The initial protective and preventive command during the wave of this pandemic was loud and clear: wash your hands. Use hand sanitiser. Wash your hands again. These six hand creams will give your well-washed, but dry, hands a much-needed hydration boost.

TEXT: JANE ETHERIDGE

In London, advertisements flooded the city demanding we wash our hands while singing ‘Happy Birthday’ to ourselves (a solid 20 seconds, FYI). A wander down the personal care aisle in the supermarket was met with baron shelves and repeated placards informing us that any product remotely related to hand hygiene was unfortunately ‘out of stock’. Over the channel in France, Louis Vuitton switched production of luxury perfume in order to manufacture enough hand sanitizer for the French health authorities. And while around the world our hands may be squeaky clean and germ-free, they’re silently suffering. 

While its germ and bacteria killing properties are undisputed, frequent hand washing and use of hand sanitiser dries out skin by stripping the natural, protective oils. Because of the continued irritation, our hands get dry, cracked and raw. But never fear, we’ve put together the best hand moisturisers, for any budget, to keep those palms perfectly healthy and happily hydrated.

Extreme Hydration Concentrate by The Chemistry Brand

Sister brand to skincare staple The Ordinary and owned by parent company Deciem, The Chemistry Brand totes itself as a brand focused on treatments to fight all aspects of hand and body aging. Their hand cream Extreme Hydration Concentrate was met with rave reviews upon release and continues to be a best seller among fellow Deciem disciples. Ultra-concentrated hydration complex contains five hydration active technologies from marine and plant sources that provide lasting hydration to the skin, offering dramatic visible textural improvements. Expect results immediately, in 24 hours and in 10 days with continued use.

Working Hands Cream by O’Keeffes

This best-rated hand cream on Amazon deserves a place on this list because, I mean, come on.. Best. Rated. On. Amazon. That’s no easy feat. The stuff must be good. A quick scroll through reviews reveals praise along the lines of “deserves 6 out of 5 stars” and “improved my OCD hands like nothing before.” The brand states that, from builders and contractors to gardeners and nurses, many people suffer from the discomfort that dry skin can bring. Their promise is to make the best skincare products for workers who rely day-to-day on their hands. Non-greasy and free from scents and perfumes, O’Keeffe’s Working Hands not only moisturises dry skin, but also protects your skin, giving it the chance to heal. Maintaining healthy hands not only feels great and keeps them active, but it also helps prevent other more serious problems from developing. 

Hand Food by Soap & Glory

I’d only recently come across this ‘cult’ brand after moving to the UK a few months ago, but girls here can’t seem to stop talking about it and reviews, across a plethora of sites, insist it’s a goodie and one to get amongst. With moisturising shea butter, macadamia oil and marshmallow, Hand Food is non-greasy, non-sticky — and there’s no way you’ll be able to keep your mitts off it.

Super Handy by Go-To

How can one not love Go-To? We all know a product developed by a beauty editor isn’t going to be inferior. Their Super Handy hand cream is a delicious hand and nail cream packed with luscious butters and powerful antioxidants which are non-greasy and non-sticky. It moisturises whilst also protecting against environmental aggressors and the skin’s barrier is kept intact and the cuticles are kept healthy and tidy.

Resurrection Aromatique Hand Balm by Aēsop

When I was a broke student I accidentally spent $60 on an Aēsop hand wash and by the time I realised the price the sales assistant had already wrapped the alleged liquid gold and given me four sachets of sample products and in a state of shock I handed over my debit card and in even greater state of shock my card didn’t decline and I walked out realising I couldn’t afford food for the week but would hopefully have soft and nice smelling hands (I did, tbh).

Ever since that week of starvation it’s been a love/hate, albeit triggering relationship with the brand but none can deny the quality of their products, including their Resurrection Hand Balm. The balm contains a blend of beneficial botanicals that soothe and hydrate the skin without leaving hands greasy.

Regenerating Hand Cream by Weleda

I’ve been a huge fan of Swiss brand Weleda ever since discovering their all-in-one Skin Food cream (if you haven’t tried it, do) and their regenerating hand cream receives similar praise. The cream contains certified organic shea butter, rich in fatty acids, which protects skin from moisture loss, while natural plant extracts stimulate cell renewal to keep hands soft and refreshed. Swiftly-absorbed Pomegranate Regenerating Hand Cream protects your hands against the drying effects of water, free-radicals and dry air, with a luxurious blend of organic pomegranate seed oil, shea butter, sesame oil and golden millet extract. Slack skin becomes firm, dryness disappears and capable hands are helped back to their soft and supple best.

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