When the winter season rolls around, many of us end up enduring months of having dry, cracked, darkened, and painful knuckles. It’s easy to forget about taking the right precautions to prevent dry knuckles. However, even if you are suffering from a severe case, there are several highly effective home remedies that you can use for healing your knuckles.
These remedies are not only safe, natural, and effective, but also are much more affordable than store-bought hand creams and moisturizers. Additionally, they don’t include any unnecessary dyes, additives, or other chemicals which may end up irritating your skin even more, in the long run.
Why Are My Knuckles Dry?
What causes dry knuckles? Well, not surprisingly, one of the main causes is dryness. In the winter, the air is actually far drier than air during warmer seasons, since cold air holds less humidity than warm air. This is one of the main factors for why so many people develop dry skin on their knuckles only during the winter.
Strangely enough, the more you wash your hands, the more likely you are to develop dry, cracked skin on your hands and knuckles. This is because the water and soap draws oil out of the skin of your hands and fingers, which leaves your skin even more exposed to the dry air, causing it to dry out even more.
The final contributing factor of why dry skin so often forms on the knuckles, is because our hands and fingers are constantly bending and moving. causing the skin to become more damaged as it dries out. This leads to the characteristic fissures and cracks that many people experience during the dry, cold months of the year.
Home Remedies for Dry and Cracked Knuckles
Now that we know what causes dry, cracked knuckles, what can we do to make them soft, smooth, and less painful? We’ve compiled seven of the most effective home remedies that will heal your knuckles quickly and easily.
1) Coconut Oil
Coconut oil is ideal for softening and moisturizing skin anywhere on your body, including your knuckles. This has been a folk cure for healing skin for a very long time, with good reason. The fats contained in coconut oil both hydrate and protect you skin, while its antibacterial properties help to prevent infections of the cracked skin.
You can use coconut oil at room temperature or warm it up a bit. Then, simply massage it into your knuckles and hands for several minutes, until all the dry skin is penetrated. Initially, you may want to repeat this up to three times a day, if the skin of your knuckles is particularly damaged. Over time, your skin will heal, and feel and look great.
2) Milk or Cream
Milk and cream not only have fats which help to heal and protect your skin, but also contain lactic acid. The lactic acid acts to remove the dry, damaged skin and help to return your skin’s pH to a proper level, thereby promoting healing.
Soak your hands in milk or cream for about 5 minutes, then gently massage it into your skin for a few minutes more. Then gently wash your hands in warm water. You can repeat this gentle, but effective, remedy three times a day until your hands start to heal. Then, reduce the frequency to once a day.
Honey is widely valued for its medicinal uses. This natural cure is also effective for treating dry and cracked knuckles. Honey acts to seal and protect the thin, sensitive skin of your knuckles, and is packed with anti-oxidant and anti-microbial compounds, which help to promote healing and prevent further damage.
Take some honey and thoroughly massage it into the areas to be treated. Leave it on your hands for about 10 minutes. Then, remove it with soap and warm water. Repeating this once per day will help your hands and knuckles to heal quickly.
4) Olive Oil with Sugar
Like coconut oil, olive oil contains loads of healthy fats which help to heal and protect your skin. By adding a teaspoon of sugar into the oil, you can create a mild exfoliant. This removes the damaged skin more quickly, allowing your hands to heal even faster.
Mix two teaspoons of sugar with two teaspoons of olive oil. Rub the mixture into your hands and then gently scrub your hands and fingers. Leave the mixture on for several minutes, then clean your hands using warm water.
Oatmeal is an excellent, natural, and gentle exfoliant that can help your skin heal more quickly. Combine two tablespoons of oatmeal with 1 tablespoon of olive oil, coconut oil, milk, or honey to create a natural moisturizer and exfoliant mixture. Mix it in your hands and gently scrub the skin on your knuckles for 10 minutes. If the mixture starts to dry out, add a bit more liquid. Leave it on for 10 more minutes, then rinse it off with soap and water. Repeat once every one to two days for best results.
This amazing fruit has endless health benefits and uses. It is loaded with a variety of vitamins, minerals, and anti-oxidants. It is also densely packed with super health fats which are also great for your skin. Using avocado both protects and heals damaged and painful knuckles, and will leave your hands feeling soft and smooth.
Mash some ripened avocado and mix with a small amount of oil or honey, to make it easier to apply. Massage it into your hands well, and then leave the mixture on for 15 minutes. Then gently wash the avocado mixture off with warm water. Repeat two to three times a week.
7) Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar not only functions as an exfoliant, scouring away dead and damaged skin cells, but also helps to restore the correct pH balance to your skin. This helps your skin to stay healthier and fights dryness.
Combine 1 1/2 cups of apple cider vinegar with 1 1/2 cups of water in a large bowl or other container. Let your hands soak in it for about 20 minutes. Then, gently dry your hands. Repeat this two to three times a week to accelerate the healing process and help get rid of your dry, cracked knuckles.