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Lyclear is a topical cream used to treat scabies, crab lice (or pubic lice) and head lice. It’s available as a cream rinse and as a dermal cream. Lyclear Dermal Cream treats crab lice and scabies in adults (as well as children over the age of 2 months) while Lyclear Cream Rinse treats head lice.

Fill out our quick and simple questionnaire to purchase Lyclear Dermal Cream or Lyclear Cream Rinse online. One of our GPhC-registered prescribers will review your answers and our UK pharmacy will process your order. Orders are shipped by special delivery within 24 hours. 

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This content was reviewed by a clinician on

13 March 2021
dr daniel

Dr Daniel Atkinson

(GP Clinical Lead - GMC No. 4624794) 13 March 2021
Product information

Lyclear is a cream used topically to tackle crab lice and head lice infections, as well as scabies. It contains the active ingredient permethrin, which is an insecticide used to treat parasites. You can acquire Lyclear either as a cream rinse (Lyclear Cream Rinse) which specifically treats head lice, or as a dermal cream (Lyclear Dermal Cream), which treats scabies and crab lice. 

Crab lice, or pubic lice, are miniscule insects that live on the coarse body hair of humans, such as pubic hair. The lice may also be found in underarm or leg hair, facial hair, hair on the chest, back or abdomen, or on rare occasions, the eyelashes and eyebrows. They don’t live in scalp hair. 

Pubic lice can be spread from one person to another via close bodily contact (usually sexual contact). If you think you may have pubic lice, make an appointment with a GP, or go to a sexual health (GUM) clinic. In the event that you’ve contracted pubic lice via sexual contact, you should be tested for other sexually transmitted infections (STIs).

In terms of symptoms, it can take a number of weeks before any signs become apparent. They are the same for men and women, and consist of itching in the areas affected at night-time,  inflammation and tenderness as a result of scratching, black powder in your underwear, and blue or small blood spots on the skin, on the thighs or lower abdomen for instance, which are caused by lice bites. The most prevalent symptom is itching, which is an allergic response to lice saliva, and this is often worse at night when the lice are particularly active.

Adult pubic lice are difficult to spot (but may be visible in any region of the body, with exception to the hair on the head) as they’re only 2mm in length. They’re either yellow-grey in colour or a dusky shade of red, and they have 6 legs. 

Pubic lice lay eggs (nits) in sacs which are firmly attached to hairs, and are pale brown. Once the eggs have hatched, the egg sacs appear white. 

Head lice and nits are extremely common amongst young children and families. They’re transmitted from one person to another through close head-to-head contact. 

Like crab lice, head lice are tiny (up to 3mm long) and can be hard to see on the head. Your head may feel itchy, or as if there’s something moving in your hair. 

You can ascertain whether you have head lice by combing through the hair with a special detection comb. 

Having spotted head lice, treat them immediately. Everyone in the household should be checked and treatment should commence for all those affected at the same time. Children can still attend school with head lice. 

You should try wet combing your hair as a first port of call for treatment. This consists of washing the hair with standard shampoo and conditioner, and then combing the entire head with a detection comb, spreading from the roots to the ends. Short hair typically takes 10 minutes to comb, whilst longer, frizzier, curlier hair usually requires between 20 and 30 minutes.

Wet comb the hair on days 1, 5, 9 and 13 to treat any freshly hatched lice. On day 17, check to see if everyone’s hair is lice-free.

If you have used the wet combing method for 17 days but find that your child or other family members still have head lice, speak to a pharmacist. They may advise you to use specialised treatment that kill head lice in all hair types, such as Lyclear Cream Rinse. Head lice usually die within a day of treatment. Certain lotions and creams include a detection comb to get rid off any dead lice and eggs. 

You may need to repeat the treatment after two weeks in order to tackle freshly hatched lice.

You can buy Lyclear Cream Rinse (detection comb included) from our online pharmacy. Complete our easy-to-use questionnaire and following review from one of our GMC-registered pharmacy prescribers, your item will be dispensed and delivered to you within 24 hours by special courier.

Scabies is a common skin condition caused by a small mite (Sarcoptes scabiei). It can be found in any age group but is particularly prevalent amongst the young and elderly. It isn’t a consequence of poor hygiene.

The parasites responsible for scabies tend to be spread via skin-to-skin contact with someone who’s already affected, or less frequently, through shared clothing, bedding or towels. On average, those impacted have approximately 12 adult mites on their skin, though there can be many more than this in some cases. 

The scabies rash often disperses across the whole body, except the head, and tends to first emerge between the fingers, developing into tiny, red spots. It can however take as long as 8 weeks to become visible on the skin. Elderly people, young children and anyone with a more compromised immune system can also develop a rash on the head and neck. 

All household members should be treated for scabies simultaneously, even in the absence of symptoms. If you have engaged in sexual contact with anyone within the previous 8 weeks, they should also be treated.

While not generally serious in nature, scabies does require treatment. A pharmacy prescriber will advise you to use a lotion or cream, such as Lyclear Dermal Cream. You should always read the instructions closely, and repeat the treatment 2 weeks later. Itching may persist for a few weeks following treatment. 

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Page last reviewed:  13/03/2021

You should read the instructions provided by your prescriber before use, and ensure that you follow the patient information leaflet correctly. 

Take care not to allow Lyclear Dermal Cream and Lyclear Cream Rinse to come into contact with the eyes.

Lyclear Dermal Cream

  1. If using Lyclear Dermal Cream to treat scabies, adults and adolescents over 12 years old should apply up to 30g of cream (equivalent to one tube of 30g). 
  2. Children between the ages of 6 and 12 years should apply up to 15g of cream (equivalent of half a tube of 30g). Children of the age of 2 months to 5 years should apply up to 7.5g of cream (equivalent of one quarter of a tube of 30g). 
  3. There isn’t sufficient data available in the newborns to infants under 2 months of age age group, and so there is no specific, recommended dose. 
  4. The doses stated here are only a guide, and may need to be adjusted to best meet individual patients’ needs and body surface areas.
  5. If using the dermal cream to treat crab lice, adults over 18 should apply up to 30g of cream (equivalent to one 30g tube).
  6. Adults should apply the dermal cream to the whole body. This includes the neck, the palms of the hands and the soles of your feet. Only apply the cream to the head and the face if these areas are affected by scabies (itch mites). 
  7. You should take particular care treating the areas between the fingers and toes (as well as under the finger and toenails). The wrists, elbows, armpits, external genital regions and buttocks should also be treated carefully.
  8. Adults using dermal cream to treat crab lice should check facial hair (beards, moustaches) and eyelashes for any live lice and eggs. Apply the cream to affected facial hair. 
  9. Remove any live lice or eggs found on the eyelashes with tweezers. Do not apply the cream to the eyelashes as it can cause significant irritation.
  10. Children should apply the dermal cream evenly to the whole body, making sure to incorporate the palms of the hands, the soles of the feet, the neck, face, ears and scalp. The eyes and the skin around the mouth should be excluded (as the cream could be licked). 
  11. Please note: Lyclear is only available from for use by adults. If you think your children require treatment, you should visit a pharmacy in person to buy Lyclear. 
  12. Ensure that your child (or children) do not lick the cream from their hands. If required, your child (or children) should wear gloves.
  13. There aren’t findings of sufficient experience amongst infants and toddlers, so children up to 23 months should consequently be treated under close medical supervision only.
  14. Elderly patients (65 years and above) should apply the dermal cream using the same process as adults, but the face, ears and scalp should additionally be treated. Areas of skin around the eyes should be avoided. 
  15. In terms of how long you should use dermal cream for, a single application typically suffices.
  16. The cream should stay on the skin for a minimum of 12 hours and no longer than 24. You should refrain from washing, bathing and showering for this period of time, as this could jeopardise the success of the treatment.
  17. If you have to wash your hands in exceptional circumstances during this window, reapply the cream to the hands and wrists. 
  18. After the minimum 12 hour waiting period, take a shower or wash the skin using soapy water.
  19. Should the condition persist, or if you experience a further infestation, you may need to repeat the treatment after 14 days. 
  20. If an excessive amount of dermal cream is applied, wash it off with warm, soapy water. 
  21. In the event that the cream irritates your skin, speak to a GP. 

Lyclear Cream Rinse

  1. There isn’t sufficient evidence regarding the suitability of Lyclear Cream Rinse in newborns and infants less than 6 months old. As such, you should not use the product without having consulted your doctor first. There is also a lack of data for infant and toddler age groups. Treatment administered to children under 3 years of age should only be issued under close medical supervision.  
  2. Please note: Lyclear is only available from for use by adults. If you think your children require treatment, you should visit a pharmacy in person to buy Lyclear.  
  3. Children should not treat their hair with the cream rinse without adult supervision. 
  4. Do not swallow the cream. If it comes into contact with the eyes, rinse with cold water immediately.
  5. Use a mild shampoo to shampoo the hair. Thoroughly rinse it and dry it with a towel, making sure that the hair is still damp.
  6. Having shaken the bottle of cream rinse thoroughly, apply a sufficient amount of cream rinse to the hair, roots and the scalp. 
  7. Spread the cream through the hair, taking care to disperse it behind the ears and around the back of the neck. Typically you should use the entire contents of the cream to ensure that the hair and the scalp are well coated.
  8. Allow the cream rinse to soak into the hair for 10 minutes.
  9. Rinse the hair thoroughly with water. 
  10. Having rinsed the hair, while the hair is still moist, remove the lice and eggs with the comb supplied. Working from the roots, comb through the hair in segments across the whole head.
  11. Dry the hair as you would ordinarily. 
  12. A single bottle of Lycream Clear Rinse tends to suffice if treating one person with shoulder length hair which is of average thickness. If your hair is particularly thick or long in length, a second bottle may be required. In most cases, however, no more than two bottles will be necessary. 
  13. Should you find that lice are still active 7-14 days after treatment, repeat the course. 
  14. If lice continue to be active following treatment, consult a doctor to explore other treatment options. 
  15. In the event that a single family member needs treatment, other family members should check for lice, but only those with lice should be treated.
  16. If you apply too much cream rinse by accident, thoroughly rinse the affected area with water. 
  17. Should you swallow Lyclear Cream Rinse, seek advice from a doctor or Accident and Emergency Department immediately. 
Page last reviewed:  13/03/2021
Please read the patient information leaflet for this medicine fully before use:
Side effects

Lyclear Dermal Cream side effects

Not everyone will experience side effects, but it’s important to be made aware of them in the event that you are affected. If you have a severe, hypersensitive response to the treatment, seek medical advice from a doctor immediately. See the patient information sheet for more information.

Do not use Lyclear Dermal Cream if you are allergic to permethrin, pyrethrins or any of the other ingredients contained in this treatment. 

If you’re allergic to chrysanthemums or other compositae, consult a doctor prior to use. 

Common (up to 1 in 10 people):

Itching (pruritus), redness of the skin or abnormal sensations on the skin (paraesthesias) such as tingling, pricking, skin burning sensation and dry skin. 

It is worth noting however that these symptoms can manifest as a consequence of the disease itself. 

Rare (up to 1 in 1,000 people):


Very rare (up to 1 in 10,000 people):

Skin lesions (excoriations), inflammation of the hair follicles (folliculitis) and decreased skin pigmentation have been reported.

People who are sensitive or allergic to Lyclear Dermal Cream have reported breathing difficulties when substances from the pyrethrin group were used.

The itching and a skin rash (post-scabies eczema) may endure for up to four weeks following the treatment course. This is due to a reaction to the dead scabies mites. 

(Lyclear Cream Rinse) side effects

You should not use Lyclear Cream Rinse if you are allergic to any of the ingredients contained in the product, or allergic to other pyrethroids.

In the event that you’re allergic to chrysanthemums or other compositae, consult a doctor before use

Lyclear Cream Rinse can produce certain side effects. They are not however common and when they do materialise are typically mild in nature. 

On occasion, irritation of the skin, redness or a rash may develop. Differentiating between side effects and the head lice infestation itself is not always possible.

Taking it with other medications

Lyclear Dermal Cream has not been found to interact with other medicines. You should however avoid using corticosteroids for treatment of skin conditions such as eczema during a course of treatment with dermal cream. 

Corticosteroids have an adverse impact on the body’s natural defence system and may worsen an infestation of crab lice and scabies. 

There is no evidence of Lyclear Cream Rinse interacting with any other medicines. 

Conditions to look out for 

Lyclear Dermal Cream can make symptoms of asthma or eczema worse. 

Lyclear Cream Rinse is suitable for asthmatics, but should you have any concerns, speak to a doctor. 

Pregnancy and breastfeeding

If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, discuss using Lyclear Dermal Cream or Lyclear Cream Rinse with a doctor first.

Driving and using machinery

It’s unlikely that Lyclear Dermal Cream or Lyclear Cream Rinse will have any effect on driving and using machinery. 

Page last reviewed:  13/03/2021
Please read the patient information leaflet for this medicine fully before use:

Can I still drink alcohol?

There’s no evidence to suggest that alcohol interacts with Lyclear.

Will I still be able to drive?

Yes. It’s unlikely that Lyclear Cream Rinse and Lyclear Dermal Cream would have any effect.

Can I use this medication whilst pregnant?

If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, discuss using Lyclear Dermal Cream or Lyclear Cream Rinse with a doctor first.

How do I store it?

Do not store Lyclear Dermal Cream above 25°C. Do not freeze it.

Do not store Lyclear Cream Rinse above 25°C. Keep container in the outer carton.

Am I allergic to anything in the medicine?

Lyclear Dermal Cream consists of the following ingredients: permethrin (5% w/w, active ingredient), coconut oil, glyceryl monostearate, macrogol cetyl ether, cetomacrogol 1000, isopropyl myristate, lanolin alcohols/liquid paraffin mixture, butylated hydroxytoluene (E321), glycerol, formaldehyde solution, carbomer, sodium hydroxide and purified water.

Lyclear Cream Rinse contains the following ingredients: Active substances: permethrin (1% w/w, active ingredient), 20% w/w isopropanol, stearalkonium chloride, cetyl alcohol, ceteth-10 (polyoxyl 10 cetyl ether), hydroxyethylcellulose, hydrolysed animal protein, methyl parahydroxybenzoate (E218), balsam fir canada, propyl parahydroxybenzoate (E216), fragrance 06.070, propylene glycol, sunset yellow (E110), anhydrous citric acid and purified water.

Is it right for me?

If you’re experiencing any symptoms connected with the conditions described above, make an appointment to see your GP, or attend a sexual health clinic for testing, in the case of crab or pubic lice. A doctor or GUM clinic will be able to provide a diagnosis and determine what the best form of treatment is for you.

Page last reviewed:  13/03/2021 is rated 4.9 out of 5 by 3131 customers on TrustPilot!
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