Learn how to take care of your hands to prevent dry skin on your hands!
One of the most often used parts of our bodies, our hands are generally resilient to the elements. However, daily chores, exposure to cleaning products, and environmental factors can take a toll on our hands.
While not necessarily a serious medical condition, dry hands can be irritating and even painful when left untreated. Normal tasks like dishwashing, writing, or even typing out a message can be unpleasant with dry skin on your hands.
Our skin consists of three layers: the surface (or epidermis), the underlying layer (or dermis), and subcutaneous tissue. If the epidermis does not retain enough moisture or if its protective layer gets stripped away, it can lead to the following:
Dry hands are typically caused by three main factors:
Overwashing of your hands, especially if you find yourself washing your hands much more than before. Soaps and sanitizers work by removing the lipid membranes of bacteria. Unfortunately, this same process also strips away our skin’s own lipid barrier.
If you find yourself washing your hands and using hand sanitizer often, you may notice that your hands are dry and itchy. Daily chores, like dishwashing and house cleaning, can also expose your hands to chemicals and ingredients that can dry out your hands. Irritating soaps, disinfectants, and other cleaning products can strip away the oils that make up your skin’s protective barrier.
Common skincare ingredients like retinol, glycolic acid, and salicylic acid help your skin in various ways, but can also dry out your skin. If you think your current products might be to blame, look for any drying or irritating ingredients in your products.
Hot water from the sink or shower can irritate your skin and strip away natural oils more quickly than cold or lukewarm water. To prevent dry skin, keep your showers short and avoid scorching hot showers.
On the other side of the temperature range, cold weather can also lead to dryness on your hands. Winter weather tends to mean dry and cold air, which can remove moisture from your skin. When your skin is exposed to extreme temperature changes, be sure to moisturize your hands to protect them from drying environmental conditions.
The primary cause of dry hands is lack of moisture, so proper hydration and moisture retention are key to restoring your skin’s tone and texture. Here are our top tips for caring for your hands and restoring moisture to dry hands:
Treating dry skin is good for your hands, but prevention is even better. Here’s how you can avoid getting dry hands and create your personal hand moisturizing routine.
Opt for a moisturizing soap or liquid hand wash when washing your hands. If you wash your hands multiple times a day, avoid using scorching hot water as it can dry out your hands. Instead, use cold or lukewarm water.
Unlike many moisturizers, wet skin moisturizers are designed to be applied to wet skin. These types of moisturizers are water-activated, so after washing your hands, don’t completely dry them. Apply moisturizer while still your hands are slightly damp to better lock in moisture.
Use gloves when doing the dishes, cleaning the house, or any activity that exposes your hands to household disinfectants and other chemicals. When you’re done, wash your hands to remove any leftover cleaning products and apply moisturizer to prevent dryness.
Treat your hands just like you treat your face. Keep them covered and away from direct sunlight if you’re outside often. When going swimming, use a water-resistant sunscreen to protect your hands from harmful UV rays that can dry out your skin and cause long-term damage. During winter, wear gloves to protect your skin from dry winter air, which can dry out your skin.
Your skincare routine probably includes different types of lotions and potions for your face and body. However, your hands need TLC too! Use the following tips to prevent and care for dry hands: