How to stop picking at your skin

Disclaimer: these tips did work for me, but that doesn’t mean they will work for you. (I hope they do though). This is kinda my story about how I stopped picking at my skin.

I know this is something many people struggle with. I used to struggle with it too. At some point I used to pick on my nails all the time, or tearing of skin from the fingers. At some point it got so bad that my fingers would just start bleeding with every little movement.
But of course this had to stop, because it’s very unhealthy, and if anybody has skin like I did back then, they are prone to infections.
I tried polishing my nails with some bitter nail polish so I could stop biting them off when I was way younger. Don’t do that! It didn’t work for me. Whenever I wanted to eat something with my hands, it would taste like the nail polish. I couldn’t eat chips, popcorn, sandwiches or even pizza. I couldn’t eat ANYTHING that is supposed to be eaten with hands. When I was using that nail polish, I would starve myself for days, since everything tasted awful. I had stopped picking at my skin at the time, but I couldn’t eat! So it wasn’t an effective method. Plus, I would pick on my toes - literally - since I was basically addicted to tearing of skin! So that was an unsuccessful method. At some point I tried wearing gloves, but the gloves were really uncomfortable, so I couldn’t write down schoolwork and do everyday stuff with them. Plus, at some point of the day I would need to put of the gloves, obviously. Then I would start picking at my skin again. So that was an unsuccessful method too.
My mom was really worried, so she bought me a bunch of hand cream tubes, hand oils, and stuff like that. At that point, I was worried too, but not too much. Of course my hands were better than they were before, but I still was picking at my skin. What I did was apply hand cream 3-4 times a day, and I even got a manicure and pedicure. My nails hurt then, but it was fine, because after a couple of weeks after I tried not to pick on them, they were WAY better. I used olive oil to massage my fingers and toes. It promotes nail growth and faster healing. Here in Greece olive oil is super common to find, and it is extremely cheap. However in other countries it is not that easy to find olive oil. Coconut oil is a good alternative though! I believe it is easier to find.
Of course I still pick at my skin at times, but I try not to, especially with the coronavirus outbreak.
Now my skin looks way healthier and better! By the way, here is another tip; ask one of your roommates/family members to tell you to stop once they find you picking at your skin. It really helped me! And if you live alone, putting your hands in your pockets helps too!

I hope these tips work for you :black_heart:


I’ve never picked at my fingers but I do pick dry skin off my lips and also chew off bits in my mouth (lol, this sounds gross). I also can’t stop myself from picking at mosquito bites and tear off eschar/scab (ehm coagulated blood lol).

Hm, I don’t know how to stop it more than to stop myself from doing it. Maybe I could apply some of your tips :thinking:

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Thank you for the tips. I started picking my skin because of the stress at home now I sometimes can’t even walk. however I just can’t stop. My mom once found out about this and just screamed that she would put me in therapy or something calling me insane and stuff. I talked her out of this however her screaming like that to me made it only worse. I will try to follow the tips you put here.

Those things I do aswell…

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We should stop!

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I’m autistic and picking at my pimples is a stim…I don’t think I can stop.

I do alright for a while with not picking at my skin, but once I start picking at the skin of my fingers again, they end up bleeding and I have to grab bandaids. Whenever my fingers start to get bad with the skin peeling, I try to keep my hands busy and I use bandaids to force me not to peel the skin more.

Yeah I need this lol

Added #tips tag!

I do pick loose skin on my hand palm but not to the extent to cause it to bleed.
I do it occasionally if I see the need to.

I would never tell somebody in my family to tell me to stop, because they would yell at me and it’s embarrassing and ineffective.

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I found a thing from the NHS about it

@Health do any of you have more tips?
Or do any of you also struggle with picking at your skin?

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Uh… sorry, can’t help. I don’t.

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