6 Best Soaps For Keratosis Pilaris (2024), As Per An Expert – Buying Guide

Soaps that gently exfoliate dry and scaly skin and leave it moisturized and smooth.

Medically reviewed by Patricia Gaile Espinosa, MD Patricia Gaile Espinosa Patricia Gaile EspinosaMD facebook_icontwitter_iconlinkedin_iconinsta_icon
Written by , Commerce Editor Shiboli Chakraborti Commerce Editor Experience: 4 years
Edited by , Associate Commerce Editor Aditi Naskar Associate Commerce Editor Experience: 5 years
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Keratosis Pilaris or KP are red bumps on the human body, also known as ‘chicken skin.’ KP is caused by excessive keratin buildup around the pores or the hair follicles, coupled with dehydrated skin and lack of exfoliation. But fret not, as the best soap for Keratosis Pilaris can help you get clear, soft skin with regular usage.

Generally, the red bumps show up on your upper arms, thighs, butt, and sometimes on your face. Certain active ingredients in soaps, like salicylic acid, lactic acid, or glycolic acid, act as chemical exfoliants for the skin to help remove the keratin buildup. Unlike regular comedones, KP appears as constant goosebumps on your skin. Although it is not a serious threat to one’s wellbeing, it can get itchy if your skin gets extremely dry. In this article, we have listed the best soaps for Keratosis Pilaris that gently exfoliate and moisturize your skin. So, go ahead and check them out.

Top Picks
Best Hydrating:CeraVe SA Body Wash For Rough & Bumpy Skin
Price on Amazon
Best Therapeutic:aspen kay Dead Sea Mud & Charcoal Soap Bar
Price on Amazon
Price on Walmart
Best Exfoliating:Mario Badescu A.H.A. Botanical Body Soap
Price on Amazon
Price on Walmart
Best For UV Protection:ReTone Exfoliating Cleanser
Price on Amazon
Best Anti-Inflammatory:Botanic Tree Glycolic Acid KP Exfoliating Body Scrub
Price on Amazon
Price on Walmart
Best For Sensitive Skin:Murad AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser
Price on Amazon

What Is Keratosis Pilaris?

Keratosis Pilaris, commonly referred to as ‘Chicken skin’ or KP, is a harmless skin condition often found in 50%-80% of adults. Purvisha Patel, M.D., notes that “KP is a keratin defect that prevents the skin from exfoliating, resulting in the keratin forming plugs over the hair follicles causing a prickly feel and appearance of the skin – like a nutmeg grater.” It is caused by excessive keratin build-up around hair follicles. These tiny bumps can sprout on your upper arms, buttocks, cheeks, and even on thighs. Though it does not lead to any serious health complications, it can be itchy in winters and often seen in people with dry skin or eczema.

Despite being harmless, it’s quite annoying as it affects your confidence. Would you like to know more about this? Keep reading!

What Causes Keratosis Pilaris?

This common skin condition is caused due to keratin build-up in the hair follicles. The build-up blocks the pores and triggers bump sprouts. Lack of moisturization or dry skin can worsen the condition. In some cases, it naturally clears up when one reaches 30 years of age.

Dealing with bumpy and itchy skin is not a problem anymore. Here is our list of the 6 best soaps for keratosis pilaris for clear, smooth and soft skin. Take a look!

6 Best Soap For Keratosis Pilaris

1. Best Hydrating:CeraVe SA Body Wash For Rough & Bumpy Skin

Annoyed by rough, bumpy chicken skin? Try this dermatologist’s developed body wash from CeraVe for treating keratosis pilaris. This dermatologist-recommended skin care brand uses high-quality ingredients in all its products. The ceramides in the formula restore the skin barrier to make it silky, and smooth. And patented MVE technology powered with hyaluronic acid provides 24-hour hydration to your rough skin. Niacinamide and salicylic acid calm and soothe irritation and help in eliminating dead skin cells. Moreover, CeraVe SA body wash is free from harsh microbeads that can irritate your skin. Nicole, a lifestyle blogger and content marketer, feels that this body wash is a great buy. She exclaims, “Cerave has been a godsend. From a formula perspective, Cerave has better ingredients. The ingredients work together to not only tackle body acne but it includes ingredients that reduce irritation and balance the skin. … Cerave’s SA Body Wash lathers nicely and doesn’t leave my skin incredibly dry. … My skin is also noticeably softer immediately after each use. … Cerave’s body wash is a gentle formulation I’d recommend for anyone dealing with mild body acne (i).”

Skin Type: Oily, Sensitive, Dry | Product Dimensions: 1.56 x 2.88 x 6.31 inches | Weight: 11.84 Ounces

Key Ingredients: Ceramides (1, 3, 6 II), Niacinamide, Hyaluronic acid, and Salicylic acid


  • 24-hours hydration
  • Non-comedogenic
  • Non-drying
  • Non-irritating
  • Fragrance-free soap
  • Paraben-free
  • Microbeads-free
  • Developed by dermatologists


  • Causes breakouts
  • May cause allergic reaction
  • Expensive

2. Best Therapeutic:aspen kay Dead Sea Mud & Charcoal Soap Bar

Aspen Kay Naturals Handmade Dead Sea Mud Soap Bar Image: Aspen Kay Naturals

Want to enjoy a detoxifying bath in Dead Sea mud? Well, you don’t need to land upon the Jordan Rift for that, as aspen kay has got it packed for you in its Dead Sea Mud & Charcoal Soap Bar. It is one of the best organic soaps for keratosis pilaris infused with mineral-rich dead sea mud and activated charcoal. This hand-crafted soap is rich in organic oils like olive oil, castor oil, sunflower oil, and 21 other minerals that nourish the skin. Additionally, the organic unrefined shea butter ensures deep moisturization and helps build the protective barrier of your skin. Besides, this vegan body soap offers a refreshing treat due to the presence of essential oils, lemongrass, peppermint, and eucalyptus that makes your skincare rituals way more enjoyable. Watch this YouTube review that includes the reviewer’s experience of the product to achieve smoother skin.

Skin Type: All, Combination, Sensitive, Dry, Normal | Product Dimensions: 3.2 x 2.5 x 1 inches | Weight: 4 Ounces

Key Ingredients: Dead Sea mud, Activated charcoal, Lemongrass, Peppermint, Shea butter, Olive oil, and Coconut oil


  • Clears pores
  • Exfoliating
  • Non-drying soap
  • Psoriasis-friendly
  • Eczema-friendly
  • Cruelty-free
  • Not tested on animals
  • Vegan
  • Gluten-free
  • Great for oily skin
  • Refreshing fragrance
  • Affordable
  • Comes with money back guarantee


  • Causes breakouts
  • Itchiness

Why We Think It's Worth Buying

This product has received 2,675 reviews from customers on Amazon, indicating its popularity and reliability.

3. Best Exfoliating:Mario Badescu A.H.A. Botanical Body Soap

Revitalize your skin after every shower with this vegan body wash from Mario Badescu infused with alpha hydroxyl acid. This best-selling product is designed to treat bumpy skin issues with potent natural ingredients. This skin-softening soap contains AHA, papaya, and grapefruit extract to exfoliate dead skin cells, making your skin smooth. The ginseng, linden flower extract, and oatmeal protein lock in natural moisture and slow down premature aging. This natural botanical extract-infused soap not just exfoliates but ensures acne-free, clear, and flawless skin. Joan, a beauty blogger, deemed this product excellent for people with acne issues. She exclaims, “I love it. I sometimes get acne on my back and ever since I have started using this I have not seen any new acne develop. It is not harsh on my skin and I do not feel dry and itchy after I use it. I highly recommend this product for anyone who has scarring on the body and would like to smooth out the texture of the skin (ii).” This video offers more insight into the qualities of the product through the tester’s experience.

Skin Type: All | Product Dimensions: 3 x 3 x 3 inches | Weight: 0.56 Ounces

Key Ingredients: Grapefruit, AHA, Ginseng, and Linden


  • Non-drying soap
  • Water-based formula
  • No breakout
  • Lathers well
  • Works as anti-acne cleanser
  • Antiaging benefits
  • Vegan
  • Paraben-free
  • Gluten-free
  • Refreshing smell
  • No animal testing


  • Expensive

protip_icon Caution
Avoid rubbing your skin too much with loofah or pumice stone because it can aggravate the skin and make the KP worse.

CeraVe SA Body Wash For Rough & Bumpy Skin
Best Hydrating
aspen kay Dead Sea Mud & Charcoal Soap Bar
Best Therapeutic
Mario Badescu A.H.A. Botanical Body Soap
Best Exfoliating
Skin Type Oily, Sensitive, Dry All, Combination, Sensitive, Dry, Normal All
Dimensions 1.56 x 2.88 x 6.31 inches 3.2 x 2.5 x 1 inches 3 x 3 x 3 inches
Weight 11.84 Ounces 4 Ounces 0.56 Ounces

4. Best For UV Protection:ReTone Exfoliating Cleanser

Natural exfoliating body wash from ReTone infused with glycolic acid makes this a great option to treat keratosis pilaris because it offers gentle exfoliation. The gentle apricot microbeads in the cleanser scrub off dead skin cells, boost cellular regeneration, and support collagen and elastin production. This restorative soap is exclusively designed to get rid of rough bumps and flaky skin, making the skin soft and supple. Benzophenone-4 in the formula protects the skin from UV rays and fight visible signs of aging to keep wrinkles, stretch marks, and fine lines at bay. Additionally, this gentle product also ensures an even and brighter skin tone by improving blood circulation.

Skin Type: Acne Prone,Dry

Key Ingredients: Glycolic acid, Benzophenone-4, and Apricot powder


  • Reduce wrinkles
  • Diminishes dark spots
  • Moisturizes
  • Offers sun protection
  • Non-greasy formula
  • Paraben-free
  • Phthalate-free
  • Value for money
  • Smells great
  • Cruelty-free
  • No animal testing


  • Expensive
  • Can cause skin peeling

5. Best Anti-Inflammatory:Botanic Tree Glycolic Acid KP Exfoliating Body Scrub


This glycolic acid-infused body wash unclogs your pores and renders even smooth skin while getting rid of excess keratin. Besides fighting acne and erasing bumps, this exfoliating body wash refreshes and nourishes due to the presence of hydrating Ylang Ylang. And it keeps redness and bumps at bay, thanks to soothing tea tree oil. This calming soap is rich in anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial agents extracted from willow bark, thyme, aloe vera, and lavender that fight acne, clear pores, and soothe irritation. Moreover, they revitalize dull skin by scrubbing off dead skin cells and boosting collagen production.

Skin Type: Normal, Dry, Oily, Acne Prone, and Sensitive | Package Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 6.73 x 3.07 x 1.93 inches; 6 Ounces

Key Ingredients: Glycolic acid, Tea tree oil, Willow bark, Aloe vera, Thyme, Lavender and Ylang Ylang


  • Reduces sun damage
  • Not tested on animals
  • Hydrating
  • Protects from environmental aggressors
  • Clears pores
  • Lathering soap
  • Vegan
  • Cruelty-free
  • Sulfate-free
  • Smells incredible


  • Heighten skin sensitivity

protip_icon Did You Know?
People facing issues like dry skin and eczema have more chances of developing keratosis pilaris.

6. Best For Sensitive Skin:Murad AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser

Clinically proven ingredients and innovative formulation make this body wash from Murad one of the best solutions for treating Keratosis pilaris. The intensive triple-action formula provides intense exfoliation that polishes dry and dull skin that adds radiance. The salicylic, lactic, and glycolic acid, an effective concoction of chemical exfoliants, improve cell generation and makes your skin smooth and soft. The jojoba beads scrub off dead skin cells without stripping your skin dry and open the path for hydration. Moreover, sodium PCA prevents moisture loss and renders a youthful glow. Besides, AHA and BHA penetrate deep into the skin without clogging your pores, preventing KP flares.

Package Dimensions : 4.57 x 2.17 x 1.42 inches| Weight: 2.01 Ounces

Key Ingredients: Salicylic, Lactic Acid, Glycolic Acid, and Jojoba beads


  • Sulfate-free
  • Phthalate-free
  • Gluten-free
  • Mineral oil-free
  • Formaldehyde-free
  • Oxybenzone-free
  • Petroleum-free
  • Promotes cell turnover
  • Does not clothes pores
  • Great for sensitive skin


  • None
Our Tester's Experience

"This cleanser cleanses my skin without leaving it dry. I love how it has faded my dark spots and lends my skin a natural glow. My skin has become smooth and soft after consistent use of this product. I love that it does not irritate my sensitive skin."

Why We Think It's Worth Buying

This product is so liked by shoppers that it has gained over 324 great reviews on Amazon.

*The prices provided in this article are based on the latest available information. However, they may vary due to changes in pricing by the seller and/or promotional offers.

Dr. Patricia Gaile Espinosa, MD, Medical & Esthetic Dermatology, says, “Salicylic acid is classified as a beta-hydroxy acid (BHA). It is also used as a peeling agent causing desquamation of the outer layer of the skin. It is less irritating than AHA’s.”

Though the underlying causes are yet to be discovered for a complete cure, some treatments can slow down KP’s severity. Here’s how you can keep your skin bump-free!

How To Get Rid Of Keratosis Pilaris?

  • Warm Bath: Take a short bath in warm water to unclog or loosen pores. Rub your skin with a stiff brush to potentially remove bumps. Limit your time in the bath to avoid stripping your skin dry.
  • Exfoliate: Daily exfoliation improves skin appearance by removing unwanted bumps. Body soaps composed of chemical exfoliating like glycolic, lactic, and salicylic acid effectively unclog pores without aggravating your skin. You can also use formulas with physical exfoliants. However, it is best to opt for dermatologist-recommended or clinically-tested products. You can also use loofah or pumice stone with your soap or body wash and gently massage it on the skin for better exfoliation.
  • Apply Hydrating Lotion: Post bath, apply hydrating lotions to keep your skin moisturized and encourage cell turnover. Moisturizes tame irritation in your recently exfoliated skin due to and helps it to calm down. Lotions with Alpha Hydroxy Acid, glycerin, or rose water soften the bumps and soothe inflammation.
  • Avoid Wearing Tight Clothes: Wearing tight clothes may boost friction, further increasing skin irritation and redness.
  • Use Humidifiers: Humidifiers are a great option to add moisture to your skin. They release moisture into the room air, keeping your skin hydrated while preventing and relieving itchy flare-ups.
  • Apply Apple Cider Vinegar: Apple cider vinegar is a natural astringent with the innate ability to unclog and shrink pores. As a result, it keeps build-ups at bay, prevents dead skin cells from clogging your hair follicle, and offers anti-inflammatory benefits to soothe skin discomfort.

Although KP is harmless, your skin needs hygienic soaps to deal with it gently. Here is a buying guide that can help you with the job.

How To Choose The Best Soap For Keratosis Pilaris?

  • Exfoliating Ingredients: Keratosis Pilaris treatment demands effective exfoliation, and for that, the body soap must contain any of these three most important ingredients – glycolic acid, lactic acid, or salicylic acid. These chemical exfoliants not just remove dead cells but also unclog pores and reduce inflammation.
  • UV Protection: After exfoliation, skin becomes sensitive to sunburn. Therefore, the body soap must provide necessary sun protection to prevent worsening for KP.
  • Nourishment: Often, deep exfoliation tends to dry out the skin. Therefore, soap for KP must ensure a boost of hydration to make skin soft and supple.
  • Anti-Inflammatory Properties: Keratosis pilaris increases redness and irritation, and further exfoliation may make skin dry. Ingredients like coconut oil or olive oil are rich in anti-inflammatory agents that help deal with inflammation and irritation.

Infographic: Soaps For Keratosis Pilaris: Key Ingredients And Benefits

Keratosis pilaris can be very unpleasant in daily life. Regular bath soaps may irritate the skin further and accentuate this skin condition. But using mild soaps exclusively formulated to treat this condition can help smooth the skin. Check the below infographic to learn about the key ingredients in these soaps and their benefits.

Soaps For Keratosis Pilaris: Key Ingredients And Benefits (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

Get the high-quality PDF version of this infographic.

Download Infographic in PDF version

The Bottom Line

Keratosis Pilaris commonly occur due to keratin build-up over the skin. This KP appears like red bumps. However, soaps formulated with glycolic acid, salicylic acid, and lactic acid can remove keratin build-up by exfoliating the skin. Although this condition does not cause serious health issues, it might irritate the skin due to dry winds. The best soaps for Keratosis Pilaris listed above provide day-long hydration, eliminate dead cells, soothe irritated skin, and nourish it. In addition, some products lock in the natural moisture and combat aging signs. The CeraVe SA Body Wash For Rough & Bumpy Skin offers a dermatologist’s developed formula that soothes and hydrates the skin, while the Murad AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser works wonders in preventing KP flares and enhancing skin radiance. The Botanic Tree Glycolic Acid KP Exfoliating Body Scrub effectively fights against acne and removes dead skin cells. These emollient soaps provide UV protection and reduce inflammation. It would be of great help to invest in soaps formulated with chemical-free ingredients and avoid those that irritate your skin.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is goat-milk soap good for keratosis pilaris?

Yes. Goat milk’s proteins and fatty acids provide an excellent moisture barrier, encouraging deep hydration of your skin. Goat milk contains anti-inflammatory qualities that can help lessen the irritation and redness associated with keratosis pilaris and other sensitive skin disorders.

Can African black soap help with keratosis pilaris?

Yes, African black soap helps with keratosis pilaris. They have anti-inflammatory and moisturizing properties that can help soothe irritated skin.

Is sulfur soap good for keratosis pilaris?

When sulfur soap is mixed with salicylic acid, another keratolytic substance with anti-inflammatory qualities, you get a mild, yet highly efficient treatment for KP.

Is an antibacterial soap good for keratosis pilaris?

Keratosis Pilaris is not caused by bacteria or fungus. So, antibacterial soaps won’t be useful. Instead, use mild soaps with anti-inflammatory properties if you have keratosis pilaris.

Should I exfoliate my skin if I have keratosis pilaris?

Keratosis pilaris-affected skin can be gently exfoliated with a loofah, buff puff, or washcloth.

What age does keratosis pilaris go away?

Keratosis pilaris usually fades away by the age of 30.

Why Trust StyleCraze?

The author of this article, Shiboli Chakraborti, is a certified skincare specialist who loves experimenting with different skincare products. She understands that one must be careful in selecting soaps if one is experiencing keratosis pilaris. She carefully read through reviews by customers and dermatologists online and curated this list of choicest and top-rated soaps for keratosis pilaris. These soaps are highly recommended by dermatologists and made of ingredients such as salicylic acid that gently exfoliate the keratin buildup in your skin.


Articles on StyleCraze are backed by verified information from peer-reviewed and academic research papers, reputed organizations, research institutions, and medical associations to ensure accuracy and relevance. Read our editorial policy to learn more.

    (i) Simply Candi Nicole
    (ii) missmakeupjoan’s blog

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