11 celebrities who have been open about having psoriasis

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celebs with psoriasis
Kim Kardashian, Jonathan Van Ness, and Cara Delevingne all have psoriasis. Karwai Tang, Don Arnold, and Emma McIntyre / Getty
  • Many celebrities have psoriasis, an autoimmune disease that causes itchy and dry skin.

  • Reality stars Kim Kardashian and Stassi Schroeder are among those who've spoken about it.

  • LeAnn Rimes and Jonathan Van Ness have encouraged people to stop hiding their psoriasis.

  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

Kim Kardashian has been outspoken about living with psoriasis.

kim kardashian 2020
Kim Kardashian. George Pimentel/Getty Images

Kardashian had her first flare-up at 25, and she talked about it on an episode of "Keeping Up With the Kardashians" in 2011. She explained that it usually starts on her legs and then spreads to the rest of her body.

"To make myself feel better, I lay out all my insecurities before we start a shoot in hopes that no one will be focused on that. I just want to do fun and artsy things," she said on the show in 2011. "There's nothing I can do about [my psoriasis], so there's no reason why I should feel uncomfortable."

Her mom, Kris Jenner, also has psoriasis.

kris jenner 2020
Kris Jenner. Kevin Winter/Getty Images

While it's possible to have psoriasis even if you have no family history of the disease, having a family member with it does increase your risk.

Kim Kardashian has spoken about her mother's battle with the disease. In an open letter on Poosh, Kim wrote that Kris was diagnosed with psoriasis at 30.

"She had it in her scalp and all over her body, and I'd see it all the time," she wrote, adding: "Getting UV rays directly on the spots really helped my mom."

According to the National Psoriasis Foundation, UVB light therapy can be a way to treat psoriasis when administered by a dermatologist. Kim Kardashian noted that UV was not a successful treatment for her own psoriasis.

Jonathan Van Ness posted an unedited photo of his psoriasis on Instagram.

jonathan van ness jvn
Jonathan Van Ness. Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images for IMDb

Van Ness said his first psoriasis breakout happened when he was 23, and doctors thought he had an infection, so they put him on antibiotics for months.

When he was doing a photo shoot for his show "Queer Eye" in 2018, he had a flare-up. Instead of editing it out of the picture, he decided to leave his "psoriasis & my body unretouched."

"I was going to start FaceTuning the spots out, but then I was like, 'No, I'm just gonna post it,'" Van Ness told Allure in 2018. "Your body is fierce, it's cute, it's fine, and the more people that know about psoriasis, the more you'll stop having to tell cute guys about it when you take your top off."

Model and actor Cara Delevingne said people didn't want to touch her backstage at runway shows because of her psoriasis.

cara delevingne_Kevin Winter : Staff_

In 2015, Delevingne told The Times that the stress of the model ling industry led to her first psoriasis flare-up. According to the report, people backstage would paint her body with foundation before she went on the catwalk.

"People would put on gloves and not want to touch me because they thought it was, like, leprosy or something," Delevingne told The Times in 2015. Psoriasis is not contagious.

Delevingne decided to leave the modeling industry to reduce her stress and anxiety, but she has since returned to modeling.

LeAnn Rimes has encouraged people to stop hiding their psoriasis.

LeAnn Rimes

Rimes was diagnosed with psoriasis at 2 years old, and at one point in her childhood, 80% of her body was covered in lesions. When she became a famous musician, Rimes said it became difficult to hide her outbreaks.

"As I became a performer, I went to great lengths to hide my psoriasis," she told the National Psoriasis Foundation in 2009, stating she often wore long dresses and pants. "Performing on stage when I was experiencing a flare was difficult. My skin would crack and bleed, causing pain and discomfort."

In 2009, Rimes started the "Stop Hiding from Psoriasis" campaign and encouraged people with psoriasis to show it off proudly.

Cyndi Lauper's psoriasis eventually affected her singing voice.

cyndi lauper
Cyndi Lauper. Neilson Barnard / Getty Images

In 2015, Lauper told People that she has had psoriasis since 2010. It started on her scalp after having her hair bleached and eventually spread to the rest of her body.

"It was so bad, I felt like the Elephant Man," Lauper said, explaining she experienced chills and a weakened immune system. It then started affecting her singing voice, which prompted Lauper to stop singing for a while.

"I felt depressed and I felt horrible," she said. Eventually, the singer realized she wasn't alone.

"You don't have to suffer in silence or live in pain," Lauper told People in 2015. "It's not just a rash. It's a disease."

"What Not to Wear's" Stacy London says she uses fashion as a tool to help in her battle with psoriasis.

Stacy London
Stacy London. Astrid Stawiarz / Getty

London started experiencing psoriasis at 4 years old, and it got worse by the time she was 11. Throughout her childhood, she was bullied for her disease. Eventually, she found her love for fashion and that helped her overcome her shame.

Now, she uses fashion to help alleviate her symptoms, by choosing breathable, loose clothing.

"It's about taking vanity out of fashion and turning it into a weapon in your arsenal and making it about being who you want to be," she told Healthline in 2017. "This is not just about style, but using style to counteract how you're feeling because of a disease or condition, or something as benign as gaining a few pounds."

"Vanderpump Rules" star Stassi Schroeder has also been open about her psoriasis.

Stassi Schroeder Erin Fetherston New York City Fashion Week 2017
Stassi Schroeder. Astrid Stawiarz / Getty

In 2018, Schroeder wrote an essay for Today.com, detailing her experience with the disease.

"I developed psoriasis six years ago," she wrote. "It's annoying. There's really no way to control it and it comes and goes whenever it pleases. It's like a douche-y boyfriend. You know what I mean? Right now, if you wiped away all of my makeup, you would see red patches all over my face."

She goes on to write that people need to embrace their psoriasis.

"The advice I would give to anyone who has psoriasis is to let go of any anxiety about it because there's nothing you can do," Schroeder wrote in the essay. "If you stress about it, it's only going to make it worse because it's brought on by stress a lot of the time. And what's the point? You're just going to be miserable."

Comedian Jon Lovitz said he was able to take control of his psoriasis after working with a dermatologist.

Jon Lovitz
Jon Lovitz. Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images

In 2018, Lovitz wrote an essay on HuffPost, explaining he has had psoriasis for 10 years, which started as little red dots on his arms.

"On more than one occasion I felt the burden of my psoriasis," he wrote. "I was often invited to events or pool parties where I opted not to go because I felt too embarrassed to even unbutton my shirt. During the summer, I would be on-stage at my comedy club in Universal CityWalk in Los Angeles wearing long-sleeve shirts and jackets to cover my skin."

After speaking to a dermatologist and finding the right skin regimen for him, Lovitz said he is in "full control of my symptoms."

"On a less serious note, why be embarrassed about psoriasis? Nobody is perfect, right? Trust me, I would know. I make fun of people for a living, remember?" Lovtiz wrote.

Actress La La Anthony says she's "never let psoriasis get in the way" of her dreams.

La La Anthony
La La Anthony. Raymond Hall / Getty

Anthony said she noticed her first flare-up on her scalp and behind her ears. She started wearing long sleeves, hats, and styling her hair a certain way to hide the symptoms. Eventually, she said that baking soda helped reduce her flare-ups because it's "gentle enough on my sensitive skin, which is really hard to find when you do have psoriasis," she told People in 2017.

While some psoriasis patients have reported a reduction in redness and itchiness after bathing in baking soda, a 2019 study found no evidence that it reduces psoriasis symptoms. Dermatologists recommend taking cold showers, applying ice packs, or keeping your lotions in the refrigerator to help soothe itching.

Anthony has also spoken out about not letting psoriasis hold her back.

"I've had this for a long time and I've still been able to go on and I've still been able to do all these amazing things, and I've never let psoriasis get in the way of any of that," she told People in 2015. "You don't have to be ashamed, you don't have to hide in the closet because of it, you can still live life and do amazing things."

Director and producer Eli Roth said he used his psoriasis as inspiration for a movie.

Eli roth
Eli Roth. Daniele Venturelli / Getty

"When I was 22, I had this horrible psoriasis outbreak," Roth told the BBC in 2003. "It was all over my legs, I couldn't walk because my legs were cracked and bleeding."

He said he also experienced breakouts on his face. Ultimately, he explained, he used his experiences for inspiration when directing "Cabin Fever" in 2002.

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