Flaky nails and rough hands - Scleroderma & Ray...

Scleroderma & Raynaud's UK (SRUK)

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Flaky nails and rough hands

Carol-C profile image
16 Replies

Hi - I have been diagnosed with Raynaud's and am seeing a Rheumatologist tomorrow as the Nifedipine tablets aren't having the desired effect. My hands are really rough, with flaky skin and my fingernails are also brittle and flaky and just will not grow; they split all the time. Is this connected to the Raynaud's?

16 Replies
uknlv profile image

I have terribly dry hands since I was diagnosed with Raynaud's and my cuticles crack and bleed frequently, this I was told was because of the damage done in the cuticle area due to poor blood flow caused by the Raynauds, I do not have any trouble with my actual nails though. They grow to quickly as I have to constantly keep them shortened.

I use some good lotions and try to keep it on whenever I think about it, and I use a very oily lotion at night and wear cotton gloves, which helps a lot and keeps the mess down to a minimum!

LynnCox profile image

In addition to Raynaud's I have had underactive thyroid for a few years and find my hands can be very dry at time and although my nails grow they always end up splitting quite low down the nail bed, which is very painful. I find it best to use a good hand lotion to keep my hands moisturised and file my nails before they split.

Emma2 profile image

My nails are ok but my cuticles are a mess - you can see the damage the raynauds has caused to them. My hands are quite dry anyway so I just try to make sure that I keep them well moisturised.

Yorky profile image

I don't have problems with my nails, but my hands are very dry,especially the cuticles and they often split, espescially on the index fingers. I always use Neutragena hand cream - have tried many others, but Neutragena is the best. I put it on quite liberally at night and then put on cotton gloves, this does help. Have you tried using wax baths for the hands?

shazzym profile image
shazzym in reply to Yorky

My hands are very dry all the time. I'll try your suggestion of putting cream on at night with gloves on. I've tried so many handcreams too!

Sounds like my hands, too! I have a wax bath, which helps the skin (and the joints). The best cream I've found is Hemp cream (you only need a tiny bit of it for your hands, and it doesn't sting). Can't go a day without creamy hands!

Carol-C profile image
Carol-C in reply to

Hi Layla - what is a wax bath? And where do I get Hemp cream from? Thanks for the advice, I'll definitely give it a try.

Hi Carol

I buy the hemp cream from the body shop - I find that the body butter is also better than the creams that the doctors prescribe (much thicker, but not greasy). I bought the wax bath from argos. Just had a look - it's on offer. Catalogue number 443/5736. It comes with the wax.

Yorky profile image
Yorky in reply to

Thanks for the info about the wax bath at Argos, I have just ordered one. Its probably much safer than what I do at the moment - heating the wax up in a pyrex dish in the microwave. What a brillant site this is.

Anteater profile image

Wax is excellent for our hands and helps improve the cuticle area as well. I find that Vaseline intensive handcreams are the best for me - its all trial and error.

Just read my last response, and felt the need to add a bit more about the wax bath.

You leave the wax to melt in the wax bath for a couple of hours. When it comes to using it, you cover your hands in cream first. Then you cover your hands in layers of wax, by dipping it in the wax bath and then letting each layer dry for about a minute. When you've had enough (about 10 minutes), you just peel the wax off (which is quite soft) and put it back into the bath. The wax is reusable. The cream soaks in better and your hands feel really warm. It also provides some relief from raynauds and arthritis.

There are quite a few reviews on the argos site alone.

zenabb profile image

I find that using a strong nail varnish keeps my brittle nails in order. I use forever strong Maybeline. It has calcium, iron and silica according to the manufacturer.

Yorky profile image

I have just been to chiropody at the hospital. I mentioned this web site and said that one of the questions had been about dry skin. The chiropodist said that she always recomends the Body Shops Hemp Cream! I shall give it a try

Steph profile image


I use a body lotion called mangovera on my hands its the best thing I've tried even better than the hemp and cheaper. They also do a lavender one. However It does contain triple lanolin (which is why its so good) that some people may be alergic to. You can buy it online but I get it from a local nail salon to avoid postage costs.

JaneP profile image

I've been using Hemp cream from the body shop for a few years now and find it very good. I also find "Very Hardworkers Handcreme" from Apicare very good.

Keke profile image

I have dry cuticles too! One of them seems to have a permanent split :( I swear, I think it's been there for a couple years now... it doesn't bleed but it wont grow back together either. I live by either one of two things... burts bees lemon butter cuticle cream or sally hansen green tea & soy cuticle oil. Lately I've been using the oil. Either way, they are both cheap and small - so you can always take them with you. Pathetic as it seems, I have a mini bag that I keep in my purse just for my cuticles, lol. Cuticle clippers, an emery board (yes, I'm guilty of filing the dry skin), cuticle oil, a small tube of hand lotion, and chapstick... though the last one isn't really for my cuticles. I simply freak out if I forget the darn bag at home, lol.

I do like the oil though, mostly for the simple fact that it is so easy to apply and convenient to carry. I've been trying several products for years and portability has become my number one concern... staying power is unimportant as all products come off once you wash your hands :(. (maybe that's just me though, lol, I swear I have to pee every five minutes)

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