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How to Treat Tinea Versicolor Inexpensively With Selsun Blue Shampoo

Jacob is an activist & writer living in D.C. He loves sharing his unique expertise on a wide-range of health & lifestyle topics.

How Selsun Blue helped my skin rash

How Selsun Blue helped my skin rash

A Strange and Itchy Rash on My Torso Made Me Nervous

The summer after my sophomore year of college, I was working at a theme park while on break when one day I began to notice my chest and back were very itchy. After work, I took off my shirt to examine my skin in the mirror, and I noticed that I had a strange looking rash on my chest with tan and blotchy white spots. I thought perhaps it would clear up on its own, but much to my dismay it did not and continued to spread to new areas of my skin. I tried applying a hydrocortisone cream I had in my house to the rash, but that did not seem to help at all. Alarmed, I scheduled an appointment with a dermatologist.

My Dermatologist Eased My Fears

When I went in for my doctor’s appointment, the physician quickly put my mind at ease. Within just a few seconds of looking over my scratchy rash, she told me in was actually a very common skin condition called tinea versicolor. She explained that the rash was caused by the overgrowth of a harmless fungus on my skin, and that the best treatment was a topical anti-fungal medication. She was going to write me a prescription for an anti-fungal cream, but when I explained I did not have prescription insurance coverage at that time, she told me that the active ingredient in the cream she was going to prescribe could also be found over-the-counter.

My doctor told me to let the soap sit on my skin before washing it off

My doctor told me to let the soap sit on my skin before washing it off

A Unique OTC Treatment Is Cheap & Easy to Use

“Are you ready to look like a Smurf?” My doctor asked this jokingly, but I was slightly confused. She went on to explain that the active ingredient I needed to treat my rash was selenium sulfide, and the best way to get that in an OTC formulation was in the form of Selsun Blue anti-dandruff shampoo. The dermatologist said I could apply the Selsun Blue shampoo directly to my skin in the areas that were affected by the tinea versicolor. She recommended that I do this while my skin was dry before getting in the shower. I just needed to apply a thin layer of the shampoo across my skin, wait for 10-15 minutes, then get in the shower and bathe as normal to wash off the shampoo.

She did caution against leaving the product on my skin for too much time. My doctor advised that leaving the shampoo on my skin for extra time would not cure my rash any faster, but it could cause skin redness and irritation.

I also quickly learned to stay in my bathroom while the shampoo was on my skin. One day, I tried to do some dishes while waiting to take my shower, and I ended up with blue spots of shampoo on the carpet between my bathroom and kitchen.

This is the shampoo I used to treat my rash.

My Skin Rash Was Cleared in About a Month

My doctor recommended using the dandruff shampoo treatments on my skin every other day until my rash was completely gone. Within just a few treatments, I noticed the itchiness caused by the tinea versicolor was gone, and the rash was already much lighter. It took about a month of treatments every other day until my skin was completely clear.

To prevent the rash from recurring, my doctor told me I could continue with the topical anti-fungal treatments once per week as a preventative measure. I am happy to report that I have been doing this and my tinea versicolor has not returned and is no longer a problem for me. The prescription cream my doctor was going to prescribe cost more than $100. I am so glad I asked about other treatment options. Selsun Blue can be found for less than $10 at most major retailers, and treating my rash with this option saved me a lot of money.

More Information About Tinea Versicolor

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.

© 2022 Jacob McGee