How to Soften Rough Knees

Soften rough knees at home by exfoliating and moisturizing.
Soften rough knees at home by exfoliating and moisturizing. (Image: Jupiterimages/ Images)

Rough knees have an ashy, flaky, dry, scaly or darkened appearance caused by a buildup of dead skin cells. Rough knees can cause discomfort and embarrassment, especially during summer months when shorts and dresses are preferred. People living in dry or cold climates are at higher risk for developing rough knees, since the lack of humidity and cold robs the skin of moisture. Follow simple at-home treatments to transform dry, rough knees to soft, smooth skin.

Things You'll Need

  • Skin cleanser
  • Alpha Keri oil
  • Pumice stone or exfoliating body scrub
  • Washcloth
  • Towel
  • Virgin coconut oil
  • Oil-based moisturizing cream

Use lukewarm water when showering since hot water strips skin of its moisture and natural oils. If you must use hot water, limit the length of your shower to 15 minutes, advises the American Osteopathic College of Dermatology website.

Avoid using strong fragrance soaps containing harsh chemicals that cause dry skin. The American Osteopathic College of Dermatology recommends using skin cleansers instead of soaps.

Use a humidifier if you live in a dry climate or use central heating in your home. A humidifier will help the skin on your knees retain moisture.

Draw a lukewarm bath and add a few drops of Alpha Keri oil, which is used to soften dry skin. After soaking for 15 minutes, use a pumice stone or an exfoliating body scrub and washcloth to scrub your knees to remove the buildup of dead skin cells.

Pat dry your knees after bathing, leaving the skin damp. Apply a few drops of virgin coconut oil to each knee and rub in. Safe to use directly on the skin, virgin coconut oil has moisturizing properties that benefit dry skin, according to the Eastern University website.

Apply a thick oil-based moisturizing cream that contains ingredients such as grapeseed oil and antioxidants to each knee, recommends the Mayo Clinic website. You can also use petroleum creams such as Vaseline.

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