The essential step you need to take after using soap and hand sanitiser

Sarah Carty
Features & Style Editor

One of the most important things people can do to protect themselves against contracting coronavirus is to wash their hands and use hand sanitiser. 

However, while it might mean we’re getting rid of unwanted germs, the incessant use of soap and alcohol-based sanitisers can wreak havoc with our skin. 

Washing your hands and using hand sanitiser are two of the best ways you can protect yourself against contracting coronavirus. Photo: Getty Images

"Soap removes the natural oils from your skin," Matthew Zirwas, M.D., director of the Contact Dermatitis Center at the Ohio State University Medical Center told Shape magazine.

"If you're washing your hands frequently, you're removing more oil than your skin can produce, and that can eventually make it dry, rough, and cracked.”

This means that the more you wash your hands (which you should be doing) and the more you pump that hand sanitiser onto your skin, the more likely you are to have dry, red and even cracked and burning skin, which can be tough to treat. 

Once your skin gets dry and cracked it can leave you open to contracting infection and exacerbating conditions such as eczema or psoriasis. 

The best way to combat this is to use a moisturising hand cream once you’ve washed and dried your hands.  

Ideally, the hand cream should be as natural as you can find, fragrance-free and devoid of any glycolic acids.

Here’s some of our favourite ones below:

DermaVeen Extra Gentle Revive Hand Cream - $6.99

DermaVeen’s hand cream is not only fragrance-free, free from parabens, artificial dyes, alcohol and lanolin but the formula forms a glove-like protective veil around the skin, helping it to heal. It absorbs quickly into the skin and is infused with natural oatmeal to relieve and soothe any irritation.

DermaVeen Extra Gentle Revive Hand Cream.

Avène Cicalfate Hands Repairing Barrier Cream - $27.95

Avène’s hand cream is paraben and fragrance-free, which minimises the risk of a reaction. It also forms a protective layer on the skin with proteins, allowing new skin to thrive. It’s also rich in thermal water and includes copper sulphate and zinc sulphate to soothe skin and reduce the risk of a bacterial infection.

Avène Cicalfate Hands Repairing Barrier Cream.

QV Hand Cream - $6.17

QV’s hand cream is colour, fragrance, propylene glycol and lanolin-free, making it suitable for sensitive skin. The formula is non-greasy and allows skin to restore as it’s being nourished and moisturised.

QV Hand Cream.

MooGoo Skin Milk Udder Cream - $11.90

MooGoo’s Milk Udder Cream is packed fill of healthy ingredients such as Aloe Vera and Vitamin E and can be used all over the body. It’s free from parabens and phenoxyethanol and features natural oils such as almond and olive oil.

MooGoo Skin Milk Udder Cream.

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