Dry cracked fingers and elbows?

Every winter my fingers crack open on the side tips, this year it's also the elbows! I use unscented Aveno lotion, but it does not prevent it.

Since the cracking, I've tried Neosporin, Desitin, and coconut oil, but am not having much success.

Any suggestions?


When I was a wee bit younger, in college and in my twenties and pretty, one could purchase purified (mostly to take out the mutton odor), 100% lanolin in most of the big chain pharmacies. It's not so easy to find it if at all. However, the product has migrated ebay.


Keep hands out of water as much as possible.

I don't always listen to my own advice. But I think I'm going to order it.

You got to hold on.

I'd suggest seeing a dermatologist. There are some prescription lotions, ointments, and creams that will work better than what you can get over the counter.

I highly recommend O’Keeffe’s Working Hands Hand Cream for dry cracked fingers! It’s the only thing that works for me! And I have tried everything but always had 2 or 3 or more horribly sore split open fingertips!

My doctor gave me some cream to use and it does help some but my hands peel for weeks after I use it.

I have recently started using coconut oil at bedtime on my cuticles, dry spots, my face, and during the day on lips, It can be used to remove eye makeup and many other uses. It is wonderful and it only takes a LITTLE bit. Too much and you will know it!! Experience will tell you how much to use. It melts into the skin, where the lotions just sit on top.

Have you ever tried dipping your hands and feet in warm wax? It is an inexpensive treatment you can get in a nail salon. You can also purchase the wax and dispenser at a place like "Sally's". It is also used as a treatment for arthritis.

Oh! I forgot about the paraffin treatments! I have had them for my hands from time to time to ease pain. The added bonus of that really is super soft skin. Aveno has never worked well for me. I keep Eucerin on my kitchen sink and use it very often. I also keep a bottle of lotion from Bath & Body works on my desk at work. Its a little pricey though. This may sound weird but when I get tattoos I use Cetaphil. Its important to keep the skin moist while its healing and going through the peeling & shedding part and the stuff is amazing. Its light weight feeling but it works. I have heard people here mention Neutrogena Norwegian formula as being amazing but I haven't tried it yet. Its on Amazon and at wholesalers like Costco and BJs.

I have had success with Neutrogena Hand Cream. It is very rich. I also know of someone who put baby oil in the bath tube when they bathed. They said it helped.

Sorry you are having this challenge. Dry skin is a challenge for me also. Good luck!

I get deep cracks in my fingers and recently my knuckles, too. A product I have found helpful, not for prevention, but for healing of the cracks, is liquid bandage.

I forgot to mention the elbows. I wash them with dove soap, then apply cortizone cream daily.

Has anyone tried that new product, I think its Nivea, that you put on in the shower? Its a moisturizer that you use when you are done with your shower, you put it on then rinse off. Its supposed to lock in moisture, I guess. I just started seeing ads for it. I wonder how well it actually works or if it just feels slimy. LOL

Hi, I use an organic product made locally. It has a lanolin base with calendula and manuka honey. You may be able to find something local to you. I could also send you some, email me your details at ■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■

Oh lots!! I buy a lot of special stuff for mom to help with this.

I HIGHLY recommend try washing with VitaMyr soap or goatsmilk soap. Windrift is a good brand for goatsmilk soap, but there's scads of others making it out there... Vitamyr is very anti-inflammatory so if you've got red painful hands that one helps.

We've prevented a lot of cracks just by switching to natural soaps like those.

If soap is too drying, sugar scrubs (basically sugar + oil... no soap) and salt scrubs can be unbelievable good at cleaning in an extremely moisturizing way. You'll walk out of the shower velvety instead of dried up. I'd avoid most mass marketed sugar scrubs b/c they put gross silicon in it and it usually feels nasty sticky. Go for homemade or all natural. I think rosehip oil is highly absorb-able. I've also heard good things about emu oil. There are lots of recipes out there for sugar scrubs you can customize with things that work for you like aloe, vitamin e oil etc.

When trying new stuff... always test it on your hands and feet first.

Beyond that, try Made On Hard Lotion bars (beeswax lotion is AMAZING). Love that stuff. Very powerful especially when you already have cracks... you can STILL use the hard lotion as a moisturizing "bandaid" ON the crack! And if you cook a lot, you can prepare foods/eat finger foods without washing the lotion off b/c its all natural. It sells online on its own dedicated website, or locally in California.

You could also try whipped tallow butter as a natural alternative to vaseline. Ranch Rustics is a farm that makes it and sells on Etsy. The great thing about tallow butter is that it resembles the sebum produced by skin... saturated fats are fantastic for skin.

A lot of these I mentioned are not grocery store brands, they are small businesses with niche products made specifically for extreme dryness.

From the store I've really only liked Jergens.

Hope that inspires you!! And hope you feel better!

Wow…great info.

Oh and correction. I keep Curel on the kitchen sink. It helps a lot but I use it often after washing my hands or doing dishes, etc.

Thanks everyone, with your suggestions, my finger tips and elbows are healing!

Great news!!!!

The best thing I ever used was a lotion with tea tree oil in it. I cannot get it anymore, and I have not looked for an equivalent. I do like Crabtree and Evelyn hand lotions a lot. It is best, if you skin is particularly bad, to wear cotton gloves and socks over the lotion at night. You can get white cotton gloves at the pharmacy. Additionally, Barielle foot cream is great as a night time hand and foot treatment. Vermont Trading Company sells it, I believe. You should stay away from antibacterial soaps, and, I know, teach, reduce hand washing, if you can.

I put vasaline on my hands at night before bed. It helps a lot! Than during the day I use nivea cream.

one more thing. I use massage oil on my legs and arms before bed, it helps hydrate the skin.

Vasaline is also good on feet at night and put a pair of socks on so you dont slip.