If you’re thinking TMI, you may want to move on to another post. I’m writing this post because I figure if this can even help one person, it’s worth the time to put it out there. When I say sweaty palms, I really mean completely drenched. Like, dripping. As a teen, I would play video games with friends, hand off a controller to the next player, then hear, “What did you spill on the controller?”. Story. Of. My. Life. I would submit exams in blue books at school to my teacher or professor only to hear them say “What did you spill on your exam book?”. When I would tell them it was my sweaty hands they would respond with, “Oh, you were that nervous?”. Nope. I wasn’t. My hands have a mind of their own with no rhyme or reason to their sweatiness.
It wasn’t just my hands, my feet also had a puddling mind of their own. I danced throughout school and we typically wore lyrical sandals (we fondly called them Jesus sandals…). For those who have never been part of the dance world, this translates to a tiny piece of leather to cover the ball of your foot to allow you to turn effortlessly, but the rest of the “shoe” consisted of well, nothing-straps and that’s about it. Now, imagine having consistently drenched feet and doing leaps across a hardwood gym floor in these suckers. It ain’t pretty. I fell on my butt more times than I can count.
I know, I know… get to the point, right? Well, the point is I never found something that actually “worked”. I did find things to help me manage the awkward effects of my sweaty hands and feet. First of all, it has a name: hyperhydrosis (basically the scientific name for sweating too much). A lot of people with hyperhydrosis seem to sweat more in the underarm area, but in this case, my hands and feet are the culprits. I’ve had people all my life say “yeah, I get sweaty palms, too”. No, just no. Until your hands literally drip and you have to plan your outfit or shoe choice because you know you’ll either be standing in a puddle or will have sweat marks all over your clothing from your hands dripping, don’t tell me you can sympathize. I have only met a few people that can actually sympathize. My dad (thanks, dad… I know where I get it…), my sister-in-law, a foreign exchange student I met in high school, and I recently found out a friend’s sister has the same problem.
There is a surgery that can be done that severs sweat glands in the underarm area that will eliminate all sweating in the hands. Well, I’ve dealt with this problem all my life, so thousands of dollars of surgery not covered by insurance isn’t a solution for me. I have also been prescribed deodorants that “should” stop the sweating. You guys. Have you ever applied deodorant to the palms of your hand? No? Try it and see how that works out throughout the day for you. Not practical whatsoever. So, what has worked? Not much, but I have found a few products that help some. I have found a lotion as well as wipes that seem to work better than anything else I’ve tried.
DERMAdoctor MED e TATE Antiperspirant Wipes
These wipes are convenient and they work fairly well. They sometimes gave my hands a somewhat waxy feeling, but other than that they didn’t leave a greasy or oily feel like some other products do. They did slow the sweating, but when you wash your hands a few times the product loses its effects. Overall, these were expensive (around $2 per wipe), but they were great for situations where I really, REALLY wanted my hands to be a little dryer than they normally are. I came across these in a Sephora while in college. I was taking yoga classes (yes… engineers can do yoga, too…) and would just get continually frustrated falling on my face while going into downward dog. At the time these were $48 for a 24-pack, which is pricey, but I was willing to try anything. A wipe in a convenient package? Sold. I was finally able to actually free my mind and not continually fixate on which pose would bring me crashing to the floor next.
Carpe Antiperspirant Lotion
I haven’t used this lotion much, since I purchased it in dry winter months, but it has awesome reviews and is much more competitively priced at $24.95 for hand and foot lotion tubes. The tubes are small, but it’s still a great start for a $25 price point. The instructions say to use this product every night before bed and you will see results in around 4 weeks. Ain’t got time for that? That’s when the MED e TATE wipes might be handy.
Well, there you have it. Is it a great list of solutions? No, but I’ve tried everything to no avail. I’ve tried prescriptions, lotions, deodorants on my hands, nothing has worked. These two products at least give me some relief or improvement in a… sweaty… situation. If this helps at least one person who suffers from acute sweat-itis (put that in the Big Book of Boo Boos, Doc McStuffins), then sharing this was worth it.