What Does a Paraffin Wax Do for Your Hands?

By Hallie Engel

Both medical professionals and aestheticians use paraffin wax -- a soft wax derived from petroleum -- to care of hands both inside and out. Typically, the hands are coated in multiple layers of warm wax and covered in plastic gloves or bags to trap heat and intensify its healing and moisturizing properties.

Spa salon. Manicure. Paraffin hand bath.
credit: Alexandr Dubovitskiy/iStock/Getty Images
Paraffin wax may be used before or after a hand massage.

Benefits of Paraffin Wax

Thanks to its ability to seal in moisturize by forming a protective barrier around the skin, paraffin wax is a popular beauty treatment for hands and many times accompanies a professional manicure. For the best DIY result, apply lotion to your hands before dipping them in warm wax; this increases the absorption of moisturizing ingredients, relieving dry, cracked skin and conditioning cuticles. Arthritis suffers may find coating their hands in hot paraffin wax reduces pain and improves agility by relaxing muscles, improving circulation and loosening stiff joints.