Sweaty hands plague many people, either during extreme stress or on a daily basis. In severe cases, you may want to consider surgery, Botox injections or home kits which actually use electric currents to address the problem. But for low-cost home remedies for sweaty hands, look to your kitchen cupboard and garden for products that shrink your palms’ pores and reduce sweating, or that have absorbent properties. Check with your health care practitioner first to rule out any serious problem which may be causing your sweaty hands.
The tannins in tea bags may have enough astringency to stop your palms from sweating, according to The People’s Pharmacy. Astringent products shrink pores and reduce sweating. In a large, heat-proof basin, make a large batch of regular black tea with five tea bags and 1 quart of water. Remove the tea bags after steeping them for five minutes. Soak your hands in the cooled liquid for up to half hour each night. For more portable treatment, simply hold a damp, brewed tea bag in each hand at least once a day.
Use roll-on antiperspirant on your hands as well as under your arms. Use a solid product, rather than a spray-on type, and make sure the label specifies that it dries clear. In addition, the label should indicate that the product is an antiperspirant, which prevents sweating, rather than simply a deodorant, which only controls odor. The list of ingredients on the roll-on product should include aluminum chlorohydrate.
Rubbing Alcohol or Witch Hazel
Like tea, rubbing alcohol is an astringent liquid. Before going somewhere where sweaty hands are an issue, wipe your palms with a cotton ball or clean gauze which you’ve soaked in rubbing alcohol. Use witch hazel, a natural extract from the astringent witch hazel tree, in the same manner; look for small plastic jars of witch hazel pads for the added benefit of portability. Avoid using either as daily therapy, because it may over dry hands.
Cold water itself is a natural astringent, although its effects may wear off sooner than other treatments. According to “Symptoms: Their Causes and Cures” from Prevention Health Books, a 30-minute hand soak in cold water may prevent palm sweat for up to three hours.
Talcum powder, corn starch, baking soda and other absorbent powdered materials may be useful in absorbing light sweat. If you regularly generate a lot of hand sweat, however, avoid this treatment or the material will just cake heavily and cause further skin irritation and unsightliness. Herbalist Jeanne Rose recommends using powdered herbs that have astringent or deodorizing properties, either alone or mixed with powder, baking soda or borax. Among the dried, powdered herbs she suggests are sage, lemon and orange peels, lavender, willow oak bark, rose petals and frankincense.
Double the astringent properties of rosewater and vinegar by combining the two for natural antiperspirant protection, suggests Rose. Purchase rose water -- a product distilled from rose petals -- at a health food store or ethnic market. Mix it with equal amounts of white vinegar and swab on your palms each morning and evening. If you wish to avoid extra expense, infuse rose petals from your garden in white vinegar, strain and bottle.
- Herbal Body Book; Jeanne Rose
- The People's Pharmacy: Tea for Sweaty Palms and Soles
- Symptoms: Their Causes & Cures: How to Understand and Treat 265 Health Concerns; Prevention Magazine Editors
- The Female Body: An Owner's Manual; Peggy Morgan and Caroline Saucer
With a focus on food, nutrition, cocktails and the latest dining trends, Melissa J. has been a freelance writer for more than 15 years. Her specialties include articles for such publications as SF Chronicle and National Geographic Green Living, as well as blog posts for the hospitality industry. Her previous positions include newspaper staff reporter and communications specialist for a nonprofit agency.