Though the hands are used for numerous routine, rigorous, and menial tasks, people tend to give it poor care especially after such tasks that could easily leave their hands dry, rough and chapped.
Factors that could make your hands dry and rough include; cold and dry air, hot and dry air especially in arid regions, excessive hand washing, some soaps and detergents, low humidity, exposure to sun, swimming in chlorinated water, skin conditions such as psoriasis and eczema, certain medications, aging due to the fact that the skin gets thinner and produces less natural oil as one ages.
Symptoms of dry and rough hands include; skin tightness especially after bathing, cracks on skin that tend to bleed, and scaling, peeling, or flaking skin.
Here are some tips and good practices, to consider, when dealing with dry, chapped, and rough hands;
- Avoid exposing your hands to extreme wind and cold as well as excessive sun exposure.
- Avoid washing hands with hot water.
- Endeavor to keep the atmosphere in your home humid. You could use a humidifier.
- You could use mild soaps or non-soap cleansers on your hands.
- Regularly apply moisturizing lotions on your hands especially if you live in dry climes.
- You could wear gloves to carry out routine or menial chores, such as gardening, or when lifting weights during exercise.
- Exfoliate your hands often, about once a week, to get rid of old dry skin.
- Massage your hands, fingers, and palms gently to improve blood circulation.
- Ensure you stay hydrated, by drinking an adequate amount of water daily, to keep your hand and body supple.
- Ensure you eat healthy, by eating foods rich in vitamins and minerals, to maintain your skin’s natural glow.
Below are natural treatments and home remedies for dry and rough hands;
1. Milk Cream
Milk cream is one of the best remedies for a dry and rough hand. It has a high-fat content which provides the needed moisture to the dry skin. In addition, the lactic acid present in milk exfoliates the layer of dead skin cells and exposes soft and hydrated skin. Take some fresh milk cream and rub it gently on your hands for a few minutes. Let it stay for 10 minutes, then, wash your hands with warm water.
2. Olive Oil
Olive oil is another hydrating agent that is great for restoring dry and damaged skin. It not only moisturizes your skin but the beneficial antioxidants also help in keeping your skin problem free. For this remedy, warm a little olive oil and apply it to your hands. Massage it gently for 10 minutes and leave it on. Do this two times every day for effective results.
3. Aloe Vera
There is probably nothing better than aloe vera for dry skin as it is an effective natural moisturizer. Aloe vera would help in improving the skin hydration and skin tone in a natural way. Clean an aloe vera leaf and cut it open to extract the gel. Apply it on your hands and rub it in a gentle motion for a few minutes. Allow it to stay for another 15 minutes and wash off with slightly warm water. Repeat it twice every day.
Plain yogurt can be extremely beneficial in improving the texture of your skin. Besides moisturizing your hands, yogurt will also cleanse and exfoliate your skin, all thanks to its high lactic acid content. Take a teaspoon of unsweetened yogurt in your hands and apply it evenly with a gentle massage for at least 5 minutes. Let it stay for another 10-12 minutes, then, wash off thoroughly with lukewarm water. Repeat this remedy every day or every alternate day.
5. Vitamin E Oil
Vitamin E oil is widely used in skin care products due to its skin beautifying effects. It hydrates and rejuvenates the skin making it soft and supple in no time. For this remedy, take half a teaspoon of vitamin E oil and rub it on your hands until it gets absorbed in the skin. Do this 2-3 times in a day until the damage to your skin reduces.
6. Use A Moisturizing Cleanser
Using a soap to clean your hands may dry it out excessively. To avoid this, stop using cleansers that have sulfate, synthetic fragrance or preservatives. Antibacterial soaps may also dry out your skin. The best way to deal with this problem is to use a cleanser which is formulated for excessively dry skin and helps in keeping your skin moisturized while removing all the impurities.
Avocado has high levels of monosaturated fats which are considered beneficial for dry skin. Avocado also nourishes your skin with vitamin A and E and keeps it soft and hydrated. You can prepare a homemade avocado mask by taking the pulp of half of a ripe avocado and mixing it with a tablespoon of honey. Then, spread the mask evenly on the dry areas of your hands and let the mask work for 12-15 minutes. Wash off thoroughly with water and pat dry thereafter. Do this remedy twice weekly to get effective results.
8. Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar works by balancing the pH of the skin and aids in retaining the moisture that easily gets lost. All you have to do is take a large bowl and add 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar to it. Also, add 2 tablespoons of olive oil and finally add about 2 cups of warm water. Mix well and soak your hands in it for at least 15 minutes. Remove your hands and wipe out the excess liquid. Then, apply a moisturizer. Do this once or twice a week.
9. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil has a deep hydrating action on the skin and can be used to treat dry and rough hands. Warm a little extra virgin coconut oil and apply it to your hands. Massage it for 5-7 minutes in a circular motion. Wear gloves and leave it overnight. Do this every day before bedtime.
A regular exfoliation would help in removing the dead skin cells and reduce roughness. You may make your own homemade scrub by mixing 2 tablespoons of sugar, especially brown sugar, with equal amounts of water and massage it gently into your skin to remove the impurities as well as dead skin cells. Let it stay for a few minutes, then, wash off using warm water. Pat dry and apply a moisturizer thereafter. Repeat this remedy three times in a week for better results.
11. Lemon Juice
Lemon juice is an excellent remedy for a beautiful skin. It not only cleanses the skin but also improves its texture. Take a large bowl and fill it with warm water. Then, add the juice of a lemon and a little honey to the warm water. Mix well and soak your hands in the mixture for 10-15 minutes. Remove your hand from the mixture and wipe your hands gently. Then, apply a moisturizer. Do this several times in a week.
12. Baking Soda
Baking soda has an exfoliating action on the skin which reduces rough skin. It also helps in balancing the skin’s pH. Make a paste by mixing equal amounts of baking soda, lemon juice, and honey. Now apply it to clean hands and allow it to stay for 10 minutes. Then, clean it off with warm water. Pat dry and moisturize your hands. Do this remedy at least 2-3 times in a week.
13. Do Not Use Hot Air Hand Dryer
If you tend to use a hot air dryer too often, it may make your hands excessively dry. It is best not to use them or only use it occasionally. Always shake dry or pat dry and apply a moisturizer after every wash.
14. Petroleum Jelly
Petroleum jelly is an easy and effective way to treat dry and rough hands. Petroleum jelly forms a protective layer on the skin which helps in retaining moisture. Simply apply petroleum jelly generously on your hands and wear a pair of gloves. Let it stay overnight and you will get up with softer hands every morning. Do this remedy regularly.
Oatmeal cleanses and exfoliates dry and damaged skin to reveal a fresh and soft skin. It also helps in retaining moisture of the skin. Take about 2 tablespoons of oatmeal in a bowl and add a teaspoon of honey and some warm water to make a paste. Apply this paste to your hands while gently rubbing it. Allow it to stay for 10-12 minutes and wash off with lukewarm water thereafter.
16. Ripe Banana
Ripe bananas not only moisturize an excessively dry skin but also reduces wrinkles to make the skin look younger. Take some mashed overripe banana and apply it to your hands. Let it stay for 25-30 minutes, then, wash it off using warm water. Pat dry and moisturize as usual.
Honey is one of the best remedies for dry skin as it helps in retaining the moisture of the skin. The high antioxidants present in honey makes it even more beneficial for attaining a beautiful skin. Apply honey on your dry skin and let it stay for 10-12 minutes. Rinse thoroughly with warm water and pat dry. Do this twice daily for faster results.
A regular massage using oils, like olive oil or coconut oil, may help in making your skin soft and supple. Take some oil of your choice and warm it a little. Apply it on your skin and massage in a gentle and circular motion for 8-10 minutes. Do this remedy on a regular basis. You may also massage your hands at bedtime and wear gloves to retain the moisture.
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