How To Soothe Dry Hands From Excessive Hand Washing

By Nadine Eden 27th March 2020 Category: Advice

If all of this washing, sanitising and cleaning has your hands looking dry, cracked and sore, we’ve got the perfect remedy. We researched some of the most effective ingredients for maintaining soft, nourished skin.

It’s what’s on the inside that counts

When buying a hand cream or moisturiser, seek out products containing ingredients that really pack a punch when it comes to soothing dry skin. Many moisturisers combine emollients, occlusives and humectants, which all have different benefits to help nourish the skin and protect it from abrasive soaps, alcohol gels and cleaning products.

Know your moisturisers

Occlusives: usually oil-based and prevent moisture loss from the skin’s surface.

Humectants: increase the water content of the outer layers of the skin by pulling moisture from the air and from the deeper layers of skin.

Emollients: Soften the skin and cover small skin cracks, providing a protective layer.

Shea butter (Occlusive/Emollient) – Shea butter is a tree-nut oil, so is full of fatty acids and naturally occurring vitamins, making it both moisturising and nourishing. It also creates a natural barrier to help lock moisture in.

Aloe vera (Emollient) – Aloe vera is known for its soothing and cooling properties. It contains polysaccharides which help to stimulate new cell growth and glycoproteins which help reduce inflammation and irritation. Due to its rich vitamin C and E content, aloe vera is also hailed for its anti-ageing benefits.

Urea (Humectant) – Urea is a natural substance found in the skin that reduces as we age, which can contribute to dry skin. Urea helps bind moisture to the skin, increases cellular turnover and the shedding of dead skin cells. Making urea a powerful component for smooth, hydrated skin.

Vitamin E (Humectant & Emollient) – Supremely protective and beautifully hydrating, Vitamin E is a potent, nurturing antioxidant that will enhance your skin’s natural defensive barrier. It also helps shield the skin from damaging free radicals and other environmental threats.

Glycerin (Humectant) – Glycerin immediately penetrates deep into the skin and absorbs several times its weight in water, imitating our skin’s natural, hydrating process. It traps water in the epidermis by forming an occlusive barrier, preventing the skin from drying out.

Hyaluronic acid (Humectant) – Like urea, hyaluronic acid is a substance found naturally in the skin, which depletes with age. It acts like a sponge, drawing moisture in, and is able to hold almost 1,000 times its weight in water. It’s the same substance that is used in lip fillers and dermal fillers to plump out the skin.

Other tips for protecting your hands

Right now, frequent hand washing is saving lives, so we’re not going to tell you to reduce the number of times a day you do this. But you can help protect your skin by applying a cream or lotion after every hand wash. Keep a bottle by the sink next to the soap and apply generously after washing and drying your hands thoroughly (this will help your skin to absorb the cream better) Wearing gloves while cleaning is also a must. Bleach and other harsh cleaning products can cause severe dryness and may even burn your skin. If you suffer from a skin condition such as eczema, it is even more important to wear rubber gloves when cleaning. Applying a heavy moisturiser at night and wearing a pair of cotton conditioning gloves on top can help replenish the moisture lost from a day of fierce scrubbing.

Save 20% across all skincare 

We’ve got 20% off all skincare products in our online shop right now. Stock up on the essentials and treat your skin to what it needs – premium active ingredients that really work.

sk:n recommends for dry hands: 

sk:n Calming Body Lotion

Key ingredients: urea, shea butter, glycerin and conditioning botanical extracts.

Was £21 Now £16.80

sk:n Aloe Vera Gel

Key ingredients: aloe vera and vitamin E.

Was £13 Now £10.40

sk:n CU3 Intensive Moisture Cream

Key ingredients: glycerin and peptides

Was £36.50 Now £29.20

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