We use our hands every day to touch and handle things. The skin of the hands is very different from that of other parts of the body. The skin on the palms is also completely different from the back of the hand:
The skin on the palms and fingertips:
- has a thick and firm horny layer
- is rich in adipose tissue and connective tissue
- is well lined with fabric that is insensitive to pressure
- contains no hair and has no sebaceous glands
- contains a large concentration of sweat glands
- is more likely to be deficient in natural moisturizing factors
The skin on the back of the hand:
- contains almost no adipose tissue
- is very thin
- contains fine hairs
Because the skin on the palms is different from that on the back of the hand, the overall formation of the hydrolipidic film (the emulsion of fat and water that coats the outside of the skin) is weak. As a result, our hands dry out quickly when overloaded.
Our hands work very hard. During a day's work at home, in the office or in the garden, they are often exposed to external factors that dry out the skin. This can be caused by excessive contact with water, but also by exposure to chemicals and temperature changes. This quickly overloads the skin's natural protection and repair systems, which can lead to damage to the skin's barrier function.
- When washing your hands, use lukewarm or cold water to prevent the skin from drying out. Only use soap when your hands are really dirty. If your hands are not really dirty, a soft hand brush is sufficient. With most hand soaps you wash away your own skin fats so that the skin dries out faster.
- Care for your hands regularly with a nourishing hand cream to prevent the skin from becoming damaged, dry and cracked, which quickly leads to problems such as contact dermatitis due to irritation.