since it uses salicylic acid instead of coal tar, Dermarest’s Medicated Shampoo + Conditioner won’t have that weird smell that coal tar is known for.
It’s fragrance-free, making it perfect for people who want the benefits of scalp psoriasis treatment without any unwanted smells.
This medicated shampoo from Dermarest helps remove and control scalp build-up, eliminates itching, soothes irritation, and restores moisture for a healthy scalp that is free of any psoriasis symptoms.
It is dermatologist-tested and recognized by the National Psoriasis Foundation, as well.
- The salicylic acid formula helps exfoliate scalp, removing crusts and white flakes
- The formula is very gentle and suits scalps with mild psoriasis cases
- The shampoo contains kukui nut oil that prevents hair from becoming dry
- Isn’t as effective as coal tar shampoos so not a great product if you have severe psoriasis
- Ingredients – 5/5
- Gentleness On Hair – 4/5
- Strength – 5/5
PsoriaTrax Anti-Dandruff Tar Shampoo
Best Over The Counter Psoriasis Shampoo
One surefire way of clearing scalp psoriasis symptoms fast is to use a maximum-strength medicated shampoo. We recommend PsoriaTrax’s Anti-Dandruff Tar Shampoo, a steroid-free shampoo formulated with maximum-strength coal tar.
With a coal tar concentration of over 5%, this tar shampoo is highly effective at clearing scalp psoriasis.
Much like the other products on this list, PsoriaTrax’s Anti-Dandruff Tar Shampoo also uses coal tar as its main scalp psoriasis-clearing ingredient.
Coal tar works by sloughing away dead skin cells while at the same time slowing down the rapid turnover of skin cells.
What makes this product unique is its high concentration of coal tar.
Featuring maximum OTC strength coal tar, PsoriaTrax’s Anti-Dandruff Tar Shampoo caters to individuals with severe scalp psoriasis.
Its strong but effective formula helps clear psoriatic plaques faster than other coal tar shampoos on the market and prevents pesky flare-ups, guaranteeing a clean and healthy scalp that isn’t riddled with psoriatic scales.
We highly recommend PsoriaTrax’s Anti-Dandruff Tar Shampoo for people suffering from severe scalp psoriasis.
Featuring 5% coal tar concentration, this tar shampoo packs a punch and provides fast and effective scalp psoriasis treatment.
- Ingredients – 5/5
- Gentleness On Hair – 3/5
- Strength – 5/5
Sphagnum Eczema & Psoriasis Shampoo
Best Organic Shampoo For Psoriasis
For all-natural psoriasis treatment, we highly recommend Sphagnum’s Eczema & Psoriasis Shampoo.
Featuring a unique blend of argan oil and powerful balneological peat, this all-natural shampoo from Sphagnum hydrates, nourishes, and deep cleanses your scalp and hair to effectively address inflammation, itchiness, and micro wounds caused by both psoriasis and eczema.
Sphagnum’s Eczema & Psoriasis Shampoo is formulated with a unique ingredient called Peat Mud.
Peat Mud contains both humic and fulvic acids, as well as other microelements that deeply penetrate your skin, cleansing it thoroughly and delivering nutrients and minerals that help your skin recover from damage.
Also known as Black Diamond in Northern Europe, Peat Mud is known for its healing powers as well as its effectiveness in alleviating symptoms associated with eczema, dermatitis, and psoriasis.
Another ingredient worth mentioning is argan oil. Argan oil, which is filled with vitamin E, fatty acids, antioxidants, and carotenoids, helps balance your scalp’s natural moisture levels.
It even acts as a natural DHT blocker and reduces the risk of hair loss.
Sphagnum’s Eczema & Psoriasis Shampoo is an effective and all-natural alternative to the other medicated shampoos on this list.
Featuring a formula that is 100% natural, hypoallergenic, and cruelty-free, this shampoo is definitely a must-try if you prefer a gentler alternative that is free of any synthetic chemicals.
Wild Naturals Eczema & Psoriasis Shampoo
Best Natural Shampoo For Psoriasis
For people with scalp psoriasis who have sensitive skin, we recommend trying out Wild Naturals’ Eczema & Psoriasis Shampoo.
This non-medicated shampoo uses a concentrated and natural formula free of any harsh chemicals that may end up doing more harm than good.
Formulated with all-natural ingredients, Wild Naturals’ Eczema & Psoriasis Shampoo works as a great alternative compared to other shampoos that may be too harsh on sensitive scalps.
One of its main ingredients is manuka honey, an antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and moisture-retaining substance known for its healing qualities.
This ingredient is packed with a unique blend of amino acids, vitamins, and minerals that help seal in moisture in order to protect and soothe dry, itchy, and damaged skin.
Manuka honey works by reducing inflammation and fighting off any skin-irritating microbes resulting in decreased psoriasis symptoms.
This ingredient works in tandem with aloe vera, which soothes and moisturizes your scalp, and cehami, which stops itching and redness associated with psoriasis.
Wild Naturals’ Eczema & Psoriasis Shampoo is also pH-balanced so you can rest assured that it won’t strip away vital oils that your scalp needs to protect itself.
If you’re looking for a natural solution to scalp psoriasis, you won’t go wrong with Wild Naturals’ Eczema & Psoriasis Shampoo.
Dermasolve Medicated Shampoo Plus Conditioner
Best Steroid-Free Shampoo
Experience immediate relief from scalp psoriasis symptoms with Dermasolve’s Medicated Shampoo Plus Conditioner.
Formulated with salicylic acid as well as naturally sourced vitamins, proteins, and minerals, this medicated shampoo from Dermasolve helps eliminate symptoms associated with psoriasis, seborrheic dermatitis, and dandruff.
Dermasolve’s Medicated Shampoo Plus Conditioner uses salicylic acid to keep psoriasis symptoms under control.
Thanks to this ingredient, this shampoo is able to control crusty build-up normally associated with scalp psoriasis while at the same time preventing the recurrence of symptoms.
This steroid-free medicated shampoo leaves your hair feeling soft, conditioned, and more manageable with each wash and is gentle enough for use even on color-treated hair.
For a healthier scalp free of psoriasis symptoms and softer hair, we recommend Dermasolve’s Medicated Shampoo Plus Conditioner.
Neutrogena T/Sal Shampoo
Best For Flaking
If you have a milder case of psoriasis, then try the Neutrogena T/sal shampoo. Unlike its T/Gel counterpart which comes with coal tar, this shampoo contains 3 percent salicylic acid.
This chemical exfoliator helps remove light crusts, dandruff, and flaking from the scalp. It also helps with reducing itching and inflammation.
Recommended by dermatologists worldwide, this shampoo is also great for other scalp conditions like fungal infections and seborrheic dermatitis.
Head And Shoulders Clinical Strength Shampoo
Best For Milder Psoriasis
Head and shoulders is a well-known brand that produces cleansers for dandruff.
But this clinical strength version of their regular shampoo is fantastic for milder scalp psoriasis.
The chief ingredient here is 1 percent of Selenium Sulfide. It helps with cleansing the scalp of crusty flakes and controlling inflammation.
You can also use this shampoo for color-treated hair.
DHS Sal Shampoo
Best Shampoo For Psoriasis And Crusty Scales
The active ingredient in the DHS sal shampoo, as the name hints at, is 3% Salicylic Acid.
And you should know, salicylic acid is a form of BHA (beta-hydroxy acid) that is superb at removing dead skin cells and unclogging pores.
So when it comes to removing the crusty, flaky layer on your scalp, and cleaning up your hair follicles, you can find no better help than salicylic acid!
This shampoo also happens to contain Cocamidopropyl betaine and not SLS or SLES, so you can safely use it on your scalp without fear of further dryness.
I have to say, I was a tad disappointed at the price. I felt the quantity offered as very low compared to the price.
You can find other salicylic acid-bases psoriasis shampoos (like the Neutrogena T/Sal) for comparatively WAY less.
How Do I Know If I Have Dandruff Or Scalp Psoriasis
If you’ve noticed your scalp is experiencing excessive dryness, irritation, itching, flaking, or bleeding, you may be wondering if it’s dandruff or scalp psoriasis.
It can be tricky to identify each condition without looking beneath a microscope and seeking professional medical help, but there are several signs to look out for that can help you determine if your scalp issue is in fact psoriasis.
To understand the details you’ll need to recognize to identify scalp psoriasis, let’s first look at what the condition is. Psoriasis is a chronic skin condition where the body overproduces skin cells. This causes an accumulation of dry, dead skin cells on the scalp.
It’s caused by an overactive immune system, so not only does it contribute to the buildup of skin cells, but it also causes inflammation. In turn, this leads to red patches, silver-white scales that may flake off, itching, and even sores that may bleed.
Considering the similarities between dandruff and scalp psoriasis, it’s tough to distinguish between the two if someone has just the basics to go on.
The key differences that give away the type of scalp issue you’re dealing with are the swelling, redness, and bleeding of sores.
With dandruff, the scalp may be dry and flaky, but this is not accompanied by any sort of discoloration, patchiness, or sores. Additionally, since scalp psoriasis is an autoimmune issue, it may spread to other parts of the body if left untreated.
To ensure a proper diagnosis, it’s always advised to see a medical professional who can carry out any necessary tests to confirm the condition; however, here are some signs to look out for to give you an idea of whether you’re dealing with dandruff or scalp psoriasis:
- Swelling and redness: People with scalp psoriasis often experience uncomfortable and swollen patches with redness.
- Patches and plaques: These patches typically feel thick to the touch and may contain silver-white scales or sometimes yellowish or crusted lesions.
- Itching and sores: People with scalp psoriasis often feel the area itch, while they may also notice bleeding or weeping sores.
- Spread: Unlike traditional dandruff, scalp psoriasis may spread to other parts of the body, such as the elbows, knees and lower back.
If these signs sound familiar to you, then it’s best to make an appointment to confirm the diagnosis with your doctor.
A variety of treatments are available for scalp psoriasis, such as topical treatments, light therapy, and medication. In addition, you should look for specialized shampoos that contain natural ingredients such as aloe vera, tea tree oil, salicylic and lactic acid, and supplements like probiotics to help reduce inflammation, soothe itching and irritation, and reduce the build-up of dead skin cells.
With the right combination of treatment and lifestyle changes, you can manage your scalp psoriasis and enjoy healthy, comfortable skin.
How often should you wash your hair if you have psoriasis?
This is a common question everyone asks. The short answer is that it depends!
One on hand it’s important to remove the flakes and crusts formed by psoriasis.
But, over shampooing can also strip away your scalp’s natural oils, leaving it drier.
It’s best to consult your dermatologist about this.
A good idea would be to use a mild, sulfate-free daily shampoo everyday, and a strong shampoo for psoriasis once a week.
Can you use hair dye if you have psoriasis?
Yes. Unless you have very severe psoriasis, it is perfectly possible to dye your hair. However you need to keep a few pointers in mind.
Always conduct a patch test (allergy test) before application
Try using natural, ammonia-free hair dyes like henna
Protect the area around your face and neck from the dye by applying petroleum jelly
Do not dye your locks during a flare up
While there is no definitive cure for scalp psoriasis, there are ways to keep it under control.
Treatment options often come in the form of various oils, ointments, and steroid solutions; however, basic treatment starts with using the best shampoo for psoriasis.
So make sure to pick the right one!
Dandruff Vs. Dry Scalp | Key Differences, Causes And How To Treat Each
Neutrogena T/Gel Therapeutic Shampoo
The best shampoo for psoriasis is the Neutrogena T/Gel Therapeutic Shampoo. It contains coal tar that helps control flaking and itching.
Product SKU: NGNA2RNU84Y12Y7G41
Product Brand: Neutrogena
Product Currency: USD
Product Price: $8.90
Price Valid Until: 2023-11-18
Product In-Stock: InStock
- The salicylic acid helps control psoriasis
- It helps control flaking and inflammation
- The shampoo contains sulfates
- The shampoo makes hair dry