Wednesday, December 1, 2010

One of Those Days

After spending the better part of the past decade living in more humid climates, my skin has decided to reject Utah's dry, dry winter air.  Hit particularly bad are my hands, where my skin has started cracking and splitting open with the least little hit.  It seems I can't keep enough lotion on them.  I woke up this morning with a new split and decided to dedicate the day to layering the lotion on.

All was going well, until just after applying lotion, I tried to take a bowl of very hot oatmeal out of the microwave.  The bowl slipped and hot oatmeal poured over my hand and splashed all over the kitchen, leaving me with a mess and a burn right over the split and on my thumb.  I could tell it was going to be one of those days!

Needless to say, I gave up on the idea of oatmeal for breakfast and switched to yogurt.

I'm really sharing this story to ask your advice on lotion - anyone have a product that saves your hands in winter when the weather gets even drier than usual?  It would be a bonus if the lotion didn't leave my hands super slick so I can safely take a bowl out of the microwave!  And, equally important - I'm a big handwasher, but I have a feeling my anti-bacterial handsoap is contributing to my dry skin.  Any recommendations on hand soap?

I heard this artist while blog hunting this morning - she's new to me, but maybe not to those of you in the UK where she is touring right now.  What do you think?  Lissie - "Everywhere I Go"
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Ashley Sisk said...

That sounds like no fun at all. I think it's part of the aging process...things that once never gave us a problem start. I just got allergies for the first time. I don't know what to recommend but I hope it gets better.

Nikki said...

we use cetaphil lotion and it seems to do a pretty good job. when i get really bad cracks around my thumbs, i fill the crack with super glue. it sounds weird, but it stops the hurt.

lisa said...

Oh Jamie, what a day! i am so sorry! Two things that have worked wonderfully for me: Neutrogena Norwegian Formula Hand Cream, and Aveeno Daily Moisturizing Lotion. Both come in a tube. One thing to be sure of, don't use anything with a fragrance. Fragrance = alcohol, and alcohol = DRY!!! I sure hope you did not get badly burned, and i hope tomorrow starts off (and stays) much better for you. as for today...HUGS! xo


Tammy Lee Bradley said...

Ugh, poor thing. When I was little my mom used to use this on me after winter took it's toll on my sensitive skin. {Corn Huskers Heavy Duty Oil-Free Hand Treatment Lotion.}

Laloofah said...

I was talking to a friend today who described this week so far as being a week of Mondays. I agreed (especially about today!), and bet you would too. Sorry about your cracked hands and spilled oatmeal! (Soaking in an oatmeal bath is actually supposed to help dry and itchy skin, but I don't think spilling hot oatmeal on your hands has quite the same therapeutic effect!) ;-)

As you know, we live in a climate almost identical to SLC's... Rocky Mountain arid. My husband has been a UPS man here for 20 years, so he has especially suffered from dry and cracked hands (especially the tips of his thumbs). Very painful! We've tried all kinds of products over the years with varying degrees of success (or lack thereof), but these are the products that have worked best for us:

Calendula Cream - you should be able to find 100% calendula cream in a natural foods store or at It should meet your criteria of being non-greasy, so it's good for daytime use.

African Shea butter - this is the brand we use (we get it locally). You'll probably only want to use this at night though, because it is quite greasy. But great for your skin!

Neem oil - this is wonderful for healing those cracks in your hands (or any other cuts, sores or burns!) We put this on the cracked skin and cover it with a bandaid, and after just a couple of days the crack is usually healed. Its aroma is a little, um, different, and it's very oily so you'll definitely need to use the bandaid (and you can use it only at night if you wish), but this stuff is amazing for speedy healing!

You might also want to try Neem oil soap. I'd definitely ditch the antibacterial soap, not only because it's likely contributing to your dryness but also because it's no more effective than regular soap. Drying your hands thoroughly after washing them helps keep them from chapping too.

Hope that's helpful!

Anita @ GoingALittleCoastal said...

I just had to pop in and give you some products I use. The easiest to find is Gold Bond Ultimate. Absorbs nicely and no greasy feel. I also use L'Occitane hand cream with has shea butter in it. It is much thicker and I use it at night. Though it doesn't leave a greasy feel either. It is more expensive. Oh and one more I just thought of which my son's Derm recommended since he just started a new med that dries the skin. Aquaphor Healing Ointment. It's by Eucerin. I would switch hand soaps to something more gentle and moisturizing. Hope you feel better!

Diana Joy said...

Oh oatmeal on an open wound. Seriously; I did almost the same thing you did and burnt one finger real sorry.

When our daughter was small and had the dryest skin possible we used Udderly Smooth (Udder Cream). I use Aveeno Daily Moisturizing Lotion now and it helps me. It's not too greasy also.

Another product is something quilters use and I've forgotten the name. Will come back in if I can remember it.

~Kristina said...

oh my gosh! i do hope it heals fast.
as for lotions & soaps, there is a local company here in wpg, Tiber River Naturals. I haven't met a product of theirs I don't like. The seasonal products right now are Sugar Cookie and Santa's big red pants. With a lotion named that way, how can you go wrong?
Let me know if you want some mail magic ;)

Courtney said...

Oh, girl. Sorry your day started out like that. My daughter has eczema and we've tried numerous things on her dry, itchy skin and the one that seems the work the best is Eucerin. I use the body wash on her as well as the lotion. It still may give you that slick feeling until it soaks in, but it works for her. And I read recently that the best kind of hand soap to use was something with olive oil in it (no particular brand mentioned) but that the antibacterial was very drying. Hope that helps!

Love the new look! Blog looks great!!!

Krystal said...

I am so bad at product recommendations because I don't buy them often. good luck!!

R Montalban said...

I am sorry to hear about this and I hope it gets better. Can't give any advice though as I have not suffered from this, sorry

justine said...

you need the Kiehl's ultra strength hand salve and the ultra facial moisturiser, we swear by them and they are brilliant, readily available in the USA!

Angie Willis said...

Ouch. I know exactly what you mean - my finger tips are beginning to crack around the nail and my hands feel like sand paper at this time of year. The two best products I've found so far (but I'm in the UK!) are Aqueous Cream BP as a general hand/body cream and Snowfire Healing Tablet which is a solid stick for putting on the really bad cracks.

Keep away from the oatmeal for a bit!

Lesley said...

Oh, Jamie, sorry you've had a bad start to the day- things can only get better!
You could try putting sweet almond oil on your hands at night and going to bed in cotton gloves!

Marcie said...

Love the music..and - yes - I do know of something that's worked for me. 'Skin Food' by Weleda. It's not cheap..but it's the only thing that's healed my cracked hands and especially my cracked feet!!!

Gilding Lilies said...

I don't have any suggestions, but I do have sympathy. My lips got so dried out when I was in Las Vegas that they cracked and now I am wearing a big cold sore on my top lip, lovely! Urgh!!! I hope someone has a suggestion to bring some moisture back to you, beacuse being without it isn't any fun at all.

Miss Becky said...

Jamie, I've suffered from dry skin since my forties. First advice, stay away from any product with mineral oil in it, as, in spite of what we're lead to believe, it is drying, and it's in most grocery store products.
this is what I use:

and it has worked beautifully for several years now. I find it at my local food co-op but it is in lots of stores now. For cracked feet, Burt's Bees Coconut Foot Cream is fantastic. I also run a humidifier at night.

I hope you find some relief!

cindy said...

i'm sorry you had such a day and wish i had some lotion suggestions for your hands, which you need in good shape for your photos. a humidifier seems to help us with dry skin.

urban muser said...

wow, these comments are certainly full of lotion recommendations. i guess all of us bloggers get dry hands from blogging on our computers all the time :) hope tomorrow is a better day.

i like the song. she really belts it out there near the end! never heard her before.

Melanie said...

My hands are always sweaty down here in humid Florida, but I do recommend that you lotion (or oil) up your hands at night with whatever you think will work best and put some socks on over your hands and sleep in them. I understand from my Northern friends that it really helps!

Love Lissie! Came across her on another blog a few weeks ago. BTW, love the new look of your blog!!

bethany said...

Oh, sweet girl! I can sooo relate! The brutal Wisconsin wind and snow is just starting here and already my skin is parched as can be!

Someone already said this, so I won't feel crazy for saying it: Utter Creme. Is it made for cows? YES. Indeed it is. Hence the reason I'm a smidge embarrassed to recommend it! But, truly...since about age two, it has been the only thing that's always worked for me. And, at $4.00 a bottle? The price it right. I might just peel off the label and store it in the very back of your cabinet, let anyone see it. :)

Otherwise, the other good product I've found is Burt's Bee's Shea Butter Hand Repair Creme. It's not a stash-in-your-purse lotion as it's a repair creme and doesn't soak in right away. (A little greasy, yes.)

Good luck! Happy moisturising! :)

Dorian Susan said...

Hey Jamie-
Sorry you had a bad day. I had a similar day on Tuesday. I've taken to cooking oatmeal on the stove-the old fashioned way.
Looks like you have plenty of recommendations on hand cream-when my hands get dry from too much drumming African Shea Butter is good.
I see you've connected with my HS classmate Laurie at Mehibitale Days...very cool. She knows her vegan and organic really well.
Happy day to you.

Effie said...

Just discovered your lovely blog. Couple of things for dry skin. First, take a flax seed supplement-I can tell the difference when I take mine and when I don't. Second don't use petroleum based products as the really just coat your skin and do not allow moisture to penetrate. I have found Burt's Bee's Milk and Honey to be perfect and also a soak in Dr. Singh's mustard bath helps remove a lot of dead skin-you need to remove it to get to the skin that really needs the moisture.

J. said...

Oh geez!!!
I think there was something in the air this past week. And it was omg-never-ending!!!
I swear by Sally Hansen, 18 Hour Protective Cream. And there's a sugar scrub that goes with it. Scrub, then the lotion and your hands are amazing.
I went to get the link for you, and it says it's been discontinued!!! ACK!!!
Guess what I'm going to stock up on tomorrow??!

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