Living with psoriasis and eczema often means that the days begin and end with the same thought…itching. Many of my days have been all but consumed by desperately trying not to itch. These days rolled into weeks and months and for many this becomes an indefinite on off struggle.
Pruritus, otherwise known as itching, is unsurprisingly noted by many researchers as the main symptom we struggle with, often becoming the bane of our existence. Researchers in 2021 pointed to pruritus as having a significant impact on psoriasis patients’ quality of life and I can certainly see why. Even the seemingly mundane task of throwing on some clothes in the morning can be stretched out into a ridiculously lengthy dance of clothes flying across the bedroom until you’re faced with a mountain on the floor and nothing to wear! Whether something is too tight, too itchy, too hot, it all leads to the same outcome - irritated, and often sore, skin. This not only makes getting dressed an ordeal but any ability to look “nice” can seem like a trade you have to give away for comfort. Feeling itchy is one thing but your clothes itching on top of that is just too much to bear.
Despite this, “itchiness” is often worryingly overlooked by medical professionals. As a continuous state that merely fluctuates in intensity, it leaves many of us seeking our own remedies to quell the itch. One great place to start is your clothing or, more specifically, your fabric choices. Many synthetic materials, such as the polyester and nylon often used in swimwear, can exacerbate irritation. These manmade fibres are often not breathable or gentle for the skin, causing sweating and subsequent irritation. Rough seams and the dreaded melted scratchy ends of threads can also niggle throughout the day. Choosing comfortable and sensitive skin friendly fabrics can have a huge impact not only on the itch factor but everything else the day throws at you. Getting rid of this unnecessary stressor for your skin can only lighten the load.
Breathable fabrics will prevent the buildup of sweat and excess oils on your skin’s surface and reduce irritation. Skin friendly fabrics should also feel loose over the skin, as tight clothes can rub against flares, pull on damaged skin and encourage bleeding.
There are lots of good options when it comes to fabric choice:
- Modal and Lyocell - both made from wood fibres
Fabrics to generally avoid include:
- Wool - though natural it can often feel scratchy when against bare skin
Finding comfortable clothes when you are in a flare can be hard but, once you begin to discover what works for your skin, the relief is immense. Fashion can be such a powerful armour to give you the confidence and courage to take on anything the day will throw at you and finding clothes that support your healing can be a huge boost. Part of our ethos at Solpardus is you shouldn’t have to compromise with either looking or feeling good and you should be able to get sun on your skin without encouraging the dreaded itch. Our clothes are here to inspire confidence as well as bringing comfort and get you out in the sun gaining your smooth leopard spots.