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Stay Safe and Naturally Avoid Dry Cracked Hands

 

Today I want to talk about hand washing.


We are living in an age of excessive hand washing.  All of a sudden we are being encouraged to wash our hands for 20 or 30 seconds multiple times a day…  Also, many people use harsh cleaning products such as Lysol and Clorox to kill viruses on all surfaces.  For many of us, it can be an issue because our skin barrier can't really handle this much washing!  

Do you feel like you have paper cuts all over your hands?  There are two main reasons that your hands are quickly drying out.

The first one has to do with pH and the second one has to do with the ingredients that are in the soaps and cleaners that actually do the cleansing.
I'll start with pH. Your skin’s pH should be about 4.5 to 5.5.
The reason that it is slightly acidic is that the microbes living on the surface of the skin require a slightly acidic environment to thrive. They are responsible for helping to keep our skin’s immune system and barrier function intact.

Now, water itself is more alkaline.
Frequent contact with water (an alkaline pH) on slightly acidic skin is actually quite irritating in and of itself without the addition of any soaps or cleaners.  For some people, it can even cause really severe chapping or cracks.

Secondly, soap and non-soap foaming cleansers are made with surfactants which are detergents that separate the oils from the skin.
Soaps that are made with natural plant oils will have some sort of lipid protection even though they're cleansing.  I recommend using natural soap over surfactants for hand washing.
The best choice would be  Dr. Bronner's Pure Castile unscented soap (for babies).  You can dilute it (1:3 ratio) with distilled water or your favorite hydrosol in a soap dispenser.
Hydrosols have a lower pH than water and are better for your skin.

Best hydrosol options:
  • Lavender
  • Lemon balm
  • Calendula

On my web site here you can find a few options for natural bar soaps made by our partners Pacha soap company.

For moisturizing your hands, I recommend thicker creams and balms with plant-based oils and butters.  You can find them here.  All of these products are among our March Specials and 15% off!  Check out my March Specials below and enjoy Free Shipping for any size order the entire month of March with promo code MARCH2020 !

I'd like to extend peace and love during this time of global uncertainty and sudden changes to our daily lives.  We all know change can be difficult, particularly when it feels abrupt and imposed beyond our will.

However, we must remember that during this time, we are not alone and there is beauty to be found in what is our new normal!  We can continue to do the familiar in our routine and as we adjust and accept a new rhythm in life.

I have found solace in the pieces of familiarity in my daily routine: morning tea, prayer, bouncing on my mini-trampoline, near-infrared light therapy, yoga stretching, walking in the park, taking an infrared sauna and my skincare routine, of course.  

Continuing or adding acts of self-care to our daily lives will help normalize and even grow in unprecedented times!

 Love and blessings,

Viktoriya Hopperstad