15 Effective Home Remedies To Get Rid Of Jock Itch June 13, 2017

It’s itching, and it’s at a location you cannot scratch. Except when you are all alone in the restroom. A jock itch can be annoying as hell with all the itching and the accompanying burning sensation. This article will talk in detail about this condition and how you can get rid of it with simple home remedies.

Jock itch, medically known as tinea cruris, is a stinging rash that appears in the groin area. It can spread to the buttocks and inner thighs if left untreated. Though it mostly affects men, women are not immune to this annoying problem. Let us look at how this rash can develop and the associated symptoms.

How Do You Get Jock Itch?

Men are 10 times more susceptible than women to get a bout of jock itch. What causes this nasty rash that makes you do that unpleasant, unwelcome, and disgusting action of scratching your groin in public? Here are the most common causes:

  • Tight, non-skin friendly underwear (say no to lycra and stick to cotton)
  • Fungal infections (mainly ringworm)
  • Skin friction in the thigh and groin area
  • Build-up of sweat and warmth in the groin
  • Tight jeans and pants

Besides being uncomfortable and embarrassing, the jock itch can also become worse over time if left untreated. The rash may spread to the penis, scrotum, buttocks, anus, and inner thighs in men, and the vulva, labia, buttocks, anus, and inner thighs in women. It may take on a more aggressive look over time, changing from a simple rash to angry, red raised spots that are so sore that they can’t bear even the touch of fabric or water (1, 2). So, before you leave your jock itch to fate (and blame it later), try a good home remedy that will nip it in the bud.

Jock Itch Symptoms

The initial symptom of jock itch (common to both sexes) is an uncomfortable itching in the groin. Normally, the more folds your skin has, the worse your itch will be. The itching may sometimes clear up with better hygiene. When it doesn’t, it might progress to rough sores. In extreme cases, these sores may become oozy and pus-filled. The rash is symmetrical and will spread evenly to both sides of the body. Women may even develop vaginal infections if they leave the jock rash untreated for long.

Also, in rare cases, jock itch can lead to skin abscesses and cellulitis. These conditions are rare, but require a strict treatment regimen. In some cases, repetitive jock itch can discolor the skin of the genitals.

So, do not delay treating this issue and stop it from progressing any further with the home remedies listed below.

How Do You Get Rid Of Jock Itch At Home?

  1. Apple Cider Vinegar
  2. Baking Soda
  3. Rubbing Alcohol
  4. Cornstarch
  5. Hydrogen Peroxide
  6. Essential Oil
  7. Oatmeal And Epsom Salt Bath
  8. Garlic And Honey
  9. Aloe Vera
  10. Calamine Lotion
  11. Listerine
  12. Lemon
  13. Onion
  14. Coconut Oil
  15. Herbal Extracts

Home Remedies For Jock Itch

1. Apple Cider Vinegar

1.-Apple-Cider-Vinegar Pinit

Image: Shutterstock

You Will Need
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 cups water
  • A cotton washcloth
What You Have To Do
  1. Dilute the vinegar in water and lightly warm it up.
  2. Dip the washcloth in this and place it on the affected area for 5-10 minutes.
  3. Remove the washcloth and pat the skin dry.
How Often You Should Do This

Repeat this 2-3 times in a day.

Why This Works

ACV has natural drying and antifungal qualities. The fungus causing the infection will be eliminated, and the rash will start to heal (3).

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2. Baking Soda

2.-Baking-Soda Pinit

Image: Shutterstock

You Will Need
  • 1-2 tablespoons baking soda
  • Water
What You Have To Do
  1. Make a thick paste with the baking soda and water and apply it on the rash.
  2. Leave it on for about 15 minutes.
  3. Wash it off and wipe the skin dry.
How Often You Should Do This

Apply baking soda paste twice a day.

Why This Works

Baking soda, another common element found in every kitchen, has strong drying and soothing properties. It also neutralizes the haphazard pH levels at the affected site, which helps to reduce the infection. Its antifungal properties deal with the infection effectively (4, 5).

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3. Rubbing Alcohol

3.-Rubbing-Alcohol Pinit

Image: Shutterstock

You Will Need
  • 90% isopropyl alcohol (rubbing alcohol)
  • Cotton
What You Have To Do

Using the cotton, apply the alcohol on the affected area and let it dry.

How Often You Should Do This

Do this 3-4 times a day.

Why This Works

Alcohol evaporates quickly and keeps the area dry. This becomes an unsuitable environment for the fungus as it thrives in moist and warm surroundings. Alcohol also works against the infection as it is a disinfectant and an antimicrobial agent (6).

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4. Cornstarch

4.-Cornstarch Pinit

Image: Shutterstock

You Will Need

Cornstarch

What You Have To Do

Sprinkle some cornstarch on the rash and leave it on.

How Often You Should Do This

Repeat this a few times during the day.

Why This Works

Cornstarch is a key component in items like baby powders. It suits sensitive skin and easily absorbs the excess moisture from the skin. This remedy will help to keep the affected area dry and reduce the itching (7).

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5. Hydrogen Peroxide

5.-Hydrogen-Peroxide Pinit

Editorial credit: Jeffrey B. Banke / Shutterstock.com

You Will Need
  • 1 teaspoon hydrogen peroxide
  • 1 teaspoon water
  • Petroleum jelly
  • Cotton
What You Have To Do
  1. Dilute hydrogen peroxide with water.
  2. Apply this on the affected area with the cotton. It will produce a stinging sensation.
  3. Apply petroleum jelly on top and leave it on overnight.
How Often You Should Do This

Repeat this every night before going to bed.

Why This Works

Hydrogen peroxide is an effective antifungal agent, but be prepared for the stinging sensation if you decide to try this remedy (8).

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6. Essential Oil For Jock Itch

6.-Essential-Oil-For-Jock-Itch Pinit

Image: Shutterstock

You Will Need
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup neem oil
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 10 drops lavender oil
  • 10 drops myrrh oil
  • 5 drops tea tree oil
What You Have To Do
  1. Mix all the ingredients and transfer the mixture to a glass jar with a tight lid.
  2. Apply some of this homemade ointment on the rash and leave it on.

The essential oils mentioned can also be used by themselves after diluting with a few drops of coconut oil.

How Often You Should Do This

Apply twice a day.

Why This Works

Myrrh, lavender, and tea tree oils contain antimicrobial compounds (9, 10, 11). The infection causing fungi can be easily killed with these oils, giving you relief from the itching and burning sensation.

[ Read: Benefits Of Tea Tree Oil For Health ]

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7. Oatmeal And Epsom Salt Bath

7.-Oatmeal-And-Epsom-Salt-Bath Pinit

Image: Shutterstock

You Will Need
  • 2 cups oatmeal
  • 1 cup Epsom salt
  • 10-12 drops lavender essential oil (optional)
  • A bathtub with warm water
What You Have To Do
  1. Draw a bath and add the oatmeal and Epsom salt to it.
  2. Soak in this for about 20 minutes and then rinse your body with plain water.
How Often You Should Do This

Do this every day for quick relief from jock itch.

Why This Works

Epsom salt is hygroscopic in nature and absorbs all the excess moisture from the affected area (12). It is also antifungal in nature (13). Oatmeal helps to soothe the itchiness and calm down the skin (14).

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8. Garlic And Honey

8.-Garlic-And-Honey Pinit

Image: Shutterstock

You Will Need
  • 1-2 garlic cloves
  • 1 tablespoon honey
What You Have To Do
  1. Crush the garlic and mix it with the honey.
  2. Apply this on the jock itch and keep it on for 15-20 minutes.
  3. Rinse it off and pat the skin dry.
How Often You Should Do This

Do this twice a day.

Why This Works

Garlic and honey make a wonderful combo that can banish the itching for good. If you are worried that the garlic might sting, the honey will do the trick. Garlic has strong antifungal properties, and honey is a natural remedy that can soothe and soften the skin (15, 16).

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9. Aloe Vera

9.-Aloe-Vera Pinit

Image: Shutterstock

You Will Need

An aloe leaf

What You Have To Do
  1.  Cut open the leaf and extract the gel present inside.
  2. Clean the affected area and dry it.
  3. Apply fresh aloe gel on it and leave it on.
How Often You Should Do This

Apply aloe gel 2-3 times a day.

Why This Works

Aloe vera has natural soothing and non-acidic qualities. It reduces the itching as well as the burning sensation with its cooling properties. Aloe gel is also antiseptic in nature and can help to treat jock itch (17).

[ Read: Best Aloe Vera Gels Available In India ]

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10. Calamine Lotion For Jock Itch

You Will Need

Calamine lotion

What You Have To Do

Clean the area and apply calamine lotion on the rash.

How Often You Should Do This

Apply the lotion as and when required.

Why This Works

Calamine lotion soothes the skin and gives relief from the itching sensation (18).

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11. Listerine For Jock Itch

11.-Listerine-For-Jock-Itch Pinit

Editorial credit: Enriscapes / Shutterstock.com

You Will Need
  • Listerine mouthwash
  • Cotton
What You Have To Do
  1. Dab some of the mouthwash on the cotton and apply on the affected area.
  2. You can wash it off after a couple of minutes.
  3. Do not forget to pat the skin dry.
How Often You Should Do This

Do this twice a day.

Why This Works

The antiseptic and antifungal properties of Listerine are often used for dandruff relief. The same properties will give immediate relief from tinea cruris as well (19).

Caution

The alcohol in Listerine might cause a slight stinging sensation initially, but you will swear by it when you experience that immense relief.

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12. Lemon For Jock Itch

12.-Lemon-For-Jock-Itch Pinit

Image: Shutterstock

You Will Need
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon water
  • Cotton ball
What You Have To Do
  1. Dilute the lemon juice and apply it on the affected area with the cotton ball.
  2. Leave it on for 4-5 minutes and then wash it off.
  3. Pat the skin dry.
How Often You Should Do This

Use this remedy twice a day for best results.

Why This Works

Lemon juice is a natural antimicrobial agent that can help to eliminate the infection and treat tinea cruris (20).

Caution

The lemon juice will sting a little because of its acidity.

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13. Onion

13.-Onion Pinit

Image: Shutterstock

You Will Need
  • 1/4 onion
  • Cotton pad
What You Have To Do
  1. Grate the onion and squeeze firmly to extract its juice.
  2. Soak the cotton pad in the juice and place it on the rash. You can also use a cotton ball to apply the juice on the affected area.
  3. Leave it on for 20-30 minutes.
  4. Wash it off and dry the area well.
How Often You Should Do This

Apply this twice a day.

Why This Works

Onion is a natural anti-inflammatory and antifungal root (21).

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14. Coconut Oil

14.-Coconut-Oil Pinit

Image: Shutterstock

You Will Need

Organic coconut oil

What You Have To Do
  1. Apply a few drops of the oil on the rash.
  2. Leave it on overnight.
How Often You Should Do This

Do this every night, before going to bed.

Why This Works

The application of coconut oil (as pure as you can find) on the affected area will give you lasting relief. Coconut has natural properties that soothe the rash and block moisture. It also makes the skin smooth and less susceptible to jock itch in the future (22).

[ Read: Benefits Of Coconut Oil for skin and Hair ]

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15. Herbal Extracts

15.-Herbal-Extracts Pinit

Image: Shutterstock

You Will Need

A few drops of lemongrass extract OR calendula extract OR witch hazel extract OR grapefruit seed extract

What You Have To Do

Apply the extract available on the rash and leave it on.

How Often You Should Do This

Reapply twice a day.

Why This Works

These herbal extracts are antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory in nature. They treat the infection as well as the symptoms of jock itch (23, 24, 25, 26).

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Jock itch is embarrassing and uncomfortable, but it is treatable as well as avoidable. Choose from the list of simple home remedies for jock itch given above, depending on the severity of your rash, and get quick and easy relief. Below are some frequently asked questions about jock itch.

Expert’s Answers For Readers’ Questions

How to prevent jock itch?

A. Good hygiene

Once you contract jock itch, you will wish you had listened to your mother when she taught you to maintain good hygiene ‘down there’. It’s not too late to learn, though. The affected area will itch a lot more when exposed to heat and sweat. Regular washing with a pH-balanced, non-soap cleanser is the first thing you should try. Avoid using very hot water as it will irritate the affected area. Many non-soap washes are available in the market or at pharmacies.

B. Say no to fancy washing products

Often, jock itch is aggravated by the chemicals found in clothing bleaches, detergents, and fabric conditioners. Avoid using them or switch to a milder formula till the rash clears up. It is best to skip the bleach and fabric conditioner altogether. If you starch your clothes often, try doing without it for a couple of weeks. By eliminating these products one by one, you can find out the miscreant that aggravates your rash and remove it from your routine entirely.

C. Skin-friendly underwear

Brand or no brand, your underwear must serve one most important function. No, it’s not style, making a fashion statement, or gaining attention. Rather, it is to care for and protect your intimate areas from dust, sweat, and rough outer clothing. If your underwear is doing just the opposite – change it! Use underwear that is clean, cotton-based, comfortable, and not too tight. Cotton is the best fabric for underwear as it is organic and hypoallergenic, absorbs sweat, and doesn’t sag too easily or shrink drastically after frequent washing. No wonder your mom always bought underwear with‘100% cotton’ label for you!

D. Strive to be dry

Jock itch becomes itchier in hot, humid conditions. So, if you tend to sweat a lot, focus on keeping the groin clean and dry by taking regular baths and then drying the area completely. Be careful not to rub the groin with the towel. Instead, dab the area with a separate towel till it is dry. As is advised in the case of diaper rash, air dry the area as much as possible. At night, opt for loose pajamas and skip the underwear.

What are jock itch risks?

If left untreated, jock itch can spread all around and also onto your private parts. A secondary infection may develop, which needs medical intervention to be treated effectively.

How long does it take for jock itch to go away?

It can take anywhere from a few days to up to two weeks for the infection to go away with home treatment.

Is jock itch contagious?

Yes, it is contagious. Having skin-to-skin contact with the affected region and sharing underwear and towels or even the same soap can spread the infection.

Is a yeast infection the same as jock itch?

Jock itch is a type of yeast infection. Vaginal yeast infections seen in women are caused by a different type of fungus known as Candida albicans.

Is jock itch a sexually transmitted disease?

Jock itch is not usually considered a sexually transmitted disease as it can also spread through sharing other infected items.

Does hot water hurt or help jock itch?

Using hot water can irritate the rash and increase the itching. Use warm water for showering and washing.

Does shaving help jock itch?

Shaving the pubic areas will keep it clean and dry. It can help reduce the chances of developing a jock itch infection. However, take measures before and after shaving to avoid skin chafing.

Is petroleum jelly safe to use for jock itch?

Non-adultered petroleum jelly can help relieve the itching and keep you from scratching when applied at night before going to sleep.

How do I reduce the darkness of my skin after jock itch infection?

Applying aloe vera gel even after the infection has cleared can help to restore the natural health of your skin and reduce darkness as well.

All of the above-mentioned home remedies for jock itch are very effective in treating and relieving the skin infection. However, nothing beats prevention. By maintaining proper hygiene of the intimate area and wearing comfortable underwear, you can keep jock itch at bay. Additionally, avoid sharing underwear, towels, and bathing soaps as much as possible. Once you catch jock itch, you will be more vulnerable to it in the future.

Note: If the jock itch has progressed to abscesses, you must consult a doctor before using any of these remedies. Consult your doctor immediately if the infection does not get better even after using the home remedies for two weeks.

We hope we could be of help to you with this article. Do let us know which remedy you tried and how it fared.

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Kushneet Kukreja