7 Best Hand Creams for Extremely Dry Hands

Published Categorized as Beauty Tips

What’s best for extremely dry hands?

If you have extremely dry skin on your hands, you’re not alone. Frequent hand washing (especially these days of extreme caution), maturing skin, and cold dry weather can all take a toll on our hands. They often show signs of aging, even before wrinkles appear on our faces. While many of us regularly use daily and nightly moisturizing products on our faces, it’s easy to forget that the hands need a hydration boost as well. In this post, we’ll recommend brands with the best hand cream for extremely dry hands, to prevent cracking and peeling of dry skin on your hands.

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How to Care for Extremely Dry Skin on the Hands

caring for very dry hands


While extremely dry skin can often be caused by cold weather, aging, and other natural factors, there are a number of ways to help soothe can care for dry skin on the hands.

They include:

  • Use lukewarm water when washing hands. Hot water may strip away the skin’s natural oils, so keep the temperature moderate
  • Use a gentle, moisturizing soap when washing hands. Many soaps have detergents and chemicals that can further dry the skin
  • Use a humidifier. Adding moisture to the air can help preserve moisture in the skin.
  • Use a cream, rather than a lotion. According to an interview with dermatologist Jason Frangos, creams provide more hydration than lotions, because they have less water (To learn more on lotion vs moisturizer, check out our post!)
  • Look for a cream free of fragrances and dyes and apply a thick layer immediately after showering or hand washing and take the time to massage it into the skin

If these methods don’t ease the dryness in your hands, or if you have persistent inflammation or itching, it’s best to see a dermatologist.

Best Hand Creams for Extremely Dry Hands

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Best Hand Cream for Repair of Cracked, Dry Hands

Excipial Rapid Repair Hand CreamExcipial Rapid Repair Hand Cream, 3.4 Ounce

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For health care, food service, and childcare workers, repeated hand washing and exposure to tough conditions throughout the day can take a huge toll on your hands.

If the skin of your hands is cracked, damaged, and painful, you need repairing cream that works fast and provides lasting protection.

The Excipial Rapid Repair Hand Cream was created by dermatologists for intense, rapid repair of hard working hands. It contains emollients and skin conditioners that help to support and repair the skin’s natural protective barrier.

The formula absorbs quickly and penetrates deeply, for lasting healing and moisture. The non-greasy formula eases tight skin and soothes itching. It contains no fragrances, colorants, or preservatives, and is safe for food and healthcare workers.

It’s designed to be used after work and overnight, to repair skin that was damaged during the day.



  • Intensive hydration and rapid healing
  • Soothes irritation and itching
  • Developed and recommended by dermatologists
  • No fragrances, colorants, or preservatives
  • Safe for health care and food service workers


  • Not very budget friendly


Budget Alternative

Aquaphor Healing Ointment


Aquaphor Healing Ointment - Moisturizing Skin Protectant for Dry Cracked Hands, Heels and Elbows, Use After Hand Washing - 14 oz. Jar

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If the price point is a deal breaker for you, this is a great second option.

Like the Excipial Rapid Repair Hand Cream, the Aquaphor Healing Ointment was designed for dry, cracked, irritated skin, especially from repeated hand washing and use of hand sanitizer.

It’s a multi-purpose ointment that helps soothe and treat dry, cracked skin, and can be used on the hands, elbows, or feet.

It’s also free of parabens, dyes, and fragrances.



Best Luxury Hand Cream for Extremely Dry Hands

L’Occitane Shea Butter Hand Cream


L'Occitane Shea Butter Hand Cream, 5.2 oz

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The L’Occitane Shea Butter Hand Cream is consistently loved and recommended by customers, beauty gurus, and influencers alike. In fact, L’Occitane sells a tube of this award-winning hand cream every two seconds.

It’s more than a luxury: it’s one of the best hand creams in the world.

The L’Occitane Shea Butter Hand Cream is non-greasy but rich in fatty acids that protect and restore the skin, leaving the hands soft and smooth even after hand washing. It contains organic shea butter, organic honey, and sweet almond oil.

L’Occitane partners with the women of West Africa to produce shea butter organically, sustainably, and traded fairly. Their products are cruelty-free.



  • Organic ingredients
  • Non-greasy
  • Protects and heals hands even after hand washing
  • Fairly traded and sustainably produced
  • Cruelty-free


  • Has a fairly strong scent reminiscent of baby powder, which some people don’t care for


Best Drugstore Hand Cream for Extremely Dry Hands

Burt’s Bees Ultimate Care Hand Cream


Burt's Bees Ultimate Care Hand Cream By Burts Bees for Unisex - 3.2 Oz Hand Cream, 3.2 Oz


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Burt’s Bees specializes in natural beauty and health care products and have great quality ingredients at drugstore prices.

This 99.9% natural Ultimate Care Cream is designed to be used on hands, but people use it on very dry skin all over their bodies, and many even use it on their face, because it doesn’t clog pores and gently exfoliates.

The Burt’s Bees Ultimate Care Hand Cream is designed to smooth and repair tough, dry skin. It nourishes and moisturizes with baobab oil, watermelon seed oil, pumpkin oil, and green tea extract to provide deep, lasting hydration without greasiness.

It also has gentle, botanical exfoliants that help promote new cell growth and natural skin renewal, for softer, younger-looking hands. It’s hypoallergenic, made without fragrances, parabens, phthalates, and cruelty-free.



  • Natural nourishing and hydration
  • Gentle exfoliation
  • Hypoallergenic


  • Although it has no added fragrance, it does have a scent that smells a bit medicinal

Best Anti-Aging Hand Cream for Mature Dry Hands

Biotherm Biomains Age Delaying Hand and Nail Treatment


Biotherm Biomains Age Delaying Hand & Nail Treatment - Water Resistant 50ml/1.69oz

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Even when the skin isn’t dehydrated, hands tend to age faster than any other part of the body. Providing extra moisture and nutrition to the hands helps to maintain a youthful look and keep the skin soft and supple.

The Biotherm Biomains Age Delaying Hand and Nail Treatment is soothing and hydrating, with a fast-absorbing, non-greasy feel.

This cream treats both the hands and nails, with d-panthenol that strengthens and improves the nails. Antioxidant vitamin F helps to reduce lines and wrinkles and improve the appearance of age-related spots on the hands, while UV filters prevent new spots from forming.

This cream creates a lasting protective barrier that seals in hydration and seals out UV damage.



  • Hand and nail care formula
  • Strengthens nails and hydrates skin
  • Reduces the appearance of brown spots and wrinkles
  • Provides UV protection
  • Non-greasy feel
  • Restores natural hydration barrier


  • Not that budget friendly if frequently used
  • May not be intense enough hydration for extremely dry skin


Budget Alternative

Aveeno Positively Ageless Skin Strengthening Hand Cream


Aveeno Positively Ageless Skin Strengthening Hand Cream For Dry Skin, 2.7 Oz

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The Aveeno Positively Ageless Skin Strengthening Hand Cream helps to soothe and heal extra dry skin, while strengthening fragile skin and restoring the natural moisture barrier.

It contains antioxidants to help reduce the visible signs of aging and provides hydration that can last for up to 24 hours.



Best Hand Cream for Dry Hands with Sensitive Skin

IBI Ultra Hydrating Moisturizing Hand Cream For Dry & Sensitive Skin

IBI Ultra Hydrating Moisturizing Hand Cream For Dry & Senstive Skin, Green Tea 2.02 Ounce Tube (1 Pc)


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While scientists agree that cosmetic-grade mineral oil is safe to use on skin, and it provides excellent hydration, there’s no doubt that it can occasionally irritate people with sensitive skin. It can be hard to find beauty products that are safe for sensitive, delicate skin, but this hand cream from IBI is a great choice.

The IBI Ultra Hydrating Moisturizing Hand Cream For Dry & Sensitive Skin is powerful enough to moisturize hands, heels, elbows, and knees, without any harsh, irritating ingredients.

Formulated with shea butter, green tea, olive, and herbs, the fast-absorbing cream leaves the skin hydrated and glowing, without a greasy feeling.

It contains no benzophenone, no parabens, no dyes, no mineral oil, no triclosan, no talc, and no animal byproducts.



  • Fast-absorbing and non-greasy
  • Safe for sensitive skin with no harsh ingredients
  • No mineral oil
  • Provides deep hydration on hands, feet, elbows, and knees


  • Has an herbal scent that some people don’t care for


Signs of Extremely Dry Skin on the Hands

Extremely dry hands can be difficult to care for, so the earlier you start moisturizing, the better. To help you figure out if you have extremely dry hands, here is some additional information.

The reason that hands tend to dry and age so quickly is because the skin on our hands is different than the skin anywhere else on the body.

The hands have a high density of sweat glands that regulate body temperature, but very few sebaceous glands that naturally hydrate.

The skin on the back of the hands is extremely thin, with very little fatty tissue that might plump the skin and make it look more youthful.

As a result, hands tend to dry very quickly, even under the best circumstances.

But what are the signs of “extremely” dry skin on the hands?

  • Hands feel dry and sensitive
  • Skin feels “tight,” especially after washing or showering
  • Hands look dry and rough or wrinkled
  • Skin may have fine cracks or scaly patches, particularly around the cuticles
  • These may also be a sign of a more serious health condition, such as psoriasis or eczema, particularly if the skin of the hands has inflamed or itchy patches


TLC for extremely dry hands

When you think about it, taking care of your hands is taking care of yourself. After all, your hands are how you reach out to the world.

Keeping them nourished and hydrated can be difficult, particularly when you need to wash them frequently and repeatedly, but necessary. Not just by moisturizing, you should also wear sun protection for your hands. Remember to take care of your hands, no matter the state of your skin!

If you also have dry skin on your face or body, check out our recommendations:

Do you have a favorite hand cream for very dry hands?

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