Hand Eczema 101: What Causes It and How To Treat It
If your hands have been cracking and drying way too much lately, you’re not alone. We’re explaining what causes hand eczema flare ups and some ways to tame them.
So, what causes hand eczema? While its exact origins are still unknown (and, therefore, a cure), common triggers have been identified. Irritants such as allergens, sweat or stress are some of the reasons behind what causes hand eczema, especially for extra sensitive skin that is already prone to dryness. Even water can upset your skin if you tend to wet and dry your hands often! If you’re an essential worker in healthcare or other fields, it’s not uncommon for you to experience hand eczema symptoms.
Although it may seem counterintuitive, frequently washing your hands is actually rather drying. Add constant sanitizing in the mix and you’ve got a recipe for a weakened skin barrier. Even if you’ve never experienced symptoms before, these new habits result in less lipids and lower moisture levels in your skin. Because your hands are now more dehydrated, they become more susceptible to cracking, which can then lead to irritation and eventually flare ups.
Fortunately, there are ways to protect your hands while keeping them smooth, clean and itch-free.
Whenever you have the choice between hand-washing or hand sanitizing, sink and soap is always best. Wash with water that is lukewarm, not too hot and not too cold. When you’re done, pat dry instead of rubbing and then apply a moisturizer right away to seal in as much moisture as you can. For those times when you do need to use a sanitizer, make sure to moisturize as soon as it dries.
Go for hand moisturizers that are high in oil content, that means creams or butters over lotions. It’s key during this time is to use a barrier-protecting product that restores skin lipids and moisture levels. Remember, the more moisture that leaves the skin, the more likely a flare up is to occur.
Leave different ones around the house so that you don’t forget to apply throughout the day (and sneak in a little self-care!) Why not get your senses involved? You can keep options with different textures and scents in different spots to match your mood and needs. For example, on your nightstand a rich butter with a soothing, calming aroma can help restore your hands overnight and prepare your mind for sleep. When you’re on the go, slide a compact tube with a fast-absorbing texture in your purse to moisturize right after you’ve used sanitizer.
Explore our hero products below to see which one is best for you and your lifestyle needs!
Creamy, whipped and silky. Super moisturizing grass-fed tallow oil is the secret behind this hand butter’s reparative power. Kids love its fun sweet orange scent! Can be used to nourish and safeguard your whole family’s hands.
A hybrid between a cream and a butter, this rich hand butter is supercharged with pea peptides to leave your skin feeling and looking youthful. Its dreamy, calming scent of blue tansy makes it the perfect nightstand companion.
Small yet mighty, this skin-savior was formulated specially for the hardworking hands of our brave healthcare workers. Thick, antioxidant-rich botanical oils and butters like Cupuacu and sea buckthorn plus a myriad of Traditional Chinese Medicine based herbs sink in quickly to repair and deliver deep nourishment. All you need is just a small dab 1-2 times a day.