the best shampoo?

** Originally posted by missholly **

hello everyone,
i've been using pentrax tar shampoo for a good while now, and it used to work a lot better before. so i was just wondering if anyone had any suggestions for a better shampoo that worked out there. thanks beforehand


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16 replies. Join the discussion

** Originally posted by Eve-Maridy_R **

Note from the Psoriasis Foundation Member Services Coordinator:

The National Psoriasis Foundation's Treatment Guide lists five companies to contact for shampoos that may be beneficial for scalp psoriasis. The companies are as follows:

1) Eljay Enterprises, LLC
121 Loring Avenue, Suite 360
Salem, MA 01970
(978) 744-4459
-Blue Lagoon Shower Gel for Hair and Body
-Blue Lagoon Treatment Shampoo

2) Pharmaceutical Specialties, Inc.
PO Box 6298
Rochester, MN 55903
(800) 325-8232
-Free & Clear Shampoo

3) McNeil Consumer Healthcare
86 Summit Avenue
Summit, NJ 07901
(800) 962-5357
-Nizoral A-D Shampoo

4) IVAX Pharmaceuticals
4400 Biscayne Blvd.
Miami, FL 33137
(800) 327-4114
-P & S Liquid

5) Triton Consumer Products, Inc.
561 West Golf
Arlington Heights, IL 60005
(800) 942-2009
-MG 217 Tar Free Shampoo

If you need any additional information, don't hesitate to contact the Foundation's Patient Education Support Specialists toll free at (800) 723-9166. We are here to help!


Eve-Maridy Rice
Member Services Coordinator

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** Originally posted by krissy **

I have tried a few different shampoos with differeing success through the years. I have to suggest trying Neutrogena T-gel (excellent stuff).


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** Originally posted by Zwijndrecht **

As a long time some point the shampoos will not work without a little prescription help.

If you think you are at that point, but are reluctant to start prescriptions or they cost a lot...I always found that I could get by with the prescription twice a week and the nonRx shampoos the rest of the time.

Whatever you do, nothing lasts forever, you have to try the next available thing.

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** Originally posted by NL **

I have to say there are three OTC shampoos I have found to be effective:

1. Bakers P & S shampoo
2. Thicker Fuller Hair
3. Paul Mitchell Special Tea Tree Shampoo

I used 1 and 2 for awhile but they both seemed to lose effectiveness. I now use #3 which I read about on this website and like. They also have a scalp treatment but I have yet to try it.

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** Originally posted by jtfreeman **

I have used z-tar for 25 years , when I have an outbreak of P.
Woke up last thur.just covered ..........think will get a light box this time..........I also use Lidex .jf

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** Originally posted by meow **

I've tried almost all of the over the counter coal tar shampoos, some of the prescription ones such as Nizoral 2%. For me, I can say that the typical strength coal tar shampoos at the drug store are not effective. After a month of use, I can't see or feel any difference. The Nizoral (both the 1% and 2%) didn't affect the psoriasis either. And I used a LOT of Nizoral (not miserly amounts) on a once per day regimen. The Nizoral 2% is a prescription item in the USA.

The effective ones on my scalp psoriasis were the Pentrax 7.5% volume FracTar and the Ionil-T 5% volume coal tar shampoos. As a body wash, the Pentrax was way too expensive, but the Ionil-T was useful that way. They didn't stop the flaking (there is still a lot of it), but they did noticeably improve things.

I can't find the Pentrax in the stores anymore. It came in the tiny 4 ounce bottles and cost about $7.50 each at Longs Drugs (back when they did have it). So, I am using Ionil-T for now.

Ionil-T is available at a few stores in a small bottle, but is similarly expensive as the Pentrax. The cheapest source for it is online at in a big bottle.

Ionil-T 32oz bottle at

I think the main reason why the Ionil-T works so well for me is that it is a thinner shampoo that doesn't lather up a lot. That way, more of the active ingredient penetrates to the scalp and also isn't as diluted by the volume expansion of lather.

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** Originally posted by meow **

Hmm, no longer sells the Ionil CONDITIONER that was compatible with their tar shampoo. They still have the tar shampoo though (and for that I am glad).

I have always wondered if the use of a conditioner would drastically weaken the effect of the tar shampoo.

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** Originally posted by FlakeyMatt **

I have found a prescription of Capitrol made by Westwood 3x a week does well for me........FlakeyMatt

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** Originally posted by Barbi **

We had a bad experience with P&S liquid....something the doctor called Fire Scalp occured.
We swithced over to X-SEBT Plus which is working O.K.,but not the greatest.....we are still looking for a better shampoo....My daughter's scalp is the most resistant place to treatment thus far. For her, the flakes have been horrendous at times, snowing down alll over her, and have caused a few days of missed school for fear of embarassment......:(
We continue to accept suggestions, as it does seem what works for one person does not work for another.

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** Originally posted by Manc **

What has worked best for me is switching shampoos. 1-2 per week a Tea Tree Shampoo like Paul Mitchell. 2-3 times per week Ionil, T-gel, Fractar. Once per week Nioxin scalp treatment. Also Standard Process Vitamins have helped a great deal. My Chiropractor put me on dessicated adrenal and dermatrophin. After a week, I noticed a significant change in my scalp.

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** Originally posted by eranthis **

I have found that using any shampoo that doesn't have sodium laurel sulfate in it helps my scalp better than any tar shampoo I have tried (most of which have sodium laurel sulfate...). Many people don't feel they clean very well, but I have had good luck with Burt's Bees Grapefruit shampoo. Their shampoo with raspberries (?? - maybe strawberries) isn't as effective at cleaning, but it does smell delicious.


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** Originally posted by klm123 **

i use tarsum shampoo and it really works wonders. also, dermasmoothe scalp oil works really, really well if you are looking for a good scalp treatment

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** Originally posted by artg **

I tried coal tar shampoos etc before I even realised it was scalp P i was treating. Nothing worked until I tried Nizoral shampoo - gone in a few weeks and hasnt returned in 5 years.

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** Originally posted by smcrae **

I've been dealing with Psoriasis since I was 16....I'm 38 now. I've used every OTC shampoo I can think of. My dermatologist recommended DHS Tar Shampoo (it HAS to be the tar brand). It comes in 2 differ kinds. Anyway, it doesn't make it totally go away....but it's the best OTC product (besides prescriptions) I've used. It's hard to find in stores....the only place I've found it is at Drug Emporium and it runs about $10.00 Believe's worth it. I'd pay $20 for it!! I also looked it up on the's a little cheaper there....$8.88. It keeps those embarrassing times a little less embarrassing when it comes to flakes. If my head is really out of control I’ll use it every day for a week…then after that I can use it about 2-3 times a week and regular shampoo in between…keeps it under control!! Good luck! :D

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** Originally posted by bearsmom **

For my 9 year old daughter I do my own combination shampoo.

3x a week I put in the palm of my hand a mixture with 1/2 part extra strength T-Gel, 1/4 selson blue naturals (sal acid), and 1/4 otc Nizoral. Those days are bath days, and I let it sit on her head for 15-20 minutes before rinsing & conditioning. The other days of the week I just use head & shoulders sensitive shampoo.

1-2x a week clobetasol solution (prescrip) on scalp, and 1-2x a week usually over the weekend we put on dermasmooth (prescrip) with a shower cap and leave on overnight.

This has worked to get her scalp under great control. Before she constantly had huge flakes stuck to her hair and it was so bad I kept her from home from school more than once until we got it under control. Before we were properly diagnosed and getting the right treatment daycare and school were sending notes home one thought she had lice, another ringworm, and another basically was wondering if I every washed my daughters hair (when i was doing it every night). It was really scary combing through her hair after baths at night, all those chunks of skin coming off and still a head full of flakes in the morning. Now her scalp just has some scattered reddish brown flat spots with hardly any flaking at all.

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** Originally posted by DEBAK **


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