Thankfully more people are increasing their hand washing regiments now that the CDC and health officials have emphasized that regular hand washing is imperative to helping curb the spread of COVID-19.
But there's one step we all tend to forget after washing our hands or applying hand sanitizer – that critical layer of hand cream. Ironically, by over-washing our skin, we can develop dry cracks in the skin, giving bacteria an entry point into our bodies. Here are some best practices on how to treat signs of over-washing like pain, redness, flaking and itching.
Why is hand-washing so harsh on our skin?
The outermost layer of our skin is composed of oils and wax and it acts as both a shield from the outside and a guard that maintains natural moisture in the skin. This natural barrier is broken down by the suds created by soap while washing hands, which doesn't discriminate between unwanted oil, germs, debris and natural oils in the skin. Not applying a quality hand cream can lead to dryness, redness, itching, flaking, discomfort and in severe cases, cracks in the skin. Those with pre-existing dermatologic conditions like eczema can experience worsening symptoms.
How to wash your hands to avoid skin dryness
Apply enough mild, fragrance-free soap to remove dirt, but avoid using so much that it creates a thick lather which tends to wash away healthy natural oils. Wash with warm, not hot water, for at least 20 seconds, patting your hands dry with a towel. Once your hands are dry, apply a moisturizer immediately. Keep small travel sizes of Glaminator Beauty Bod Butter in your car, purse, gym bag, and at your work desk to make sure it is within reach.
Are there any ingredients to avoid when skin is chapped?
Products that contain fragrance can be irritating to chapped, sensitive skin. Creams and ointments are better than lotions and try to avoid hand sanitizers with too much alcohol, as they can be drying to chapped skin.
Are there other treatments to increase moisture absorption?
Around bedtime before laying down for your beauty rest, apply our Body Butter and then cover with cotton gloves to increase absorption. You may also consider using a humidifier at night which raises the humidity level in a room that can help dry skin.
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