Why Does the Skin On My Fingers and Toes Become Wrinkled After Prolonged Immersion In Water?

The tips of fingers and toes are covered by a tough, thick layer of skin which, when soaked for a prolonged period, absorbs water and expands.

However, there is no room for this expansion on fingers and toes, so the skin buckles.

Your whole body does not become crinkled as the skin has a layer of waterproof keratin on the surface, preventing both water loss and uptake.

On the hands and feet, especially at the toes and fingers, this layer of keratin is continually worn away by friction.

Water can then penetrate these cells by osmosis and cause them to become turgid.

If you have eczema, having your skin soaked in water can sometimes make things worse.

The best advice is to moisturize frequently and avoid exposing your skin to water for long periods.