The culprit: Over-washing
Over-washing is especially problematic for the hands, Dr. Vignjevic says. “People wash their hands a lot, and you can definitely get hand dermatitis, caused by both the water and the soap.” He recommends reducing your exposure by wearing gloves for activities that involve your hands getting wet, like cooking or washing the dishes. When you do clean your hands, avoid harsh soaps (for example, those with “antiseptic” or “antibacterial” on the label), and be sure to apply moisturizer afterward—keep a bottle by the sink so you don’t forget. Hot baths and showers can also dry out your skin, so reduce the temperature or spend less time underwater. You can also try bath oils and other moisture-rich products.