Months of over-washing and sanitizing hands can dehydrate our skin — dryness that puts an unflattering emphasis on signs of aging. To heal dry hands: natural remedies that rejuvenate, heal, and pamper skin!
Cracks? Heal them with ceramides.
Harsh cleansing agents can strip away ceramides, natural protective lipids, from skin’s barrier, resulting in painful, sometimes bloody cracks. But you can replenish skin’s ceramide supply to mend and heal its outer layer and lock in moisture with a ceramide-infused cream, says New York City dermatologist Michele Green, MD.
One study even found that applying ceramides daily increased skin’s natural hydration levels by 35 percent over three months.
One we like: CeraVe Moisturizing Cream (Buy at Walmart, $12.44)
Age spots? Erase them with buttermilk.
The combination of parched skin and sun-caused dark spots adds decades to the appearance of our dry hands. To fade spots fast, reach for buttermilk.
The baking staple contains up to four times more exfoliating lactic acid than milk and yogurt to gently rid skin’s surface of dry, discolored cells. This helps reveal the brighter, more even-toned layer of skin underneath.
To do: Dip a cotton ball into a small bowl of buttermilk and dab onto spots. Let sit for 15 minutes; rinse. Use every other day for results in 30 days.
Crepiness? Smooth it with sweet almond oil.
Thinner skin on the backs of hands takes on a crepe paper–like appearance with age, which is then exacerbated by moisture-sapping alcohols in sanitizers and exposure to cooler weather.
The fix: sweet almond oil. Its antioxidant vitamin E boosts collagen production for thicker, firmer skin while also protecting delicate hand skin from the damage that leads to future collagen breakdown, says Dr. Green. “Plus, the nut’s moisture-restoring linoleic acid helps plump up deflated-looking skin.”
To do: Massage a dime-size amount of almond oil, like Hollywood Beauty 100% Pure Sweet Almond Oil (Buy at Walgreens, $7.99) onto hands twice a day to see a difference in one month. Bonus: Many hand sanitizers now come infused with almond oil to eradicate germs while leaving skin supple. One we like: MegaBabe Squeaky Clean Hand Sanitizer (Buy at Target, $9.99).
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This story originally appeared in our print magazine.