Happy to shell out on the latest moisturisers, serums and masks for our complexion, we often forget that the skin on our hands is just as important, especially since they’re key to your sense of touch. Plus, it’s our hands that sneakily show the first tell-tale signs of ageing. Here’s where to start if you’re looking to up the ante on your hand and nail regime.
Keep ‘em clean: Removing dirt and bacteria from around and under the nails on a regular basis is essential for keeping infection at bay (and you germ-free).
Put some soap on an old toothbrush and use it to gently scrub both your nails and the surrounding skin. Invest in a low in alcohol, non-drying hand sanitizer as well to keep in your bag for regular bug-banishing.
We love Aesop Resurrection Rinse-Free Hand Wash (£7, cultbeauty.co.uk) for its pretty smell and all round skin-friendliness.
Pour your hands a drink: Did you know that the palms and backs of the hands have very little, to no oil glands? Without them, the skin cannot produce sebum and therefore hydrate itself, meaning that hand can dry up very easily.
Look for hand creams or balms containing nourishing ingredients like shea butter, almond and evening primrose oil and apply it every night before bed, and throughout the day too.
Try Weleda Evening Primorose Age Revitalising Hand Cream (£12.50, weleda.co.uk) or L’Occitane Shea Intensive Hand Balm (£22, uk.loccitane.com). [Psst! To see how you can win this product, as well as some other fab L’Occitane and Legology goodies, see our competition page]
Boost Youth: Just like your face serum, a hand serum tackles wrinkles, lacklustre, thinning skin and the appearance of age spots if used regularly. In which case, adding one to your daily hand hydration plan is highly recommended.
After all, what’s an extra couple of minutes onto your bedtime routine if it means happier, more youthful hands? We recommend Margaret Dabbs Intensive Anti-Ageing Hand Serum, £30, cultbeauty.co.uk.
THE HAND FACIAL
Considering how much we use our hands, it’s surprising how little attention we pay to their wellbeing. Once in a while, it pays to treat them to a little hand maintenance and by that, we mean a hand facial. Yup, it’s a thing and essential for keeping hands and nails healthy and bright.
1. After cleaning your nails, trim them down using a board file, not a metal one, to avoid splitting the nail.
2. Next, massage a hand scrub into damp hands – Crabtree and Evelyn Gardeners Hand Recovery Scrub (£8, crabtree-evelyn.co.uk) is created for over-worked, rough hands and leaves them feeling smooth and rejuvenated. Alternatively, you can exfoliate your hands at the same time as using Legology Exfo-Lite (£42) on your legs.
3. Apply a generous amount of rich but non-sticky hand cream like Liz Earle Orange Flower Hand Repair (£22.50, uk.lizearle.com). Adding heat to moisture helps ingredients to soak into the skin more effectively so put on a pair of gloves while you relax for 15 minutes to let the product penetrate. (If you don’t have an old pair, try The Body Shop Moisture Gloves, £7)
4. Once you’ve taken the gloves off, massage a nourishing oil into your cuticles and leave it to soak in. We like Nails Inc Vitamin E Cuticle Oil Pen (£15, nailsinc.com) for its ease of use and anti-oxidant properties.
Lift Off’s Hotspots for Hands
DryBy, London: Choose between an express, Shellac or our favourite, luxury manicure AKA ‘the works’ for hands (£60). The nail art options aren’t to be missed either.
Grace, Managing Editor
The Treatment Rooms, Brighton: It’s light, airy, central and does a mean mani for £39.
Philippa, Associate Editor
Champneys Day Spa, Guildford: Your one stop nail shop, for speedy polish jobs, quick gel applications / removals or a luxurious hand detox.