There is no cure for inverse psoriasis, but at-home, over-the-counter, and prescription treatments may alleviate symptoms.

Inverse psoriasis is a skin condition that causes shiny patches on your skin folds. These patches may look bright red or pink on fairer skin tones and violet or brown on darker skin tones.

Inverse psoriasis usually affects areas of your skin that rub together:

  • armpits
  • groin
  • area under the breasts
  • buttocks

Inverse psoriasis is a common type of psoriasis. In fact, according to a 2016 U.S. study, between 21% and 30% of adults with psoriasis have inverse psoriasis.

Inverse psoriasis is a chronic immune-mediated condition. There is no cure, but certain at-home, over-the-counter (OTC), and prescription treatments may alleviate your symptoms.

Read on to learn about the best treatments for inverse psoriasis, as well as its symptoms, prevention, and other helpful information.

The main goal of all psoriasis treatments is to alleviate inflammation. Home remedies may help with mild symptoms. For moderate or severe symptoms, you may need over-the counter (OTC) or prescription drugs.

Be sure to check with a healthcare professional before trying any home remedies. You may be at risk of developing an allergic reaction.

Here are some suggestions for at-home steps you can consider taking to help manage your inverse psoriasis.

Take short baths or showers in lukewarm water

The following practices for showers and baths may help reduce inflammation caused by psoriasis:

  • use lukewarm (not hot) water
  • limit time spent in the water to 15 minutes
  • try to take only one bath or shower a day
  • avoid using scrubs and washcloths; clean your skin using only your hands and fragrance-free soap for sensitive skin
  • gently dry the affected area of your skin by blotting water from your skin with a towel


Gently apply fragrance-free moisturizer on the affected area within 5 minutes of taking a shower or bath. You can also use moisturizers when your skin feels dry or irritated.

Wear loose clothing

Tight-fitting clothing may cause friction, which can irritate your skin and worsen your psoriasis.

Eat plenty of fiber

If inverse psoriasis affects your genitals or buttocks area, eating fiber can help ease bowel movements. This may help decrease skin irritation in the affected area.

Learn more about natural treatments for inverse psoriasis.

If home remedies are not enough to relieve your inverse psoriasis symptoms, you might consider OTC topicals (medications applied to the skin), such as topical steroid and nonsteroid medications.

Topical steroids

Topical steroids are the most common treatment for psoriasis. They manage inflammatory responses in the body, which brings down inflammation caused by inverse psoriasis. OTC steroids are mild (less concentrated) than prescription steroids. Hydrocortisone cream is one of the most commonly used over-the-counter topical steroids.

It’s important to know that long-term topical steroid use may cause:

  • red skin syndrome
  • skin thinning
  • bruising
  • stretch marks
  • enlarged blood vessels
  • poor wound healing

Nonsteroid topicals

Nonsteroid OTC topical medications come in many different forms:

  • lotions
  • foams
  • soaps
  • bath solutions
  • shampoos

They usually contain one of two main active ingredients — salicylic acid and coal tar. Both are FDA approved for the treatment of psoriasis.

OTC treatments may contain other active ingredients. Few have been studied, so it’s not known whether they are effective or safe. Be sure to speak with a healthcare professional before trying any OTC treatments.

If home remedies or OTC medications are not effective in managing your psoriasis, a doctor will likely prescribe you a stronger treatment. Options include prescription-strength topical steroids and nonsteroids (calcineurin inhibitors, vitamin D analogs) and systemic therapy.

Systemic therapy targets the whole body rather than the skin area psoriasis affects. Systemic therapies for inverse psoriasis include:

Oral systemic therapies

Oral systemic therapies for inverse psoriasis include:

These drugs are immunosuppressants, which means they can calm an overactive immune system. It’s important to know that immunosuppressants have many side effects and are usually reserved for moderate and severe psoriasis cases.

Injectable biologics

Biologics target specific cells inside your body and affect the immune system by interfering with the inflammatory process. There are currently 12 injectable biologics approved for psoriasis.

Biologics are expensive and can cause some side effects. Similarly to oral therapies, they are usually reserved for people with moderate or severe inverse psoriasis.

Inverse psoriasis is different from other types of psoriasis. Its symptoms typically include:

  • shiny, smooth rash
  • red on lighter skin or violet/brown on darker skin
  • no dry scales or crust
  • can be moist to touch
  • can be itchy

Be sure to speak with a primary care professional or dermatologist if you suspect that you have inverse psoriasis. If you are diagnosed with psoriasis, speak with your doctor if your symptoms are not getting better after you started treatment.

Inverse psoriasis is often genetic. Therefore, it’s challenging to prevent it entirely. However, you can reduce the frequency of flare-ups, which may include maintaining a moderate weight and avoiding psoriasis triggers.

Let’s go over a few questions that people with inverse psoriasis frequently ask their doctors.

Does inverse psoriasis ever go away?

Inverse psoriasis is a chronic condition. It can come and go throughout your life. Currently, there is no cure for inverse psoriasis.

What triggers inverse psoriasis?

Common triggers for inverse psoriasis include:

How do you stop inverse psoriasis from spreading?

Psoriasis is not contagious. You cannot transfer it to other people. However, if you have the skin condition, it can spread to other parts of your body.

You can manage the spread of psoriasis by using home remedies as well as OTC and prescription medications. In addition to prompt treatment, it’s important to avoid psoriasis triggers.

Learn more about curbing the spread of psoriasis.

Inverse psoriasis is a type of psoriasis that causes shiny patches on your skin folds. Although there is no cure, many home remedies as well as OTC and prescription medications can help you manage the condition.

You cannot entirely prevent inverse psoriasis, but there are things that you can do. For example maintaining a moderate weight and avoiding common psoriasis triggers can help curb its spread to other areas of your body and reduce the frequency of your flare-ups.