Right Hand Itching? (Why Your Itchy Palms Could Be a Good Luck Charm)

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Last Updated on February 5, 2022 by Rebecca Lake

Right Hand Itching

Is your right hand itching more than usual? Curious about what itchy palms mean and whether they bring lottery luck?

An itchy right palm could be a sign of an allergic reaction or health condition. But an itchy right hand could also be a sign of good fortune if you believe in money superstitions.

A common old wives’ tale says that when your left hand itches or your right hand itches, it could mean that you’re about to receive money.

But is there any truth to the itchy palm superstition? And should you rush out to buy a lottery ticket if you get a case of constant right hand itching?

If you’ve got an itching sensation in either palm, here’s a closer look at what this old money superstition means.

Related post: Itching Left Palm: Is It Lottery Luck?

Itchy Palms Meaning

When talking about money superstitions, itchy palms are often connected to good luck or bad luck. An itching palm can mean money may be coming your way or money may be leaving you.

But if your palms itch that could also be a sign of a medical condition. According to the Mayo Clinic, some of the medical conditions associated with itching palms include:

  • Dry skin
  • Hand eczema (also known as dyshidrotic eczema or hand dermatitis)
  • Contact dermatitis, ringworm or neurodermatitis (all different types of eczema)
  • Diabetes
  • Nerve disorders
  • Allergic reaction to household cleaners, fabrics or pets
  • Psoriasis (common symptoms of psoriasis include itchy skin, red patches and burning)

The National Eczema Association lists additional common causes of itching palms in case you’re interested.

If you have any of these symptoms, you may have a skin condition. A doctor could tell you whether it’s mild or serious and complete a patch test to determine what medical reasons might be causing your itchy palms. You may need to take prescription medications or apply a thick cream to the affected area for a set period of time to treat it.

Excessive hand washing can also cause dry, itchy skin. If you’re washing your hands a lot in very hot water then investing in a high-quality moisturizer could help. And your doctor might suggest switching to lukewarm water for hand washing or using an ice pack on occasion to help ease symptoms.

Related post: How Much Is 6 Figures In Money?

What Does Right Hand Itching Mean?

woman holding a fan of cash in front of her face
Right Hand Itching: What Does It Mean?

An itching right hand can have different meanings, depending on where you’re from and the money beliefs that you grew up with.

In the United States, right-hand itching often means money is coming your way. This is what my grandma always taught me growing up in the South.

Your right hand is your receiving hand while your left hand is the hand that gives away money.

So just how much money could an itchy right hand bring?

An itching right hand could mean that a lot of money is on its way to your bank account. This could be an unexpected windfall, like a lottery win or an inheritance.

Or it could mean that your investments in the stock market are about to pay off or you’ll be getting a raise at work in the near future.

But it could just as easily mean you’re about to get $20 in free cash from Ibotta or make some quick cash by taking surveys with Survey Junkie.

These are some of the most common beliefs involving money when your right hand itches. And all of them are good things if you’re hoping for an inflow of money.

Is it a good sign if your right hand itches? (And does it mean lottery luck?)

pile of lottery tickets with one dollar bills
Itching Right Hand and Lottery Luck

One of the most common superstitions surrounding itchy palms is that it’s somehow tied to your odds of winning the lottery. So is there any truth to this idea and does an itchy right hand mean good news if you’re tempted to play the lottery?

There’s no scientific evidence that suggests a link between an itching right hand and choosing the winning lottery numbers. There are, however, quite a few examples of people who have followed an itchy palm to lottery luck.

  • A woman in Baltimore won $50,000 on a lottery ticket she purchased after three of her daughters told her their hands had been itching for consecutive days. Their family reported a long-standing superstitious belief in itchy palms being tied to money.
  • Another woman in Michigan won $2 million in the lottery after playing the Mega Millions. The woman said she’d started buying lottery tickets after her hand started itching. (Her winning lottery numbers were 20-31-39-46-49, in case you’re interested.)
  • A man from Mandurah in West Australia collected just under $1 million in lottery winnings. The night before he bought his winning ticket, he’d developed an itchy palm.
  • A North Carolina woman bought a lottery ticket on a whim after her palm started itching. Her hunch about itchy palms paid off as she won $100,000.
  • In Michigan, a man who knew the old tale about itchy palms ended up purchasing a Mega Millions ticket after his hand wouldn’t stop itching. He didn’t win the biggest jackpot but he did snag a $250,000 lottery prize.
  • In December 2021, a Kentucky woman used her itchy palms to cash in on lottery luck. She won $25,000 a year for life from her winning ticket.

Perhaps the most famous case of itching palms being linked to lottery luck is Mary Shammas.

In 2010, the 73-year-old was riding the bus home from the doctor’s office when her palm started to itch. Remembering the old wives’ tale about itchy palms and money, she decided to buy a lottery ticket using her go-to lucky numbers: 5, 14, 17, 19, 24 and 25 for the Mega Ball.

Her purchase paid off the next day when she checked her numbers against the winning lottery numbers and learned that she’d won a $64 million dollar jackpot.

What does a right hand itching mean in different cultures?

The old tale about itching hands and money isn’t limited to the United States. There are also different money superstitions concerning itchy palms in other cultures.

Russian superstitions, for example, hold that if your right palm is itching you’ll receive some money. A left palm itching means you’ll give money away. (And if your lips are itching, you’ll be kissing–but don’t let a black cat cross your path, since that’s bad luck.)

Is there a spiritual meaning when your right hand itches?

The spiritual meaning of itchy hands is open to interpretation, but it can be a sign of the kind of energy that’s gathering around you.

If you believe that a right hand itching means money is on the way, then that could be a sign that there’s some positive new internal energy at work.

On the other hand, if you believe an itching right hand means you’re going to lose money that could signal an unwanted energy buildup.

You can also make some biblical connections between itching hands and good fortune.

For I am the Lord your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you.” – (Isaiah 41:13 New International Version (NIV))

 “But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing.” – (Matthew 6:3 New International Version (NIV))

You could interpret these verses as saying that the right hand is favored or that your right hand is the one that receives while the left is the one that gives.

Related post: Old Money vs New Money: What’s the Difference?

What Does Left-Hand Itching Mean?

left hand holding cash
Left Hand Itching

If you believe the old tale that your right hand itching means money is coming to you, then an itching left hand logically suggests that you’re about to have an outflow of money.

This doesn’t have to be anything major, like losing all of your savings. It could just mean that an unexpected bill is about to land in your mailbox or you’ll have a small emergency expense that you’ll need to charge to your credit card.

Left-hand itches have also been linked to lottery luck, just like itching right hands. But again, the question of what hand itches and what it means can vary from one culture to another.

For example in India, the right hand is associated with luck and femininity. This makes sense since the goddess Lakshmi is the goddess of good fortune, wealth and luck.

So if you’re a female and your right hand itches then it means money is coming your way. But if you’re female and your left palm itches then you’re about to lose money, according to the Hindu religion.

Hindi beliefs also suggest that if you’re a male and your left hand itches you’re about to lose money. This backs up the idea that your right hand is your receiving hand the left is your losing hand.

Where Did the Itchy Palms Superstition Start?

The link between physical money and good fortune may date back to ancient times and the belief that certain metals could be used to ward off evil spirits. You might have learned this idea through the old nursery rhyme, “See a penny, pick it up. All day long you’ll have good luck.”

As for the link between a left hand itching or right hand itching and lottery luck, we may have the Saxons and Celts to thank for this.

A common belief held that rubbing silver on your skin could cure illnesses. As a result, people rubbed silver on itchy palms and over time, this evolved to mean that money was either coming your way or leaving you. (And an itching left hand has also been interpreted to mean that you’ll soon be wearing a wedding ring.)

The superstition about touching silver is connected to another superstition about touching wood.

The Celtic people believed that touching wood could guarantee good luck. So when people came down with a case of itchy palms, they would touch wood in order to satisfy the itch without driving their luck away.

In Britain, “touch wood” is still a popular idiom. But if you’re from the U.S., you might know it better as “knock on wood”.

Other Common Money Superstitions

There are lots of money superstitions floating around and the “right hand itching/left hand itching means money” belief is just one of them.

If you’re curious about some other common beliefs surrounding money, here are a few other superstitions you might find interesting:

  • Don’t put your purse on the floor, as it’s bad luck and could mean losing money.
  • A penny on the ground face-up means good luck but a penny tails-up means bad luck.
  • Putting a piece of lucky bamboo in your home can usher in wealth.
  • Sweeping the house after 6 p.m. means you’re sweeping away your luck. (And so does sweeping dirt out the front door.)
  • Finding a spider in your pocket can mean good luck and good fortune.
  • Brown grasshoppers are lucky (but green ones mean misfortune.)
  • Throwing coins in a fountain can bring money your way.
  • Having a bird poop on you is a sign of favor and can mean good luck.
  • The number 8 is a symbol of wealth and prosperity to come.
  • Storing coins or other items of value in the southeast corner of your home can bring wealth (according to feng shui principles).

Related post: How to Get Rich From Nothing

right hand itching pinterest image
Right Hand Itching

Final thoughts on what right hand itching means

The idea that itchy hands are connected to money is a commonly accepted belief for a lot of people. Whether you believe in it or not, it may be a good idea to buy a lottery ticket if you get a sudden case of right hand itching.

(Of course, it could mean you have a common condition that’s causing your skin to itch. In which case, you might want to see a doctor.)

The next time your right palm itches (or you get an itchy left palm) pay attention. If it’s itching for a long time, that could be a sign that money is soon to be on its way to you!

Looking for the best way to get money with little effort? Try these 60 legitimate free money hacks!

Before you go, be sure to check out my favorite Smart Money Tools for making and saving money.

Right Hand Itching Meaning

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About Rebecca Lake

Rebecca Lake is a Certified Educator in Personal Finance, freelance writer and homeschooling single mom of two. Since 2014, she's paid off nearly $100,000 in debt and grown her net worth to seven figures. Her work has appeared online at top personal finance websites, including Forbes Advisor, Bankrate, Investopedia, The Balance, CreditCards.com and U.S. News & World Report. Find out more.