Preventing & Healing Split Fingertips In Winter

The snow has decided to stay a while here in Ohio. It snowed every day for 3-4 days in a row and the temps have stayed quite low. I’m not used to seeing this view out my windshield when driving.

 

All the neighborhoods look like this one. The snow plows have been coming through several times a day, so the roads are in pretty good shape.

 

I was amazed how quickly my car started after weathering so many snow storms and sitting outside in minus temps overnight. It’s used to a cushier life living inside a garage at home. I think this photo was taken after the first couple of days of snow, so we actually got more than you see here.

I had planned to leave and head back home yesterday, but when I looked out the window yesterday morning, I realized there was no way for me to get my large, heavy suitcase to the car without dragging it through all the snow. If I had thought about it, my son and I could have each grabbed an end and carried it to the car the night before.

 

So I decided to stay one more day thinking we would do that last night. Apparently Mother Nature has other plans because now it’s snowing again here in the south making the interstates a treacherous mess today. It looks like the temps will rise by Thursday, so I should be able to head back home soon. Now that I think about it, the snow probably would not have hurt my bag if I had just gone ahead and dragged it down the lawn to the car, after all it’s just snow.

You know the thing that I’ve found that I dislike the most about snow, especially snow that sticks around for several days? It’s the parking lots. When I went out to do a bit of shopping with my son a few days ago, all the parking lots were a big, slushy, salty mess. It’s so gross to walk through them, then you have to get into your car with all that slush on your boots. Ugh. I definitely would not want to live where this was a regular thing for days or months on end. I would turn into a hermit and would start having all my food delivered by Amazon. Seriously…I wouldn’t come out of my house for months! lol

 

A Problem This Time of Year: Cracking, Splitting Fingertips

Update: Be sure and check out all the great comments at the end of this post. There are so many excellent suggestions of products that have worked well for others!

Every winter I run into issues with my finger tips getting little fissures or cracks in the skin…and oh, do they hurt! Do you have this problem, too? It usually happens when I’m doing a good bit of cleaning around the house and have my hands in water a lot. Between the cleaning and the heat running all day, it’s the perfect recipe for cracking fingertips.

My daughter-in-law has been having the same problem and we were discussing possible solutions. I watched a video online that said the reason the skin on our fingers cracks is because the skin dries out, losing its natural oils/moisture, then it begins to crack/pull apart due to dryness. The doctor in the video said the answer is moisture…if you keep the skin moisturized, the crack will gradually close in just 3-4 days. He recommended putting Neosporin or Bacitracin on the cracked finger.

In the past I’ve often used Neosporin at night along with a band-aid because there’s nothing worse than waking up with a fingertip throbbing in pain. I’ve heard that our fingers/toes don’t get as much circulation as other parts of our body, so I think they are more easily infected. The Neosporin has really helped when I’ve remembered to use it at night.

My daughter-in-law has started using Burt’s Bees Lemon Butter Cuticle Cream and she gave me this tin to try. I’ve been using it during the day while I’ve been here and it has helped a lot. Of course, you do have to reapply it if you have your hands in water a lot. It’s available here: Cuticle Cream.

Burt's Bees Lemon Butter Cuticle Cream

 

I decided to investigate last night to see what other options were out there.  I figure if my dil and I are both suffering with cracked fingertips right now, we can’t be the only ones. I found a couple of things online that I’m going to try. This product had great reviews and specifically mentioned that it helped with dry, cracked fingertips. It’s available here: Cutemol

Update on 2-9-17: Adding this info so you’ll know what worked for my finger that was so badly split. I used Neosporin on the cracks at night and wore a band-aid loosly at night to keep the Neosporin in place. Then I religiously used Cutemol throughout the day…around 5-6 times a day, especially anytime I had my hands in water for a while, like after washing dishes. Cutemol is AMAZING! My finger healed up and I haven’t had any more problems with splitting fingers. 

After my finger healed completely, I’ve cut back to using Cutemol 2-3 times a day during these winter months. I always put it on again if I’ve had my hands in water. I’ve also been using it on my feet, and it has done wonders for the dryness there, too. I can’t recommend it highly enough!

So, in summary…what worked for my cracked split fingers was to apply Neosporin on the split areas at night and wear a band-aid to keep the Neosporin on the finger. The Neosporin also seemed to help with the pain, maybe because it kept my finger from getting infected. Then I used Cutemol throughout the day to keep my hands/fingers protected.

One thing you should know, Cutemol is very thick/rich, so you don’t have to use a lot. AND after you rub it all over your hands, it will take about 10-15 minutes to fully soak in. So apply it when you aren’t going to need to use your hands for a few minutes. It’s very rich/sticky when you first put it on, but it will absorb after about 10-15 minutes.

It’s the best lotion I’ve ever found for coping with winter dryness. I will always have some on hand to use during the winter now that I’ve seen how well it works. Cutemol is available here: Cutemol.

 

I also ordered Crack Zapit. It had good reviews and looked like it would be a convenient size to carry in my handbag. The reviews said it’s a good preventive measure to avoid getting cracked fingertips. It’s available here: Crack Zapit.

In addition to keeping your fingertips moisturized and protected with the above products, try to wear gloves whenever you’re washing dishes or cleaning and know that you’ll have your hands in water a lot throughout the day.

How do you avoid getting dry, cracked fingertips in the wintertime when the heat is running inside so much? If you do get a cracked fingertip, what’s your favorite way of healing it quickly? Would love to hear how you deal with this issue. It’s amazing how such a tiny crack/opening in a fingertip can hurt so badly, isn’t it?!

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Comments

  1. Peggy Kuppers says:

    Thanks for the skin care tips. I have had the same problem with cracked skin and it is painful. I have used all the same solutions that you did and the cracks healed, but I am happy to see that there are some other products that can be used. And you are so right about the parking lots! We lived in western Mass many years ago and that was what I hated the most. We love in the NC mountains and have a couple of inches of snow this morning. Unfortunately, there is ice under the snow in many places so travel is dangerous. I will be so happy when spring arrives! Hope your trip back is safe.

  2. I get those painful cracks and I use Liquid Bandage or New Skin. Both are antiseptic and Seal and heal the split with a few days. Great for when a band-aid won’t fit.

  3. My fingertips crack every winter. I put liquid bandage on them until they heal, since I play piano and organ, and bandaids get in the way. This year I’ve been using Aquafor a couple of times a day, and it is helping to prevent the cracks.
    I’ve also learned this year that I need to clear all the snow off my car before I drive. In some states it is illegal to drive with snow on the car (and I have certainly done it in other years). Chunks of snow flying off vehicles are hazardous to those behind them. It’s a pain to clear it, but a broom helps.
    Have a safe trip home!

  4. My husband enjoys woodworking as a hobby and he swears by CrackZapIt! The small tube makes it handy for a pocket or purse. Watkins Menthal Salve is also great.
    Safe travels Susan!

  5. I moisturize with a good bit of Healthy Hands every day. But I still get cracks around my fingers. I use Chapstick or Blistek and rub it on the cracks when I am at work or out and about and at night. The crack usually heals in a day. This tip came from a friend who was a park ranger. That’s what he and his friends had always used.

  6. franki parde says:

    OMgosh…”our” world!! Cracked “thumbs” and…sNOw!! My hubbie was working on our car and his cracked terribly…he was wearing duct tape!! Every night I’d put honey-butter on and other ointments. Our daughter finally got us “O’Keeffe’s” Working Hands…so far, so good. That liquid skin sounds like “a try!” SAFE TRAVELS!! franki

    • Yes to the O’Keefes. I am a dentist and wash hands about a million times a day. My dental assistant always has issues with her fingertips cracking in the winter (and we live in balmy Virginia). Well this year I noticed it for the first time ever and she turned me onto the O’Keefes. It doesn’t feel the best going on so I put it on at night before bed. When I wake up my hands feel much better! As long as I use it routinely no more cracking. I will occasionally put it on during the day (on the weekend) right after I wash my hands.

  7. Using Neutrogena “Norwegian Formula” Hand Cream really helps prevent the cracks from even starting!!

  8. If I am immersing my hands in water while cleaning, I always always always wear rubber gloves. No cracked fingertips. It has been steadily snowing here all morning in Upstate SC. It will warm up then refreeze into black ice, so be careful coming home!

  9. I live in the Buffalo area, and I do become somewhat of a hermit for 4 months of the year. We basically have snow on the ground for months at a time. I hear you about the parking lots, slush in car, etc. But you adapt and get used to it. I used to have cracked finger tips when my children were young, thinking it was from constant diaper changing and washing my hands. It sort of disappeared over the years, although I still have my hands in water a lot. Thanks for the tips in case I need any products.

  10. I use and swear by sween cream. I also use super glue ( dermatologist recommended) when I get a fissure.

    • I am using Badger Balm for hardworking hands during the day and neosporin at night. When I got a manicure recently he used superglue and that worked wonders -holding it together for awhile. The nurses at work used liquid bandage and my future grandson was thrilled with his gift set of O’Keeffe products I got him for Christmas. Lots of good options. This is the first year I’ve been in this cracked fingers club and I’m not fond of it. Lol

      • I completely understand it’s miserable. What really helped me was a lotion I purchased on Amazon called Cutemol. It is amazing. Put it on your feet and hands at night and you wake up with babies skin. Also I purchased some New Skin Liquid Bandage that someone had mentioned in the comments. It’s like the super glue trick, except it’s designed for this. I don’t need it right now since the Cutemol worked and my finger is healed, but I’m glad I have it on hand for the next time. Hopefully there won’t be a next time since I’m using Cutemol for the winter months now.

  11. At night I use Vicks and cover with a bandaid.

  12. Every winter I have this problem with the same spot on the same thumb. Unbelievable how bad it hurts! I’ve found a great healing cream bought at my local “independent” pharmacy, called No Crack Cream and Ointments. Comes in a little jar and works great.

  13. We live in Michigan so dry skin is a big problem. I have problems with cracks in my heels. Massaging my feet with Vasoline every day has totally eliminated that problem plus my hands are soft and my nails have gotten stronger! It might help with the cracks on your fingers. I love snow, but I really hate that we just can’t have clean cars! And garages!

  14. Eneatha "Ernie" Secrest says:

    I use the Neosporin at night like hand cream and wear brown jersey gloves. I have tried by process of elimination and have found that Great Value sugar substitute may be the culprit for me, I use it in my coffee, cereal, cooking, etc and have stopped and have gotten great relief. I used Splenda for a very long time but switched to save money. I also use a silicone based hand cream during the day (AVON Silicone Glove) which is wonderful, it seems to hold in the moisture.

  15. Glad you are staying put! Here in Memphis we have had round 2 of snow. Friday was mostly sleet then mostly snow Monday night. It is absolutely freezing! High today of 26. That’s okay cuz Sunday it looks like it will be 62 ! Got to love living in the south! I have found my hands have survived this winter using Nivea cream in the blue jar. I use it every night before bed as well as several times through the day. They also make a purse size tin. My son uses it as well and likes that it will not leave a oil residue. I

  16. Susan // I recommend Mary Kay Extra Emollient Night cream ($15) for women, men, and children. It is the best healing and protectant for dry, chapped skin – no matter where it is. ( I know a gynecologist that recommends it instead of hormone cream. )
    Apply it at night and as often as possible during the day. Incredible for chapped cheeks and lips that my grandchildren suffer with. I can mail it to anyone [email protected]. Free shipping. 2.1oz tube + travel/purse size tube. Guaranteed to work when you use it regularly. You’ll be amazed!! Jeannie http://www.marykay.com/jterry
    (Love your blog // great way to keep up with you!!)

  17. Cyndi Raines says:

    Welcome to the North Susan! I KNEW once the blush of the “pretty deep snow” wore off and you tramped around in it, you wouldn’t like it! Haha. By the end of February we are really tired of it too and Can’t wait for March to be over. (Hubby hates it now, would love to go south for winter.) You must come back in July and August when our weather is in the high 70’s or mid to high 80’s and you can relax by one of our Great Lakes, it’s SO beautiful and relaxing, a nice respite from that Georgia heat and humidity. As far as fingers cracking and splitting, yes it is very painful. Usually my thumbs and index fingers crack, but over the years I have learned to keep the humidifer going all day and night, ALWAYS wear a good hand lotion after washing hands, I like Gold Bond Healing and if I do end up getting a split, immediately use the Liquid Band Aid and apply until totally healed. I also have a hot wax machine that is really nice and relaxing. You place your hands in warm melted wax, dipping them 5 or 6 times to build up a nice coating and then you let it harden After about 10 minutes or so, you gently peel off the wax and it exfoliates the dead skin away and leaves your hands really soft and lubricated. Lastly, I also used a good sugar srub to do basically the same thing as the wax but much faster. You can even make your own sugar scrubs which are fun to do and very inexpensive compared to store bought ones. Sorry, this is lengthy, but I too have dealt with this my adult life and have to say now that I am retired and not working with paper, which is very drying to hands, I am doing much better. Last suggestion, keep up with drinking lots of water to stay hydrated. I think in the winter, because it is so cold we don’t drink as much water and that may be a factor also. Glad you had a good time with your family, will pray for safe travels for you on your trek homeward. ♥️

  18. Hi Susan, You might try “Farmer’s Friend Salve”. Farmers around here have used it on animals and on themselves. We use it and it works.

  19. I bought a box of white cotton gloves on Amazon (my husband and I wear the same size) and several nights a week I rub Aquaphor onto my hands and pop on the gloves before going to bed. The gloves can be washed and reused several times. This is the first winter that I have tried this, and the first winter I’ve not had cracked fingers. It works well for my husband as well, and it’s even more important for him as he has a compromised immune system and has to be careful of infection.

  20. My husband had a problem with cracking and bleeding fingertips for years before I discovered chickweed salve. I first bought it locally at a craft fair, then that vendor stopped making it. I finally found Amish Origins Old Time Chickweed Salve at a local store but it is also available online. It has worked like a charm for him for several years now. He uses it at bedtime. I highly recommend it.

  21. Martha Shetley says:

    As a nurse, I also use Neutrogena Norwegian Formula. I put it on every night and it prevents cracking. It starts out feeling greasy but quickly absorbs. Doesn’t take a lot!

  22. I have found that if I coat my hands really well with a good cream just before going to bed and sleep in gloves, I avoid this problem. Ulta sells white cotton lightweight gloves that are perfect. Trust me ; you’ll go to sleep and never know you have them on. This works!

  23. I used to blame those finger fissures on the fact that as a florist, I had my hands wet all the time, but since I’ve retired, I still get them now and then. My cure is to slather my hands with cold-pressed castor oil and wear medical gloves to bed. I also do that with my feet and wear socks to bed. I wish I had some “rubber gloves” for my feet. A bad fissure can be healed in 2-3 days this way.

  24. I have the same problem during the winter. Yes, Neosporin helps overnight if a crack develops. The only thing that works for me is a product that was developed for carpenters and construction workers. O’Keeffe’s Working Hands Hand Cream. It comes in a little green tub. Buy it at Home Depot in the paint aisle or if you have a Harmon’s beauty supply store they have it too.

  25. Jane McMurray says:

    I have to ditto the gal who mentioned “super glue” for the particularly deep and difficult fissures. They use it to close incisions in surgery so makes sense that it works for these types of wounds. Just use it sparingly, apply multiple thin layers. It will wear off eventually (few days) but reapply and soon new growth of the tissue should fill in underneath it. Maddening here in Wisconsin…SO cold this year. BRRR!

  26. Vikki Barnette says:

    Yep, get painful split skin on my fingers every winter and sometimes in the summer if I don’t wear my garden gloves when weeding. I’m going to give the liquid skin a try.
    This year one of the members of the legislature is proposing a bill to make it a crime not to clean the snow off the top of your vehicle before taking to the road. Here in SE Virginia we don’t see much snow, with the exception of this year!!! We had almost 2 feet a few weeks ago and are expecting a few inches today. We still have some large piles of snow covered in dirt at intersections and parking lots. I’m so over the snow. Hurry Spring! Have a safe trip home. Vikki in VA

  27. I’ve always used Vaseline on my hands and feet and wear gloves and socks to bed, works great!!!

  28. Chris Wells says:

    Hi Susan! You are having quite a winter, first Germany and now Ohio in January! Wish I knew where you were, I am from Bath, Ohio just outside of Akron and I know it is cold. I always keep my eye on the weather up there! I actually miss that weather….but I guess it is whatever you grew up with!
    Also, if you already have one of those painful cracks seal it with super glue! Instant relief! I use it all the time now! It is amazing.

  29. stephanie says:

    As mentioned above that Mary Kay handcream is amazing. I don’t sell it – am just a customer – but have been using it for years. It’s pricey but worth it.

    I also swear by L’Occitane “Shea Butter”. It comes in a tin like the Burts Bees above. It is expensive but lasts forever and it WORKS.

    https://www.sephora.com/product/100-pure-shea-butter-P39675?skuId=1720143&icid2=products%20grid:p39675

  30. Claudette Flanigan says:

    I never clean or even wash dishes without gloves. And I am always using hand cream. Here in Connecticut it is definitely against the law to drive with snow on your car. My husband and I recently saw a car with chunks of snow hurling off their roof on the highway. So dangerous to anyone behind them. It is actually snowing here as I write this. We are used to it and really the only day we don’t venture out is when the snow is falling (unless we really have to). But the next day we are all out living our normal day. As someone else said…”you adapt”. All part of the price of living in New England and to me totally worth it.

  31. Sandra D, Joliet says:

    I too use O’Keeffe’s Working Hands Hand Cream. I have the tubs next to my bed and crafting chair. I carry a tube in my purse. My fingers still have dry spots but they don’t crack fully. I crochet, sew, quilt and cross stitch. The yarn, thread and fabric sucks the oil out of my hands like a sponge. Washing dishes made my hands miserable too. I developed eczema on my hands a lot. I can’t wear Playtex gloves to wash dishes so I wear Medical non-latex gloves. No ointment or cream EVER helped get rid of eczema. It felt like my bones were itching inside-I tried not to rub or scratch but the itching was so intense. My hands literally was a bloody mess and then when it was healing, full of hard and awful scabs. Miserable and ugly! When I changed doctors about 10 years ago he gave me a cortizone shot in the upper arm-stopped the itching within 24 hours!!!! I would get them about every 6 months as soon as I seen the teeny tiny blisters or when they began to itch. I think it was stress related because since I retired I have not had a break out. It is bliss to find a remedy for Eczema and something to help ease the fingertip cracks. NOW, I need something that works for chapped lips and the skin immediately around my lips. I try not to lick my lips and I think I don’t but some things you do without realizing. Chap stick type products don’t prevent it or I don’t apply it enough or something.

  32. Patricia Rio says:

    I too use O’Keeffe’s Working Hands Cream. It does an amazing job of healing cracked skin; and it can be used daily to prevent the cracks from developing.

  33. Wow, and I was complaining about the 2.4 inches we got here in NE Georgia overnight! Please drive carefully coming home!
    Duluth Trading Company has a “No crack super hand cream” which works great for me for dry hands, and pretty inexpensive. Or plain old udder balm, found at Tractor Supply is great too. Love it in summer while gardening as well as winter, because some planting things just cant be done wearing gloves! 🙂

  34. Smith’s Rosebud Salve works good on dry cuticles, I rub it into my fingertips and cuticles at night then use Curel lotion on my hands and feet. This is my nightly ritual year round and I’ve never had cracked fingers or feet.

    How do people up north get that salt off the bottom of their cars? I would be concerned about damage to my car after driving through the salted areas.

  35. Nancy Overholt says:

    I fill the crack up wth super glue. Takes away the pain and heals from the inside out. Our missionary friends use Super glue instead of stitches in Haiti

    • Chris Wells says:

      It is my understanding that super glue was invented for the purpose of sealing battle wounds and was used during the Vietnam era. While it does have some toxicity, it is best to try to prevent those cracks, but once I get one, out comes the super glue…instant pain relief!

  36. I thought I was one of only a few people who have cracked fingers in the winter. I remember my grandmother having cracked fingers and I just thought I got it from her. I have tried most of the solutions mentioned. I use the Neopsorin and bandaids at night. Sometimes I have to do it two nights in a row but fingers heal. It is very painful.

  37. You have gotten plenty of advice regarding the cracked skin but I’ll throw in my 2 cents! I use Aveda products and their Hand Relief works great for me. I also use Cetaphil Intensive Moisturizing Cream. The most effective time is before bed to really work it in. Using gloves to wash dishes is a definite help too. I’ve had to resort to using my nail cutters to nip away the outer skin of the split and it seems to speed up the healing process. Don’t use your teeth as there is bacteria you’re adding and it can cause a nasty infection. I’m glad you used caution about traveling today.

  38. Vasoline, cheap, effective and fast healing.

  39. While we are on the subject of protecting our skin, in addition to the chickweed salve to prevent cracked fingers, I would recommend Just Wanna Melt products. They are all natural products developed by a nurse, first for her own needs. My favorite is the scrub bar. After showering with your favorite product, rub the scrub bar over your wet skin, then rinse and pat dry. It exfoliates and leaves a protective coating on your skin. Water beads up as you rinse off and the results far outlast creams and lotions. I recommend it to all my friends and give it for gifts. The only caveat is for those allergic to latex as it does contain Shea butter. The products are available on line and in some Whole Foods. The lotion bar is another favorite.

  40. I use GlyMiracle and you can get it at Amazon. Trader Joe’s also has a good had cream. My son in law has found it really works for him. My hair dresser recommended Gly Miracle for me and it really works. It’s used to be found at Beauty Supply. I use it before bed and sometimes during the day.

  41. My problem is split thumbnail. I use a mixture
    Of essential oils and then hand creme. I keep my nail trim short, and am hoping the split heals. Any other solutions or remedies would be helpful. Thanks!

  42. The cheapest solution is something I learned from a home ec teacher in 8th grade. She swore by it. She said to rub Vaseline on your hands at night and a sock or glove and go to sleep. In the morning baby soft hands. Unfortunately, I wear contacts so that leaves a residue, …..not good but triple ointment antiseptic works on the cracks….but this year it is a constant issue running after and cleaning up after puppy puddles. My poor hands. My grandmother used Vaseline on her wrinkles when she reached her 80s. Her skin was beautiful.

  43. My neighbor is the scientist who invented surgical super glue and liquid bandage. He gave me some samples and I have been using it ever since. But I also take Biotin for Hair, Nails and Skin which is a vitamin supplement that helps keep your nails strong because all that time spent with your hands in water and cleaning chemicals wreacks havoc on my nails too.

  44. Susan, cracked finger tips during the winter are a huge problem for me! I apply Super Glue to keep them sealed together & speed healing. I can’t seem to keep my hands moisturized enough to prevent them

  45. When will you learn? You go south in the winter and north in the summer? LOL. I don’t get cracked fingertips after living in the Caribbean for 28 years and now Mexico for almost 8. It’s painless cure for chapped skin.

  46. Anita Luff says:

    I’ve used cocoa butter with vitamin E and a bandaid overnight.

  47. I’m so excited to try some of these hand remedies! I get the cracks too & they are just so painful! I just got one today while shopping & it started bleeding so I had to be careful until I could get my hands on a bandage. I keep Neosporin on my nightstand & in my purse because it helps the pain, otherwise it just throbs & makes it hard to sleep. A friend just recommended O’Keeffe’s. A doctor once recommended super glue but I kept wanting to pick at it. It drove me crazy. I’ll have to look into some of the other suggestion on here!

  48. donna a zoltanski says:

    Dry skin! Stinks! I have also used Mary Kay Extra Emoillent cream – it’s great, O’Keefes too – vaseline – just have to keep applying. Have a safe trip back home – enjoy that pretty “Snowy white” view!

  49. diane in northern wis says:

    We’ve been using Super Glue for years and every winter when we get a crack in our thumbs, we use it with good results!

  50. You sure learn a lot here. My friend carries a cheap tube of chaperoning to use on fingers. It works and it is easy to carry.

  51. Linda Maple Maus says:

    Yes, this has plagued me too. I have used the bacitracin, Neosporin or triple antibiotic on the split. At night, I use the bacitracin and a bandaid. I also use the bacitracin and bandaid during the day, but yes, because of putting our hands in water, it had to be reapplied. My dermatologist recommended to me using super glue. I buy the small bottle with a brush that I find in the fingernail section at Walgreens. That also helps.

  52. Run, don’t walk to your nearest CVS, Walmart or Amazon and buy a tub of Egyptian Magic. It’s made of 5 natural ingredients including Royal jelly & honey. It does not have a strong, sweet smell as you might expect. It’s a salve…use it on hands, feet, elbows, lips, face…goes on a little greasy, absorbs quickly though. It’s a lifesaver for this 60-something redhead with terminally dry, red skin!!

    • I swear by Egyptian Magic too-I have hand eczema and extremely dry skin-this is the only thing that works for me.

  53. This has been such a problemail this winter. I bought disposible plastic gloves. I’ve applied hand lotion. This helped the back of my hand but not my finger tips. I heard a radio tip about being dehydrated in the winter. Have increased my fluids. Hopefully the combination of disposible gloves, cream, and increased fluids will help.
    Apparently dehydration is just a big of a problem in winter as it is in the summer.

  54. I have been using Avon Moisture Therapy Intensive Healing & Repair Hand Cream for years. It’s very inexpensive and works great. ..I make sure to use it before bed and every time I go outside. Love it!

  55. Amen to the Neutrogena–it is my “go to” formula, never fails me. My mother used Nivea cream–they make a small, flat tin that is easily slipped into one’s purse–it was recommended by her dermatologist for daily maintenance. Stay warm, Susan and be careful on the roads–Atlanta is still a mess on side roads and neighborhoods. Take care.

  56. Pick up a tin of Trader Joe’s Head to to Balm. This winter I’ve used it for chapped lips and both dry hands and feet and it really helps. Massage balm into cuticles and ends of fingers–this stuff has worked for me. The scent and texture are pleasant and it isn’t greasy feeling at all. Safe travel back to the south.

  57. My husband had the same issue. A friend told him to take vitamin B-12 daily. It has helped him immensely.

  58. Linda Santos says:

    Love all the suggestions. Can’t wait to try some as I suffer also. In addition to all the above remedies I use a liquid hand soap with some kind of oil in it….olive, coconut, argan. It’s not as drying.

  59. Michelle Harris says:

    So many good suggestions. I’ve been plagued for many years, often wearing band-aids on two or three fingers at a time. My issue is my knuckles and along the side of the fingers and always on my right hand! My dermatologist told me to keep my hands out of water, but you have to wash your hands so often during the day. So I’ve used O’Keefes with mixed results and have recently (last 2 weeks) used a coconut oil rich sugar scrub and my hands are better that they have ever been. Of course all the meds I was on for my bout of acute bronchitis may have also played a part! Thanks for the post and all the suggestions from your readers that came as a result. I’ve never heard of the chickweed salve and will have to remember the super glue tip too!

  60. In the dry winter months, I switch from using liquid Softsoap on my hands to Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser – this is the same cleanser I use on my face every day. It’s more expensive to use as a hand soap, but it’s made for dry, sensitive skin and doesn’t strip natural oils. It comes in a pump bottle so it’s easy to use and I can put it right next to the sink. I also make sure I dry my hands thoroughly. Like others who have commented, I use an antibiotic cream and Band-Aids when I feel a crack coming on, and Vaseline and gloves at night. For cuticles, Christian Dior makes “Crème Abricot” (apricot cream) that works wonders. As little goes a long way. It’s sold at Ulta and large department stores.

  61. Original Nivea cream. Not the lotion, the cream from Germany.

  62. SharonFromMichigan says:

    Ah, cracks on the fingers, I know them well! Both of my thumbs have been cracking and healing all winter long. I try to keep my hands washed to prevent colds and flu and even with hand cream use afterwards they still crack. An older lady at my church told me every time I’m cooking in the kitchen to use butter or any kind of cooking oil and rub it on my fingertips. That only worked for a while. I might try the New Skin like someone suggested. As far as walking in the slush, nothing beats a pair of LLBean boots with the rubber sole; they’re completely waterproof and wash up with water. Unfortunately they’re not too stylish, but as long as the slush and wet can’t get to my feet I’m happy 🙂

  63. Bobbi Duncan says:

    I’ve used Neutrogena Norwegian Hand Cream since it first came on the market many years ago and therefore have never had cracked finger tips. This stuff is fantastic and you can wash your hands a few times before you need to reapply . I usually put it on before bed to give my hands a long moisturizing treatment because I don’t like putting on lotion so many times during the day. I also try to use rubber gloves because my hands get destroyed when I don’t. I use this cream on my arms and legs after every shower and I believe it’s what has kept me from having crepey skin–leaves a nice glow to your skin, too. Seeing all that snow makes me recall why I was glad to leave Ohio–that, and very few sunny days during the winter. I can handle the cold but hate dreary days. Hugs!

  64. I don’t know the magic potion to keep from having cracked fingertips. It sounds as if many readers have many wonderful suggestions. I do know the best way to heal the cracks and relieve the pain. Superglue. Plain and simple. When my husband was a bass fisherman he was constantly cutting his fingertips on the fishing line. He used Superglue constantly and made a believer out of me. Now, I can’t do without it.

  65. Deena Salvatore says:

    Hi Susan! Ugh, cracked fingers are the worst! I also have my hands in water a lot and am usually good for at least one or two cracks during the winter. My stepfather told me years ago how to deal with those painful cracks. He told me to simply use Chapstick on the crack and it not only takes the pain away, but heals it really quickly. I had been using every product I could find to help and this solution gave me serious doubts. I had nothing to loose by trying it since I always have Burts Bees lip salve or some sort of lip moisturizer on hand. On this first occasion (and many to follow) I used original Chapstick in the black and white stick/tube. Miracle of miracles when I woke up the very next morning the crack had closed and I didn’t have any residual pain. Overnight! I never looked back since and I’ve never had the need to spend money on other remedies. It worked like a charm. Give it a try and good luck. You’ll see! Deena

  66. A dot of Super Glue to the crack keeps the water out & speeds healing. Burns like heck at first though!

  67. midwestMom says:

    I suffered with those thumb cracks for years and they are unbelievably painful. Finally found a complete cure: you need to “moisturize” from the inside! I take a tablespoon of Barleans Omega Swirl (it’s a smoothie-like supplement with flax and fish oils) and haven’t had any cracked fingertips for years. I only need to take it once in awhile. This also worked for my mother and my son; we all suffered from dry chapped skin in winter.

  68. Gayle Kesinger says:

    Vaseline with a bandaid cleared the one crack I get every year on my right thumb. This worked in one day.

  69. Elizabeth Ann says:

    I am sitting here with cracked fingers (bleeding) and split nails. I don’t know where to start, so many products.

    • The best recipe I found was to put Neosporin on the deep cracks with a bandaid at night, then to religiously use Cutemol all throughout the day…like 4-5 times a day for a couple of days until my hands were better. Then I only need to use the Cutemol 2-3 times a day, depending on how much I have them in water. I just purchased “New Skin Liquid Bandage” on Amazon to keep on hand, in case I ever need it. Not sure how it will work. I like using the Neosporin at night, because it seems to help with the pain and keeps the cracks from getting infected. I’m in love with Cutemol and so is my daughter in law. I put it on my feet every night too, and it’s amazing!
      You only need to use a little because it super thick…and it takes about 15 minutes to soak in, so don’t use it right before you need to do something with your hands because they will be sticky for about 10-15 minutes.
      Check out the reviews on Cutemol at Amazon, it’s pretty awesome! Good luck, Elizabeth!

    • I should add, since I’ve been using the Cutemol 2-3 times a day (usually right after I’ve had my hands in water) I haven’t had anymore cracks appear. I don’t think I’ll need it in the summer, regular lotion will probably be fine, but it’s helping me survive the winter.

  70. I love all of your recommendations and tips. Reading your posts makes me feel better, remembering that the small things in life DO matter. I especially loved your article on the movie Practical Magic. After I finished your article I had the chance to see the movie again and saw it through new eyes. How I wish that was a real house. Thanks for all of your effort. At the end of a long day, it’s nice to read your peaceful words. Thanks, Kathy

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