Home > Learn > Tips/Tricks for Hair Pullers & Skin Pickers

How many times have you looked for the answer or solution to stop pulling or picking? Every single one of us has. If you are searching for some relief or solutions to help with your skin picking or hair pulling, below you will find a list of some tips/tricks from community members. Remember, we are all different, and what works for one person, may not for another.

 “I think the best thing to remember is that stopping completely may not happen for you, and to appreciate the days when you don’t pick and be proud of yourself for your accomplishments and not beating yourself up for the bad days.” – Community member Courtney



  • Shower in the dark or with a nightlight. Before and after showering is when I do a lot of picking, but I find if I just leave the lights off, I get out of there much quicker.
  • Wear a hat at home. The minute I get home, I put on a light hat and even sleep with it!
  • Keeping my hands busy / doing other things is really helpful. Mirrors are my worst enemy. So I get ready with a hand held mirror rather than in the bathroom. It’s hard to pick with one hand!
  • I grow my nails to a length where it hurts to pick with them because they bend, and if that doesn’t work I keep them freshly painted as a motivation of not wanting to mess them up.
  • I wear gloves with only the holes cut in the thumb tips (to use my smartphone) and that REALLY works for me.
  • I don’t have any mirrors that I can use hands free, that way picking with them is harder.
  • Knitting or sewing immediately when I sit down on the couch


These are Christina Anderson’s tips that helped get her to being 484 days pull-free. You can contact Christina for more information about her journey here: trichcoach@yahoo.com

See if any of these help you:

1. ASK for help. When you have a trigger, reach out to someone who has been there, and can help you fight it.

2. NEVER be alone, if you can help it. When you are alone, and having a hard time, remember there are always people (like me) who are more than willing to be there for you, especially because we understand.

3. EDUCATE others about your trich/derm. I know it sounds crazy, and extremely hard, but the more people you tell, the less shame you feel. At most, you may get one or two questions, (Usually “doesn’t it hurt?”) and then it’s over. And you can walk away with less weight on your shoulders.

4. FIND your “why”. Why do you want to be pull/pick free? This reason will help you remain focused when you are having your urges.

5. DISCOVER what triggers you to have an urge. Boredom? Stress? Certain people? The more you know about yourself, the better you will be able to deal with the urges. I’ve used this analogy with others- You wouldn’t go to battle without knowing the enemy. Learn your enemy.

6.CELEBRATE the small victories. Because small victories lead to huge accomplishments. I have also used this analogy- If you are running a marathon, you are not going to focus on the 26.2 miles you have to go. Instead, you learn to focus from mile marker to mile marker. That’s what you need to do. Instead of focusing on being pick/pull free forever, let’s start with an hour. Then two. Then a day. You can finish that marathon, but do it little by little.

7. BREATHE. When things get REALLY tough, it helped me by finding a quiet spot (I have 3 kids so that can be tough) and closing my eyes, and just breathing, slowly. Listen to your heartbeat. Listen to the air going in and out of your lungs. While you do this, imagine yourself pick/pull free. The mind is VERY powerful.

8. Don’t strive for perfection. There may be a time when you pull a hair out here and there. But you know what? No one is perfect. Instead remember how far you’ve come, and realize that you have the strength to go even further.