It seems that each year, it gets worse and worse. I tried to ignore it at first -- going through tube after tube of hand lotion before it was Spring again and my hands weren't painfully dry any more. But two years ago, working as a barista left my hands victim to harsh hand sanitizers,wicked hot steam, and constant washing. I couldn't ignore the dryness any more because it was just too painful.
So after researching and trying out different methods, I've stumbled upon a strange but foolproof (and natural/easy/cheap) way for keeping my hands soft in the in winter months. I call it...
(Okay, okay. This is really weird. But bear with me. If you've ever had a problem with dry hands, this is definitely worth a try if you're willing to laugh at yourself in the process.)
Basically, what you're going to do is re-introduce your hands to moisture and then lock it in overnight. It's weird, but it works.
Grab a basin of warm (or hot, depending on what you can stand) soapy water. I use Dr. Bronner's castille soap because it's full of healthy, natural oils (and your hands will greatly benefit from the oil!). If you don't have castille soap, try rubbing a spoonful of olive oil on your hands before soaking them.
Place your hands in the water and soak them for 15-20 minutes (usually I have Elliott talk to me or we watch a few clips on Hulu to let the time pass, since there's not much you can do with your hands soaking in a basin of hot water).
Step Two: Vaseline Is Your Friend
Petroleum jelly is so weird. How in the world does it work so well?? I tried looking it up but I still can't really figure it out. Anyways, get yourself a nice big jar of PJ and rub it all over your hands (YES, I know it's greasy, but trust me!), paying extra attention to dry spots.
Step Three: Sock Hands!!!
So if you have soft, clean, cotton gloves, you can simply put those on over your vaseline-covered hands. But if you are, like me, fresh out of cotton gloves, grab a pair of clean, cotton socks (yup, I'm serious) and cover those hands for the night. Yes, I said for the night. To be honest, I usually wake up in the middle of the night and take them off.
Step Four: Maintenance Through Hand Soap
To keep my hands soft day-in and day-out (and so I don't have to do the Sock Hands method every night), I use my homemade hand soap. It really moisturizes and is super natural. My hands revolt against me whenever I travel somewhere else, so I actually might start traveling with my own soap.
This post will be a part of the weekly link-up at Your Green Resource, so check it out!