Pros: Inexpensive, oil-free and does not leave hands with a greasy feel. Very effective.
Cons: Has to be reapplied more frequently than most hand creams/lotions.
In the winter of 2003, I began to notice dry, scaly patches appearing on my hands. The patches occasionally itched, and never seemed to heal. I tried several different hand lotions/creams, including Lubriderm, which my wife recommended, but nothing seemed to help. Desperate, I made an appointment with a dermatologist, who diagnosed my condition as eczema, and prescribed Ultravate (halobetasol proprionate) Ointment, 0.05%. I tried using the Ultravate, which is a clear ointment in a tube. The Ultravate felt greasy, and never seemed to absorb into the skin, Not only did I not like the feel of it, it rubbed off easily onto clothing, etc., and the multitude of product warnings on the accompanying product information sheet worried me. Although it was somewhat effective, it wasn't something I could use for everyday protection.
So, I decided to try something else. I could remember Paul Harvey in the 80's advertising Neutrogena Norwegian Formula Hand Cream. I found it on the shelf at Wal-Mart, but was dismayed by the rather high cost, so I studied the list of ingredients (water and glycerin are the two primary ingredients) and decided to look for something similar. Then, I came across something I remember my grandmother having in her medicine cabinet - Corn Huskers Lotion. Noticing that it contained the same primary ingredients as the Neutrogena (and was half the price), I decided to give it a try.
Corn Huskers Lotion (developed originally for the dry hands of Iowa corn huskers) is an almost-clear lotion in a clear plastic bottle with a simple yellow label, stating that it is oil-free and "heavy-duty hand treatment." When applied, it absorbs into the skin very quickly, and indeed does not feel the least bit oily. After it is absorbed, your hands have a slightly tacky feel, but otherwise the lotion is completely absorbed. Other hand creams and lotions invariably leave the hands with a slightly greasy or oily feel, making it hard to grasp objects firmly (the steering wheel of my car, for example). Corn Huskers Lotion does not do this.
After using Corn Huskers Lotion several times a day for the first week, my wife remarked that my hands almost were back to normal. I won't say that Corn Huskers Lotion cures eczema, because it doesn't, but it definitely minimizes the effects. It also keeps the skin of my hands moist, and makes them look and feel years younger. I've used it ever since, keeping a bottle on my desk at work also (my job requires me to use a PC keyboard a lot, which is hard on the hands also).
Keep in mind that different things work for different people. My wife tried the Corn Huskers Lotion herself, and said that it did not work as well on her hands as it did on mine. It's possible that it all depends on skin type, as well as what one is used to with a hand cream or lotion. However, my bottle at work seems to get borrowed a lot by my co-workers!
Ingredients: Water, Glycerin, SD Alcohol 40, Sodium Calcium Alginate, Oleyl Sarcosine, Methylparaben, Guar Gum, Triethanolamine, Calcium Sulfate, Fragrance, Calcium Chloride, Fumaric Acid, and Boric Acid.