Dry skin can affect any part of the body. However, the knees and elbows often receive harsh treatment when due to bending, leaning and kneeling. Dry skin on the knees and elbows is especially noticeable because the skin is thick and becomes dark and unsightly with a soiled appearance. Although this becomes a big problem when the temperature rises and arms and legs are bared, it isn't difficult to combat this annoying problem with a few basic steps.
Wash your elbows and knees regularly and give these areas a good scrubbing with a loofah, pumice or natural sponge. You can also use an exfoliating scrub.
Avoid hot baths and showers because hot water dries the skin. Wash your knees and elbows using warm water and gentle fragrance-free soaps, avoiding harsh detergents and antibacterial products.
Pat your knees and elbows gently with a soft towel. Don't rub.
Apply a thick moisturizing cream immediately after bathing, while your skin is still warm and supple. A product containing ingredients such as vitamin A, vitamin E, alpha hydroxy or aloe provides extra benefit for extremely dry areas.
Carry a tube of cream or lotion and apply it several times throughout the day. Apply a thick coat just before bed.
Wear sunscreen to protect your knees and elbows. UV rays dry the skin and cause damage beneath the epidermis.
Things You'll Need
Loofah, pumice or natural sponge
Many commercial exfoliating products are available or you can apply a homemade exfoliator made of white or brown sugar and a small amount of olive oil.
See a physician or dermatologist if your dry skin doesn't clear up within one to two weeks or if the area is cracked or painful. Extremely dry skin may be a sign of conditions such as eczema, psoriasis or dermatitis.