Psoriasis friendly Christmas lunch
Christmas is the time to indulge and relax - something a lot of people with psoriasis find hard to do, so Simon is here to help with a healthy Christmas menu
I like to describe psoriasis as a ‘bespoke’ disease. It just makes it sound a touch more interesting and glamorous than the reality, don’t you think?! But actually, it’s not that far from the truth as everyone’s skin reacts differently to treatments and lotions. For many people, it’s a case of trial and error when trying to find a remedy that works. The same can also apply to fabrics, although in general there are certain materials that should be avoided by everyone.Knitwear is probably the trickiest area of clothing to get right.
As useful as online shopping is (particularly for those who would rather avoid the potential embarrassment of communal changing rooms), knitwear is one item that I always recommend is only bought if you have seen it in reality. A sweater can look great, can even feel perfectly suitable when you rub it between your fingers… but the true test is when you try it on. Let’s face it, your skin won’t be long in letting you know if the yarn is an irritant! Itch central! The only knitwear that can really be guaranteed to be gentle on your skin is cotton, such as this Slub Crew Sweater from Gap. Sadly, even cashmere has been known to aggravate psoriasis.
I am always amazed when I hear silk being hailed as a fabric that is ideal for a psoriasis sufferer to wear. Nobody can argue with the fact that it is soft and gentle on skin, however, has anyone ever tried wearing a silk shirt on top of skin that has been treated with oily emollients and greasy ointments? Frankly, it’s a disaster. Invariably the shirt will stick to your skin and then you have the headache of trying to remove the oily stains that appear on the silk. You may as well wear a flashing neon headband pronouncing your disease. Nope! Avoid silk like the plague is my advice, unless you are in the lucky position of having a household staff to deal with your laundry worries! Instead opt for an alternative such as this great Boho Embroidered Blouse from Marks & Spencer, which nods to the current ‘70s trend, will keep you cool and won’t show tell-tale signs of your treatments.
With summer in full swing, the constant plight of the psoriasis patient is how to look summery and stay cool without exposing their skin to the stares of others, and this is where chiffon can become your friend. However, a word of warning! Plain coloured chiffon will not conceal the plaques on your body; you will still be able to see them through the fabric. Instead, opt for patterned chiffon and, as florals are so in vogue this season, it shouldn’t be too hard to find one that suits. This Patterned Blouse from H&M is a perfect case in point. It’s wonderfully light and would look great paired with some white jeans. It has full coverage for arms and although it is basically black, the pattern will ensure camouflage should scalp psoriasis be a problem.
It’s nearly Christmas, so this month Helen is encouraging you to forget psoriasis and treat yourself! Check out her favourite classic leather handbags
Managing psoriasis alongside a demanding career can be a challenge. Lianne shares her tips on how she looks after her skin while achieving her work goals
Matt shares his fashion tips for men with psoriasis, including advice on fabrics that help to keep your skin comfortable as well as some stylish pieces to suit all ages