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Dry, itchy skin? Nivea Creme kept my skin supple through a decade of Chicago winters

This $10 container lasts me the entire season.

It's that time of year when our thirsty skin is screaming for not just a good moisturizer, but the best moisturizer. I know a little something about dry, itchy skin. I grew up in Colorado where there is next to no moisture in the air — cracked heels and scaly hands were my skin's default state. It wasn't until my first winter in Chicago that I learned about the power of Nivea Creme. Now I never use any other moisturizer on my hands and body.

With glycerin petroleum jelly and natural waxes, this cream creates a barrier between your skin and the moisture-sucking winter air. 

$11 at Amazon

Nivea Creme is made with glycerin and petroleum jelly and different waxes all blended together to make a very thick cream —not lotion. If you don't know the difference between a lotion and a cream, it's a pretty big deal if you have dry skin. Lotion is made with water which soaks into your skin. Lotion is great for when the weather is warm and humid. Cream is oil-based and designed to prevent moisture loss. Cream is best for winter when the air is already dry and heat from our furnaces compounds the problem. Nivea is ideal for that kind of situation when every part of your body is begging for a Stanley Cup-sized glass of water.

With perpetually dry skin, I've tried just about every lotion out there, but once I tried Nivea Creme, that long and torturous hunt for relief ended. Because of all the wax and oil used to make this cream (don't worry; it's not greasy), it works really well when you apply it after you shower and dry off. You want your skin to be mostly dry, but still kind of puffy from the warm water. When you rub it into your skin, it creates a barrier that locks that moisture from the shower into your skin for the entire day. That means your legs won't itch under your pants!

It's great for your hands, too. If you work in a kitchen or in a place where you wash your hands a lot, you won't have to reapply Nivea after every scrubbing. When I cook a lot, I only need to put more on after every third washing. Oh — and a little goes a long way. This tin lasts me all winter!

Say goodbye to dry and itchy skin. (Amazon)
Say goodbye to dry and itchy skin. (Amazon)

12,000 five-star reviewers get behind its power to prevent scaly skin, too.

"Nothing beats Nivea for dealing with dry, chapped hands and skin," a happy shopper shared. "The men appreciate it after a day ice fishing, and I appreciate it after washing dishes or cleaning house. It moisturizes dry arms and legs and keeps them that way for hours."

"This product was one of the best things I could do for myself," gushed a rave reviewer. "I've suffered from eczema for about 12-15 years now and this is literally the first product I've used that has been transforming my skin back to its normal state ... [it's] so moisturizing that I've not been itching as much. I love it and now cannot live without it."

"For winter it is perfect," shared another five-star fan. "I live in a higher altitude and I just can not say enough about how well this moisturizer works for this environment. I also have skin sensitivities and Nivea absolutely works the best for my dry and sensitive skin type. Love the scent and couldn’t be happier with this purchase. The price is GREAT too."

Great for chapped hands, this cream lasts for hours and several washes!

$11 at Amazon

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The reviews quoted above reflect the most recent versions at the time of publication.