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Our Favorite Hand Lotions For Soothing Your Extra-Dry Hands

We’ve all been washing and sanitizing our hands significantly more than usual, which you may have noticed is a little big drying! How are we getting through this? Here are our picks for relief from the dry hands that may currently be plaguing you.

“Usually I’m a pretty soft, smooth moisturized babe, now with triple time hand and face washing (well just a double face wash) I’ve stepped my game up. I have actually been using this balm on my hands for a while now, just a little bit works for my hands to feel moisturized but not slippery. I have the original balm and it works perfectly and obviously makes my lips feel mad good too”– Shelli Nicole, Writer

“This queerdo is DIY-or-die, even in a pandemic. I make my own lotion by mixing equal parts coconut oil and shea butter in a fake double-boiler (a mental bowl in a saucepan). I whip it up and slather it on. This goes on my whole body, including my hands, which always tend to be dry. It’s a little greasy at first, but once it sinks in, I feel moisturized to the core. Bonus points: mostly fragrance free, paraben free, not tested on animals.” – Malic White, Writer

Homemade Body Butter

Cocokind’s One-For-All Balm

“My skin has been extremely dry, unsurprisingly, especially since I live in North Carolina, where the weather is currently going from 80 degrees to 50 degrees every other day. Once I took on pottery classes (which I miss, btw, thanks quarantine!) I’ve had to really find a good lotion that I can actually rely on as my hands get PISSED OFF from all of the clay, and the subsequent scrubbing they receive after class. Enter Cocokind’s One-For-All Balm. I live for Cocokind because I love their messaging and that they use sustainable packaging (and are not a zillion dollars), and I tried this product because they were donating 100% of proceeds at the time to an organization helping with the wildfires in Australia. Now, they still donate 5 percent to an org called One Tree Planted. But, okay, the lotion itself: this is really more of a balm, so it’s suuuper thick, and you can use it other places. I use it by applying a dab to my lips and behind my ears (which is also, inexplicably, drying out?) and then I squeeze a quarter-sized amount into my palms and rub them together until it kind of warms and melts. It’s sticky at first, but then it dries into this lovely almost silky-feeling. Unscented, and very affordable.” Rachel Charlene Lewis, Writer

“I don’t run particularly dry or oily, but since moving to Vegas, my skin has suddenly become extremely dry. Throw all the hand sanitizer and hand-washing into the mix, and let’s just say I’ve accidentally let my hands get so dry some days that they CRACK. As far as bang for your buck lotions go, I really swear by this Gold Bond healing hand cream, which comes in a compact size so I like to keep one in the car and one in the apartment. Hell, I should probably start keeping one upstairs and one downstairs. This is unscented, and I’m not necessarily against scented lotions but since I’ve been using more than usual, I’ve preferred something a little more plain.” – Kayla Kumari Upadhyaya, Writer

Gold Bond Ultimate Healing Hand Cream

Summer Solace Tallow Balm

“I found this tallow balm at Echo Park Craft Fair last spring and have been using it everywhere since — it’s great for hands and body, works for hair and face, and has a fresh but not overpowering fragrance that I’m still into after about a year of use. I love the minimal ingredients and processing, pasture-raised animal fat base, glass packaging, and fact that a little goes a long way. If you’re in California, the CBD Trauma Balm is great for topical/muscle/joint/period pain, and has a notable hemp smell that is perfect for working from home.” – Carolyn, Writer and NSFW Consultant

“I have Keratosis pilaris, a skin condition that means my skin creates too much keratin and causes a lot of bumps on my arms & legs. This lotion is truly my holy grail; the lactic acid helps to exfoliate and promote new skin cell turnover, which keeps those annoying bumps at bay. Plus, it’s unscented, so I don’t have to worry about competing smells from the other 600 products I slather on myself every day.It absorbs quickly too, so I don’t have to wait super long after applying it to get dressed. Go forth and be smooth! ” – Christina Tucker, Writer

Amlactin Moisturizing Body Lotion

CeraVe Healing Ointment

“I used to keep Weleda Skin Food in my bag for my daily hand moisturizing needs, but in our new timeline, in April 2020, I decided I needed something more hardcore (also I never go outside anymore so I’ve stopped storing the Weleda tube in my bag, it just lives on my bedside table now). Rachel turned me onto CeraVe products a while ago and I’ve had good experiences with them, so when I saw they have a “healing ointment” that was more intense than their regular moisturizers I was intrigued. This promised to “soothe dry, cracked, and chafed skin” and I would say it is true to its word. It’s VERY thick and greasy – I cannot imagine how someone could put this on and then go about their day using their hands, it does not ever rub in and more like, sits on top of the skin for a long time – but my big party trick is I slather it on my hands before bed and then I PUT SOCKS ON MY HANDS TO HOLD IN THE OINTMENT! I think gloves suited for this purpose would work better (I know they exist because I learned this trick from my grandma who actually had legit gloves), but I’m not trying to order anything that isn’t an absolute necessity right now, I live alone so I don’t give a shit about how I look or what anyone thinks of my nighttime routine, and I rarely go outside anymore so I have an abundance of socks just waiting to be used as bedtime gloves. The socks work fine, is what I’m saying. Anyhow with this whole thick ointment/socks on my hands while sleeping scheme, my hands have been in great shape. Absolutely would recommend. Wear cute socks for added pleasure. You’re welcome.” – Vanessa, Community Editor

“I actually carry lotion with me everywhere because I hate how my hands feel right after washing them, which is “very dry.” Like it’s pretty much all I can think about as soon as I am done washing my hands… where is my lotion??? And then I open my bag and I’m like “Yay! My lotion is right here!” Now I have lotion in every room of my very small apartment. I usually try a new lotion in travel size before investing in a larger bucket, which’s how I found this puppy. It’s just thick enough and I love the smell (smell is VERY important to me!). I like lotion in a bucket rather than a squeeze-situation because it’s easier to get every last drop.” – Riese, CEO

Soap & Glory The Righteous Butter

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  1. Great tips! I love the sock story Vanessa, when my brother was little he would suck his thumb and he had to wear woolen socks on his hands to bed to stop it.

    I’m in Europe, so I don’t know if this brand is available everywhere, but Bepanthen Salve is the main thing I use for eczema, broken cuticles, anything extremely dry. Lifesaving. It’s thick and greasy, so more of an overnight thing. Contains lanolin, so not vegan. I’ve heard several dermatologists recommend this.

    This is the one I mean: https://www.bepanthen.nl/producten/bepanthen-beschermende-zalf/

  2. THIS is the topical content other websites are failing to deliver right now. THIS is why I need Autostraddle.

  3. Anything by Aesop, an Australian company that has a shop in LA. My favorite by Aesop is Resurrection Aromatique Hand Balm.

  4. i’m a cerave bitch for sure. i had eczema between my fingers before i started working in a preschool, and then a pandemic on top of that means constant dry skin! i have a lighter one that i put on, then aquaphor on the really raw spots, and then sometimes i have to use a prescription ointment because i’m hashtag hot

    i had a friend stay with me for a while in the winter and she was horrified/impressed at the number of creams and ointments my nightly routine involves

  5. Haha Vanessa love the socks. I also love my CeraVe cream, which I put on my face. I originally thought my face would hate the cream but my face seems to love it actually even though it tends to be oily?

  6. While everyone was distracted buying toilet paper, hand sanitizer and face masks, Gold Bond was able to quietly trademark the word HAND™.

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