According to Mayo Clinic dermatologist Alina Bridges our hands weren't designed to wash every hour or 2 with harsh soap. They dry out from so much washing because it strips away the natural oils out of our skin, which protects it, causing your skin to get “cracked, dry, raw.”
As for what you can do to keep them from cracking, here are some tips:
- Not surprising, the key to protecting them is moisturizing, and Bridges says you need to do so right after washing “because you want to kind of seal it and maybe prevent some of this dryness from occurring.”
- Also, it’s best not to over dry your hands after washing, and instead leave them a little bit damp before moisturizing.
- Bridges suggests using creams instead of lotions, since lotions are water-based and could dry out the skin even more.
- When looking for a hand cream, choose one that’s free or irritants like retinol or ones that claim to be “anti-aging.”
- Also if your hands are sensitive choose fragrance-free products, and you can even use Vaseline to keep your hands moist.
- If that’s still not working for you, try putting the cream on overnight, and wear cotton gloves while sleeping. There are also hand masks and at-home paraffin wax treatments to use during the day.
- The main key is to constantly moisturize, so Bridges suggests making sure you have cream on you at all times.