People notice your hands more than you think. They are the way you connect with loved ones through touch. They are also the workhorses of the body. This means they get rough treatment. In return they really do need and deserve some serious care. You might also want beautiful hands to show off your super manicure or eye-catching nail art. Treat yourself to a regular overnight treatment for beautiful hands you deserve.
1. Wash Hands Thoroughly with Warm Water
Most beauty experts advising you on how to get beautiful hands will warn you to stay away from warm or hot water because it robs the skin of moisture. However, you want any dead skin to become loose and easily removable. Wash your hands in warm water or better yet, choose to begin your hand care routine after you you’re your evening shower or bath, when your hands will be moist anyway.
2. Exfoliate Your Hands
Dead skin makes hands appear tired and dry. Now that the dead skin is softened by the warm water, it’s time to remove it by using an exfoliant. While there are many brands of exfoliant on the market, homemade exfoliants can be made quickly and inexpensively from ingredients you probably have around the house. Sugar with olive oil, ground oatmeal with milk, or baking soda with water work great as exfoliants. Scrub your hands thoroughly so that the dead skin is sloughed off and newer skin emerges.
3. Apply Moisturizer
Simple olive oil can serve as a moisturizer, and some women swear by lard, an ingredient used by women or centuries. However, most modern women use moisturizing lotions. The most effective are the creams made especially for hands. These creams are typically thicker the moisturizers used on the rest of your body, and often have additional nutrients. Put a dab about the size of a quarter onto your palm, and massage it into your hands, paying special attention to the palms and the areas around the cuticles. Your hands might feel a little greasy but the moisturizer will soak in.
4. Put on Gloves
Gloves will help trap moisture inside and prevent the moisturizer you applied from rubbing off onto bedding or clothes. Almost any kind of glove or mitten will work, but a nice lightweight cotton glove will be the most comfortable. In a pinch you could also use socks. There are also special spa gloves you can buy that are lined with a permanent gel, made especially for moisturizing hands. Go to bed with the gloves on, leaving them on for at least 6 hours. You could also treat your hands during the day, but it’s more difficult because of the number of times our hands are necessary for everyday chores.
5. Reapply Moisturizer
When you get up from your slumber, remove the gloves and apply a lightweight moisturizer that you can use throughout the day. The newly exfoliated skin will need the protection of additional moisturizer until your next overnight treatment, so use moisturizer liberally throughout the day to keep your hands soft and fresh looking. Pay particular attention to the knuckles and areas where your hand folds, and don’t forget the wrists.
6. Treat Your Nails
Your skin isn’t the only thing that benefits from the overnight moisturizing treatment; your nails also look more fresh and youthful. To keep them that way, be sure to apply a moisturizer containing alpha-hydroxy acids. In a pinch, just apply petroleum jelly. Apply the moisturizer to them while they are still a little moist from your overnight treatment; do not wait until your hands are dry.
7. Develop Habits That Keep Your Hands Moist and Youthful
Don’t do the overnight treatment more than once every 6 or 7 days. Exfoliating more often can cause your hands to look worn. Always moisturize your hands. Use gloves when washing the dishes or using hot water, and drink plenty of water. If feasible, use a humidifier, particularly during winter when indoor air can become very drying.
It’s worth having a couple of different hand creams: a light one for during the day and a heavier one for overnight. I also switch to a heavier one for the winter.
Do you give your hands enough TLC?