During the winter months, my poor hands really suffer from the cold and wind, going from outside temperatures into central-heated rooms and the net result is painfully dry hands that can get really sore. For the last year or so I’ve been on the quest to battle against dry skin and here are my top 5 ways to keep your hands jazzy:
#1. Don’t regularly use an antibacterial hand-wash: since having kids, I seemed to immediately switch to anti-bac hand-wash throughout the house, paranoid as I was about germs since nappy changing and bottom wiping was high on the list of daily activities. During a hand-treatment at Jo Malone, the therapist told me that using an anti-bacterial hand-wash really strips your hands, drying them out faster and she advised I switch back to a normal hand-wash. Honestly it has made a HUGE difference! I seem to wash my hands so many times a day I lose count, but since switching away from anti-bacterial, my hands don’t dry out as fast. I love Jo Malone’s Wood Sage & Sea Salt Body & Hand Wash. Another tip – always make sure you dry your hands properly after washing them, if you don’t the water itself can dry out your hands.
#2. Use body-scrub on your hands once a week: it maybe seems slightly counter-intuitative to scrub your hands if they’re already feeling dry, but actually using a body-scrub once a week or so to slough away the dead skin and exfoliate your way to softer smoother hands is actually a brilliant way of taking care of them especially in winter. One of my favourites is Kiehl’s Gently Exfoliating Body Scrub “Lavender” with Aloe Vera and Camomile. Massage all over your hands for about a minute then rinse off for beautiful soft skin.
#3. Find the right hand cream for you and use it! in my quest to fight against dry hands I have tried more hand creams than I’ve had hot dinners. Almost. Some are too greasy, some are too claggy, some are too thin and evaporate almost as soon as you put them on. I think it’s all a matter of personal taste and trial and error until you find the one that’s right for you and your skin. Personally, at the budget end of the price scale, I find Neutrogena’s Norwegian Formula range hard to beat, I’m currently using the unscented hand scream on my hands before I go to bed – because I find the texture of it suits me better to use for overnight rather than in the day. For a day-time hand cream, L’Occitane en Provence’s Shea Butter Hand Cream is often my go-to and it really helps nourish my hands without making them to slippery to function!#4. Treat yourself to a nourishing hand treatment once in a while (especially during winter): our hands go through so much, treat yours to a little TLC and it needn’t cost the earth, in fact there are a number of stores that offer hand treatments complimentary! At Jo Malone you can book yourself in for a free 20 minute hand and arm massage using your favourite scent (I’ve done it at the Richmond branch and it was fab); Kiehl’s also offers similar – visit in-store to find out more; in my local Kiehl’s store I’ve enjoyed a complimentary facial as well as a hand-treatment (where I discovered the fantastic Lavender body scrub). Molton Brown stores also offer free hand and arm massages in store – go to their website to find out your nearest then you can call to book a slot.
#5. Wear gloves! I am the worst for this but I’m trying to get better. When you’re out and about during the winter months, always wear gloves. I know when I’m religious about wearing my gloves – particularly when I wear my UGG sheepskin lined suede numbers – my hands are so much better at surviving the cold weather. A few days of not wearing them and I’m back to square one. So remember, as you leave the house… gloves, gloves, gloves!