Home Remedies for Severely Dry Cracked Hands

Anna Duncan Art, flickr, Creative Commons

Cracked, dry hands can be painful and unsightly. Sometimes they can become infected. The secret to keeping hands hydrated is to keep them away from water as much as possible. Several home remedies work to keep moisture in the hands.

If your hands fail to improve after using these home remedies diligently, you should seek a doctor's advice.

Hand Washing

Keep your hands out of water as much as possible. Water will dry them out even more. When you must wash your hands, dry them gently with a soft towel. Apply a gentle lotion or cream to your hands each time you wash them. Keep a small container of soothing lotion or cream with you, and use it several times a day. Keep a supply of lotion or cream in several places in your home or at work so you will have it any time you need it. Some lotions and creams are irritating, so make sure yours doesn't irritate your hands more.

Use Natural, Mild Soap

Buy mild, natural soaps that will not make the condition worse. Look for soaps that are made with only natural ingredients. Health food stores might have them. Check to be sure the soap is made with materials obtained directly from plants or animals and contain no synthetic ingredients. Avoid antibacterial soaps and soaps made for washing dishes.

Wear Gloves

Buy thin cotton gloves at your pharmacy. Pick up several pairs so you can wear them most of the day and change several times a day as they get dirty. These soft gloves help keep the lotion on your hands and other irritants out. Apply lotion before you go to bed, and sleep with the cotton gloves on your hands. If you must wash dishes or use any strong household products, wear rubber gloves over the cotton gloves. Hands tend to be drier in the winter months, so it's a good idea to wear gloves when you're outside.


Be prepared to take care of your hands when you are away from home. Take a cotton towel or several paper towels with you. Use them when you use public rest rooms that have only hot-air dryers. Hot-air dryers might save trees, but they will dry your hands even more. Take bottles of pure water with you and drink it often to hydrate your body. Remember to take your moisturising lotion or cream.


Dry, cracked skin can be painful and unsightly. Bacteria that are naturally on the skin can enter the dry cracks and cause infection. Be on the lookout for any places that look unusually red, bleed or become open sores. See your doctor if your condition doesn't improve when you've tried other measures. Dry skin can sometimes be caused by an underlying medical condition.