Home Remedies for Dry Hands and Feet: 7 Tips for Softer Winter Skin
Is the cold air leaving your skin painfully dry? These soothing remedies are sitting right in your kitchen.
Make them minty fresh
The benzoic acid in Listerine Antiseptic Mouthwash has a mild acidic effect to soften dead skin, says Papri Sarkar, MD, a board-dermatologist in Brookline, MA. The ethanol may also help protect from odor-causing bacteria. Sarkar warns that it’s important to dilute the mouthwash or you risk causing irritation. Mix one part Listerine to 2 parts water and soak your feet for 15 to 20 minutes.
Sleep in socks
Treat scaly, cracked feet while you sleep. Dr. Sarkar suggests this bedtime ritual: Soak feet in tepid water for ten minutes then apply a thick cream like Cerave or an ointment like Vaseline and put on socks. The hydrating ingredients will seep into dehydrated skin overnight to soften your soles and heal cracks. Here are other ways to give your feet some TLC.
Soothe with a yogurt mask
For a cheap alternative to that high-end cream, try coating dry feet and hands in full-fat yogurt. The lactic acid in yogurt acts as a natural exfoliant to gently remove dead skin while the fats restore moisture. For an extra boost, mix a teaspoon of raw honey into the yogurt before slathering on your skin (it’s super hydrating). Leave the mask on for ten minutes before rinsing off.
Spritz dryness away
Rose, lavender, or bergamot essential oils are great for hydrating the skin. To create an herbal spritzer, mix a few drops of any or all of these essential oils with water in a four-ounce spray bottle. Spritz on dry hands and feet whenever your skin needs a boost. These simple home remedies also work for treating everything from acne to irritation.
Whip up an at-home cold cream
This one is guaranteed to soften skin. You’ll need 1 ounce beeswax, 1/3 cup virgin olive oil, 2 tablespoons water or rosewater, and 5-10 drops of lavender essential oil. Melt the beeswax. Heat the oil slightly over a saucepan, then pour into the melted beeswax. Heat the water or rosewater in the saucepan, then stir it, drop by drop, into the oil and wax mixture. Remove from heat and stir until the mixture is cooled and thick. Blend in the lavender essential oil. Spoon the mixture into a jar and store in a cool place. It should last about three months.
Mash an avocado
Avocado is a great moisturizer, Dr. Sarkar says. The fats in avocados are extra nourishing for dry hands. Mash half of an avocado and combine with 1 tbsp olive oil and 1/8 cup sugar. The sugar will exfoliate dead skin away while the oils moisturize skin. Learn some other amazing benefits of avocados.
Try products with vitamin B3
“Vitamin B3, also known as niacinamide, has skin calming and brightening benefits,” says Josh Zeichner, MD, director of cosmetic and clinical research at Mount Sinai Hospital Department of Dermatology. “In addition it helps strengthen the skin barrier.” The better your skin barrier functions, the better it is at retaining water and keeping your skin moisturized. Now that your hands and feet are supple, find the best face moisturizer for your skin type.
Every product is independently selected by our editors. If you buy something through our links, we may earn an affiliate commission.