I'm a pianist and sometimes in the winter my hands get so dry and start cracking that it hurts to play (or do anything, really). I have tried so many things... coconut oil, olive oil, vit e from a capsule, aloe, and silver... plus many combinations of them. I will not use commercial products as my allergist does not recommend them - most contain hidden alcohol and other additives. Also, petroleum products are out. The best thing that I have found, however, (and don't laugh, lol!) is spectrum organic shortening. Use it at night or even during the day if it gets really bad. I read about it somewhere in my researching and decided to give it a try. It does not irritate my skin. If I have a cut/crack on my hands from dryness I will put the shortening on and put a band aid over it before bed.... by the next morning... voila... soooo much better!