Easy tips to keep your hands in good shape
As your hands can age faster than your face, Katie Wright asks the pros to share a few skincare tips
Ask any skincare enthusiast, and they'll likely rattle off a multi-step daily routine used to keep their complexion looking radiant (plus a few extra products thrown in on a weekly basis).
Many of us spend a lot of time - and money - on pampering our faces each day, but when it comes to hands, we're often nowhere near as diligent.
That's why so many people complain that their hands age faster than their faces - but it doesn't have to be this way.
From simple skincare tweaks to transforming treatments, there are plenty of ways to ensure your hands are soft, smooth and young-looking...
1. Use a mild soap
"It's beneficial to use milder soaps on the skin, as they don't strip the natural oils away," says Haeckels founder Dom Bridges.
Whether liquid or bar, look for hand soaps made with a high percentage of natural ingredients, Bridges recommends: "Some people also find they offer relief and are better for skin conditions, such as eczema and psoriasis."
- Haeckels Bladderwrack + Fennel hand cleanser, £34
- Yope vanilla & cinnamon natural liquid soap, £7.99, Nature's Health Box
2. Exfoliate regularly
Exfoliation can work wonders for your hands.
"Exfoliate your hands at least once a week to keep the skin glowing and radiant, just like you would the rest of your body," says Caroline Matthews, learning and development trainer at L'Occitane.
"Exfoliating will also help your moisturiser to absorb better into the skin."
- Hotel Chocolat avocado & sour orange hand scrub, £9.95 (available in September)
- Lush salted coconut hand scrub, £9
3. Moisturise whenever you wash
"Keep a hand cream next to your hand soap, to help you get in the habit of moisturising after washing your hands," Matthews recommends.
"Regular washing is key for hygiene, but one of the biggest culprits for dry, uncomfortable skin - so keep hands hydrated and nourished after each wash."
"Another great tip is to make the most of your leftover skincare products, whether it's a face mask, face oil, eye cream, moisturiser or body cream," says Liz Earle facialist and lifestyle ambassador Sarah Carr. "Apply any excess to the back of your hands and around your nails to reap the benefits.
"When I'm cooking, I also apply a little oil olive or coconut oil to hands and nails," she adds. "This is a tip my grandma taught me years ago, to keep hands and nails looking youthful!"
- Liz Earle superskin hand serum, £23.50
4. Try a DIY hand mask
Hands feeling in need of some extra TLC?
"Apply a generous layer of intensive hand cream (ideally with high amounts of shea butter in) all over your hands and leave for five to 10 minutes, as a mask for extra nourishment," Matthews says. "Tissue off the excess at the end and massage the rest in."
Or, why not pop on some ready-made hand masks and let the nourishing ingredients sink in? It's a great excuse to sit back and relax, because there's not much you can do with a pair of slippery gloves on, is there?
- L'Occitane shea intensive hand balm, £23
- Starskin VIP The Gold hand mask, £11.50, Look Fantastic
5. Slather on SPF
Sunscreen is an absolute must for anyone concerned with anti-ageing, but most people neglect to protect their hands.
"Don't forget the back of your hands when applying sun protection and reapply after washing your hands," Matthews says."This can easily be missed, and can be one of the first places to show sun damage and ageing."
- Ultrasun anti-pigmentation hand cream SPF 30, £18, Marks & Spencer
- Neutrogena Norwegian Formula anti-ageing hand cream SPF 25, £4.79, Boots
6. Protect your paws
"Try to wear gloves when gardening or washing up, to prevent drying out the skin as much as possible," Matthews says. They may not look very cool, but a pair of Marigolds will save you from prune-like fingers and flaky skin.
7. Consider an aesthetic treatment
"Patients are increasingly asking about treatments for their hands," says Dr Granite, consultant dermatologist at Mallucci London.
"This is likely due to the fact we are so much more aware and invested in facial aesthetics now, and want other exposed areas - such as the neck and hands - to match."
Treatments include laser to help with brown spots and crepey skin, or dermal fillers to plump hands that have lost volume.
"Juvederm Volite is another option for the hands," Dr Granite explains. "This is a hyaluronic acid skin booster, which is injected more superficially than traditional fillers, to hydrate and plump hand skin."
Treatment time is up to 30 minutes, with prices starting from around £300. Visit the Juvederm website to find a clinic.