What Are the Best Remedies for Peeling Feet and Hands?

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  • Written By: A.M. Boyle
  • Edited By: PJP Schroeder
  • Last Modified Date: 17 November 2019
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Peeling feet and hands can be embarrassing, uncomfortable, and even painful. Over-the-counter creams and lotions might help relieve the condition, but there are other remedies available that use common household items, like olive oil, honey, and apple cider vinegar. Fresh mint juice, although less common, can also be used as an effective treatment. Dietary supplements might also help prevent and relieve peeling skin.

In most cases, skin peels on the feet and hands because the skin is especially dry. Lotions and creams sold over the counter designed to fight dry skin can often help relieve this problem. While some individuals might find these lotions effective when used as directed, those that contain perfumes or dyes should be avoided. Some additives can irritate a person’s skin, making the condition even worse.

Individuals suffering from peeling feet and hands might find relief by massaging the skin with pure olive oil. A person should rub a generous amount of the oil onto the affected area once or twice a day, allowing it to soak into the skin. Coconut oil can also be used, although some individuals might not find it to be as effective.


Honey can also be used as a paste to relieve peeling skin. An individual should apply a generous coat of honey to the troublesome areas, allowing it to remain on the skin for at least 30 minutes. Cool or lukewarm water should be used to wash it off because hot water can actually damage a person’s skin, making the peeling condition worse.

Mixing together equal parts of apple cider vinegar and water creates a soak that can soothe and heal a person’s peeling feet and hands. The soak can be used twice a day for up to 30 minutes. The vinegar also kills off certain microorganisms that cause the skin to peel. Similarly, a person might find relief by soaking the affected areas in fresh mint juice mixed in equal parts with cool water. The mint juice treatment is particularly effective if an individual’s condition is caused by exposure to extreme weather.

Lack of certain nutrients, such as vitamin A, vitamin B, iodine, or iron, can cause peeling skin, so taking dietary supplements can also help. An individual should also be sure to drink plenty of water to keep his or her skin properly hydrated. If an individual’s condition does not improve over time, or gets worse, he or she should seek the advice of a dermatologist or other medical professional.


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Post 3

My father used to get really bad peeling skin on his hands and it embarrassed him a lot. I think it was mostly in the winter, but I don't know what caused it.

He found Vaseline to be the best remedy and would just slather it on to them every night. Might be cheaper to just try plain petroleum jelly though.

Post 2

@croydon - That's easy to say, but not always easy to figure out. I had a friend who never did figure out why her skin was always peeling on her hands. She changed everything around her to try and stop it, including detergents and soaps and the material in her clothes and was tested for every kind of allergy. Nothing made a difference.

So, in the end she just decided to accept the condition and work on managing it. She has worked out a good routine which includes rubbing oil into her hands and says she hardly thinks about it now.

If she forgets the routine they start to look ragged and get itchy again.

Post 1

I really think the best thing you can do is figure out what is causing the problem in the first place and then eliminate that condition from your life.

My mother used to get terribly cracked feet and couldn't work out what was causing it for ages. It would start in the spring and not stop until the colder months arrived.

Finally she realized it was wearing cork shoes that was drying out her feet. She would get terrible peeling skin and cracks that really hurt on her feet and it was basically because the cork shoes she found so comfortable in the summer were sucking all the moisture out of her skin. She stopped wearing them and the cracks stopped as well.

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