We all know the importance of using a hand cream and keeping our hands moisturized – it helps to prevent dry, cracked hands – but do you know the importance of using the right hand cream? Believe it or not, simply slathering on whatever old lotions you have lying around your cupboards could actually be making your dry hands worse.
‘Bad’ hand creams usually contain many different types of chemicals (some of which are almost impossible to pronounce, let alone identify). These are damaging for two reasons.
Firstly, the National Eczema Association reports that around 10% of us suffer with eczema on our hands, which can cause dry, cracked hands. This is something that can be aggravated by harsh chemicals.
Secondly, these chemicals can actually cause our hands to dry out even more with long term use; creating a nasty cycle.
It’s not just chemicals that are a sign of a bad hand cream though. If you’re struggling to keep your skin feeling smooth and silky, here’s what you should be looking for in a hand cream for dry skin:
- Super Fast Absorption
Hand creams help to relieve dry, cracked hands with oils and butters. But as you’ll know if you’ve ever spilled a drop of olive oil on the kitchen floor while cooking dinner, these ingredients are slippery! With some hand creams, you’ll feel the oils sat on the surface of your skin. Not only does this mean they’re not doing their job properly but you may also find it a little uncomfortable. To combat this, look for hand creams that are fast absorbing. This means they get to work really quickly and won’t leave your hands feeling greasy.
- A Little Extra Care
Why choose a hand cream that performs just a single task when you can have an all-in-one hand cream? Many people choose to treat dry, cracked hands with lotions that contain droplets of petroleum jelly. The advantage of this is that you get the hydration from the moisturizing hand cream, and the petroleum jelly forms a protective barrier that helps to keep that moisture locked in where it’s needed most.
- Beneficial Ingredients
Reading through an ingredient list on a beauty product can be a little confusing, but don’t worry. When it comes to hand creams, look out for oils – particularly mineral oils and seed oils – as these are the things that are going to hydrate and moisturize your dry, cracked hands. Also look out for softening agents that soften dry skin. There are many different softening agents out there, but one of the most common is glycerin. Also take a look at what’s NOT included in your hand cream as lotions without perfumes are gentler to skin.
There are so many different hand creams out there that shopping can feel a little overwhelming so remember that harsh chemicals can dry the skin out more and check the ingredient list carefully. Always opt for creams with a non-greasy formula and which will help restore your skin without causing other problems.