Luxe, Hard-working Hand Care for the Colder Months Ahead

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01.LOEWE Solid Soap - Bodegón
Photo courtesy Loewe

The delicious creams, soaps and scents our parched paws are pining for

Stoically steering our daily lives, our hands can often go a little under-loved and ignored – dry, stripped and beaten by frequent exposure to chemicals, germ-smeared phones and toilet doors. Rather than our eyes as soul-windows, our hands are perhaps a mirror of our current capacity for self-care. And in the wake of a global pandemic, our hard-working hands are inevitably at the receiving end of harsh alcohols and unforgiving, moisture-zapping formulas that can leave skin feeling tight, crepey and sometimes sore. Even stress can negatively affect the condition of your hands – occasionally resulting in inflammatory skin conditions like eczema – with harsh soaps or sanitisers potentially sending skin on a further downward trajectory. Thankfully, the luxury beauty world stepped up – now a host of products prove that hand care needn’t feel unpleasant in order to be effective (I’m haunted by the doctor-prescribed pastes of my scaly skin’s past). From spa-like soaps to soothe both skin and soul (Loewe’s new Bar Soap in oregano is a welcome addition to the label’s expanding fragrance and bath range, while Buly 1803’s Huile de Savon Mexican Tuberose is both a soap and a nourishing oil) to mist-form sanitisers that kill bacteria without sending skin into a state of crisis, (Earl of East’s Rinse-Free Hand Cleanser actually moisturises with glycerin as it cleanses) this selection of skin-first formulas houses something to suit every hand.

LOEWE, Oregano Bar Soap 

Succulent and fresh-smelling, this rustic slab transports you to a Mediterranean herb garden on a crisp morning with every wash. It’s a sophisticated addition to any sink or shower – hung by a homely rope and featuring nourishing shea butter alongside tiny particles of red algae to delicately exfoliate without leaving skin feeling tight or ‘squeaky’.

Everlasting Hand Washes

As far as monster-sized delicious handwashes in eco-friendly refillable glass jars go, the Neroli & Mandarin hand and body wash from Bonum Pellis is the sink-side pleaser of choice. It joins Monta Monta’s Verbena, Geranium and Cedar hand washAesop’s all-time classic exfoliating Reverence Aromatique Hand Wash, and Diptyque’s cushiony, comforting Softening Hand Wash on the roster of go-to house-warming gifts. 

Forgo, Hand Wash

Forgo offers the ultimate in space-saving refills with sachets of powder that dissolve in tepid water to become a deliciously textured foaming hand wash. In refined minimal monochrome pump packaging, it looks great in your bathroom, too. 

Byredo, Vetyver Hand Cream

Byredo’s Vetyver hand and nail cream is a wee bit heavenly. Thanks to its slightly suncreamy scent (pinned by notes of balmy jasmine and crisp, powdery violet), but also an ultra rich formula that feeds both cuticles and skin with moisture.

Pelegrims, Hand Pomade

Pelegrims’ Hand Pomade offers a swift injection of hydrating hyaluronic acid, softening provitamin B5 and the brand’s signature ‘English Ortega Grape Extract’ (a by-product of the wine-making industry) to kickstart skin cell regeneration. A pea-sized amount goes a really long way, and the balm-like texture offers instant relief without feeling greasy. 

Dr Barbara Sturm, Aloe Vera Gel

This gel is an SOS treatment for sore and irritated skin – instantly cooling, soothing and hydrating with certified organic aloe leaf juice. 

Chanel, Le Lift Hand Cream

Packaged in a smooth pebble and delighting the senses with a cotton-like freshness, this cream is as much an accessory as it is an experience – elevating on-the-go hand care rituals (it’s perfect for handbags) with a youth-preserving cocktail of brightening liquorice extract and antioxidant-rich alfalfa concentrate to smooth, strengthen the skin barrier and encourage cell regeneration.

Nursem, Caring Skin Fix

Instagram-famous Nursem’s entire range has been developed by a paediatric intensive care nurse, who needed something to remedy her cracked and bleeding hands after time spent rigorously hand-washing at the hospital. Caring Skin Fix is completely fragrance-free with naturally derived ingredients and no potentially irritating chemicals (like parabens, sulphates or petrolatum) to soothe, hydrate and protect sensitive and sore hands.

Earl of East, Rinse-Free Hand Cleanser

Initially hitting you with a burst of mint before settling down to a slightly medicinal, fresh garden-like scent, Earl of East’s sanitising mist is uplifting and spa-like, evoking joy as it moisturises skin – all while killing 99.9 per cent of germs. 

Susanne Kaufmann, Hand Peel Rejuvenating

Anyone with the time for an at-home hand peel has reached self-care Nirvana – if that's you, make it Susanne Kaufmann's all-natural iteration. Stimulating skin renewal, this magic gel soothes, smooths, hydrates and improves the skin barrier to keep hands looking youthful.

Buly 1803, Huile de Savon Mexican Tuberose

Uniting the nourishing powers of an oil with the cleansing prowess of a soap, this unctuous formula offers an utterly divine cleanse. The pleasingly silky texture whisks away impurities while soothing hands, and the Farmacia-inspired packaging brings a certain something to your sink-side.