Dermatology Community
53.6k Members
Avatar universal

incredibly itchy skin after shower/shaving- pls help!


I know itchy skin doesn't sound like a big problem, but my legs and arms itch like they were about to fall off everytime I take a shower.  I don't have dry skin and I use Aveeno body lotion everyday to make sure I get enough moisture.  The itching is like an intense tingling only on my arms and legs (mostly on my legs) and it's so bad that sometimes I just want to run yelling into the street.  The itching usually goes away within an hour after taking a shower, but it happens all of the time.  I hope that someone can give me some advice as to how to fix this problem...itching can drive a person crazy!

Thanks everyone.
248 Responses
97676 tn?1340408973
There may be an issue with the soap or clenser you use while showering.  I have extremely sensetive skin myself and had to resort to baby lotion and shampoos to keep me from overdrying my skin.  Many lotions make the skin oily rather than truly moisturize.  Cetaphil is a good lotion, but I use Aveeno baby lotion.  It seems to do the trick.  

What soaps do you use?  Dial AB or Dove, ?? ?
Avatar universal
Also make sure the water is not too hot.
Lukewarm at most.
Keep your showers as short as possible.
In the winter, shower only when necessary.
See if this helps.
Avatar universal
Ya that's a good idea.  I could lower the temperature of the water, although i don't use very hot water to begin with.  I'm going to try some different soaps but I really don't know if that is going to help.  It seems to start itching when I shave...I don't know. It doesn't seem like I can really fix it.  But I will certainly try those suggstions.  If you have anymore, keep them coming!  Thanks a lot!

One thing I find is that it seems to be temperature activated. Coming out of the shower I heat the bathroom with a hair drier and it seems to help. Have a Dr. do a simple high histamine check. (Consists of scratching your arm and observing the reaction over 10 min.) Not a cure but answers some questions. Someone else suggested having a high red blood cell count done. It's just a blood test. Wouldn't hurt.

Avatar universal
I don't have an answer, I just wanted to say that the same thing happens to me when I shave my legs, it takes a long while (hour or so) for it to go away.
Avatar universal
Hello, I have suffered with this for years and have found exactly WHAT it is. It's called Aquagenic Pruritis. Here is the link:

I have searched and searched. I could NOT take a shower without taking a Xanax (thanks mom) about an hour before going into the water! See your doctor/dermatologist. I have been taking asperin and iron supplements, but everyone is different. There is also a Yahoo! group for this disorder, which is usually hereditary. Hope this helps!!
Avatar universal
I have the same problem, scratching at this very moment... We stayed at a Super 8 about 6 months ago and I had the best shower experience I can recall. No itchy skin whatsoever. I believe they have a water softning system that made the difference. We are currently renting a townhouse, but also home searching. My first investment when we move will be a water sofner system.
Hope this helps.
Avatar universal
i just had this happen a few weeks ago - i thought i would lose my mind!  i think the water was too hot.  i also shaved my legs without putting enough soap on them - OMG - horrible.

good luck
Avatar universal
i just had this happen a few weeks ago - i thought i would lose my mind!  i think the water was too hot.  i also shaved my legs without putting enough soap on them - OMG - horrible.

good luck
Avatar universal
I personally have been suffering from this for almost 10 years now. I am a healthy 25 year old female with no children. My biggest health problem is the fact that I have Psoriasis. The only area that affects however is my scalp, I have had no problems elsewhere. When this problem first occurred I had no idea of what it could be. I was a teenager and my parents looked at me like I was insane. I went to the Dr. numerous times, was prescribed several lotions to put on 3 or 4 times a day, but they made my problem worse. I am happy that some of you have found out your triggers, and know how to avoid them. I on the other hand, have had a problem determining what my trigger is. Sometimes I have the problem after I shower, sometimes it's just something that hits during the day. I can't wear shorts because if I do I may come in contact with something that will start the reaction. My boyfriend has gone through the worst of it. When an itching spell comes over me I literally have to shut myself in a room away from him because I get sooooo irritated that I begin to lash out on him for just trying to help me. I've tried everything that could be related to "Aquagenic Pruritis" however it just makes it worse. The only relief I get is placing cold compresses over the worst areas. I have also tried to figure out what the cause of it was. I go back to when I was younger and was told that after shaving, if you put rubbing alcohol over razor burn it would make the razor burn go away, however being the clever teenager I was I would just wipe rubbing alcohol over my whole legs hoping to beat the razor burn. Shortly after this is when I first noticed my problem, however it wasn't because I had dry skin. The Dr.'s I went to told me that my skin was healthy and didn't understand why that alone would bring on this effect. For me, I notice a dramatic change when I'm cold. It's usually the heat and humidity that brings on the itch, but when I get cold, or goosebumps it seems to help. It feels as though my leg hairs and trying so hard to push their way through the skin on my legs. My next attempt at relief is to get laser hair removal to see if maybe it is mostly from my leg hairs. I'm not against trying anything and everything. As I stated I've lived with this for about 10 years and I am so ready to be done with it. I would love to wear shorts again, or go on water rides at amusement parks or SHOWER without fear.     I hope that someday soon someone figures this out and fixes it. I am happy to know that I am not the only one and that I am not going crazy or that it's not all in my head, but I am also sad to hear that I am not the only one. I hate to know that there are others that feel as badly as I do. This is not something I would wish on my worst enemy. The nights I try to fall asleep but can't because I just feel like ripping my skin right off the muscle, the days I am afraid to go work out in fear of sweating and causing the itch, the times with friends I am afraid to go to the pool or to the beach even.. which is horrible because I live in Florida.. oh and B.T.W. I saw somewhere people were trying to figure out if it was a location thing. I grew up in Ohio and lived in a house with a water softener and still had this problem.. I've been to hotel rooms and showered.. still have the problem.. I've had the problem in most every place I go. I apologize for the lengthy post, it's just this is the first time I have felt as if others feel the same as myself.

Avatar universal
I just began to itch on my lower legs after a showers and about at the same time I had a over growth of a natural fungi called Candida 'mainly on my scrotum'.  I'm running my own test to see if the 2 are related.  It makes good sense that they are after all the research I've done on the fungi.  If you have the will power try to eat vegitarian for 3 weeks and see if that helps.  Cut out all sugar ,  this will starve out the candida and I hope cure a few other problems im having.

Avatar universal
I have had a problem withis in the past as well, although not as severe.  I now use a water softener and olive oil based soap (can't remember the name).  Hope this helps.
Avatar universal
The name of the soap is  neolia.  Made a big difference.
Have an Answer?
Top Dermatology Answerers
Learn About Top Answerers
Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
Learn to identify and prevent bites from summer’s most common pests.
Doctors argue for legislation to curb this dangerous teen trend in the latest Missouri Medicine report.
10 ways to keep your skin healthy all winter long
How to get rid of lumpy fat on your arms, hips, thighs and bottom
Diet “do’s” and “don’ts” for healthy, radiant skin.
Images of rashes caused by common skin conditions