Our hands are an important part of our body, being used probably more than any other throughout the day. Constantly exposed to the air and surfaces around us, the skin on our hands can suffer more also.
Having dry skin on our hands is a widespread problem for the majority of people. Usually, it is not a sign of anything more dangerous, but it can become very irritating for the person suffering, often resulting in cracked skin with itchy, red patches.
As our largest organ, the skin is the human body’s first line of defense. It is a huge shield protecting us from damaging and harmful substances. It is essential, therefore, that we listen to what our hands are telling us and take care of our skin. From the simple use of gloves to rejuvenating hand cream, there are several ways to protect our skin from potential anguish.
What Causes Dry Skin?
There are, of course, some instances where illnesses or other medical conditions can have symptomatic effects on the skin and should be treated correctly by a doctor. However, in most cases, dry skin is caused by environmental conditions. These conditions can be anything from weather-related to your professional environment.
In the colder winter months, our skin can become more susceptible to drying out which leads to cracked and damaged skin.
As well as this, exposure to chemicals can also harm our skin. This could be through a workplace or at home. Using cleaning products, detergents, antibacterial soaps or gels, overuse of cosmetic products, oils, greases, adhesives, and handling plants can all irritate the skin on your hands. Anyone from a doctor, to a mechanic or a hairstylist, could easily be destroying the gentle balance of bacteria on their hands. This bacteria is vital to maintain healthy skin.
Additionally, frequent hand washing can be a cause of dry skin on your hands. This is because the constant washing of the skin on your hands strips away the natural oils. It also dries out the skin which allows it to become rougher and begin to crack.
Other possible causes include stress, being subjected to excessive heat, and prolonged sun exposure.
Best Ways To Keep Your Hands Hydrated
Luckily, despite the many conditions which can cause problems with the skin on your hands, there are many ways to help keep your hands sufficiently hydrated. The following methods have been tried and tested and are recommended by experts to prevent your skin from drying out.
Daily moisturizing is essential for healthy skin. You should use a good rejuvenating hand cream or serum several times a day to restore and hold in moisture.
It is also highly advisable to use moisturizer at night. This is so that the cream has enough time, while your skin is less active, to fully absorb the moisture and complete the cycle of hydration.
Look Out for Specific Ingredients
As there are so many products on the market promising everything from anti-aging miracles to softening secrets, it is necessary to know exactly what to look out for. Each cream will have dozens of ingredients but those that include glycerin, jojoba oil, cocoa butter and aloe will be most likely to improve hydration.
Additionally, you can try oils such as coconut to improve skin health.
If you find yourself using harsh chemicals, cleaning, or washing often, aim to wear gloves. This way your hands will be protected from losing their essential oils. Try to remember this at work and in the home.
Any UV exposure can be harmful to the skin so it is also highly recommended to remember to use sunblock. Many moisturizing creams now include sunblock ingredients and offer an SPF.
Depending on the extent of the dryness of your skin, you may want to seek medical advice. Usually, the issue of dry hands can be solved by taking care to adhere to the aforementioned suggestions. However, there is always a possibility that the dry skin on your hands is a symptom of something else. In these cases, if you visit a doctor or specifically a dermatologist, they may be able to prescribe a medicated cream. There are also more advanced treatments such as UV light therapy to improve the condition of your skin.