Monday, September 9, 2013

Beauty Challenge: Younger Hands In Just 2 Weeks!

[As published on Emmagem.com HERE]
Did you know that the skin on the backs of our hands is much thinner than the skin on our face? In fact, it’s as delicate as the fragile skin around our eyes! There is very little fat on the backs of our hands, and very few sweat glands. “Our hands are not only susceptible to the first signs of ageing as they age even faster than our face,” says Ellen Marmur, chief of dermatological and cosmetic surgery at Mount Sinai Medical Centre, New York City.
As we age, our skin starts to lose its elasticity. Gone are the familiar bounciness and plump smoothness as they’re gradually being replaced by papery-thin, crepe-like skin that’s dotted with pigmentation. Truth be told, the biggest giveaways of age are the neck and hands, two body parts that are often neglected or forgotten by women.
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From today onwards, Emmagem is asking you to take on our ‘challenge’. Try to make a habit out of applying hand cream at least once a day. The best time would be to massage it in right before you go to bed, as we know how annoying it can get during the daytime, especially when hands that have been applied with hand cream come into contact with moisture. Sticky, slippery, greasy stains – not exactly our thing either. In 2 weeks, you’ll be able to notice a difference!

Here are some tips on how to choose a hand cream that works for you:
Don’t be a sucker for cheap stuff. I always believe that if it’s too cheap, there must be a catch. El cheapo hand creams are often packed with synthetic ingredients and man-made fragrances, which can trigger allergies and/or draw out even more moisture from our skin. If a 200ml tube of hand creams costs RM3.90, be wary.
Understand what you’re using it for. Do you want something rich and creamy that can be used as a hand mask? Or do you prefer a hand cream you can reapply easily in the office? If you want something you can chuck into your handbag for on-the-go convenience, always look for one with a leak-proof cap that won’t pop open and decorate the insides of your favourite handbag with hand cream.
Have more than one hand cream lying around. I have one beside my bed, one on my dressing table and one in my handbag. The one beside by bed smells awesome and gets me in the mood for bedtime, and the texture is very rich. The one on my dresser is a non-scented, hypo-allergenic one for times when I have scaly patches, and the one in my handbag is a lightweight gel-lotion that won’t leave my hands oily.
Look for skin-friendly moisturising ingredients. Hyaluronic acid, shea butter, almond oil, ceramides and vitamin E are popular ingredients that keep your skin nourished and hydrated. Hand creams that contain lots of oil-based ingredients are great for women with dry skin.
The scent is a bonus, but not a necessity. If you manage to find a scent that you love, good for you! But it doesn’t have to be a priority – there are a lot of non-scented pharmaceutical-grade hand creams that work wonders, especially if you have sensitive skin or if your hands are severely dry.

Emmagem Recommends: Food For Your Hands
Rose
No woman can resist the alluring scent of fresh roses, which we can now enjoy in handy tubes. Rejoice!
  1. Hada Labo Deep Moisturizing Hand Cream: Contains hyaluronic acid, vitamin E and macadamia oil to deeply moisturise skin and restore smoothness. The Bulgarian rose scent helps your relax.
  2. Cath Kidston Rose Hand Cream (available at Sephora): Enriched with vitamins B and E and glycerin to moisturise hands. The pretty aluminium tube is a definite plus point.
  3. Crabtree & Evelyn Rosewater Hand Therapy: Infused with macadamia nut oil, shea butter and ceramides, the ultra-rich cream helps rehydrate dry skin with every application.
  4. Jurlique Rose Hand Cream: Formulated without parabens, synthetic fragrances or petrochemicals, this luxurious treat deeply hydrates hands to keep them soft and supple.

balms
A melt-on-the-skin oil-based balm comforts severely dry hands. Best used sparingly at night before bedtime.
  1. Aesop Resurrection Aromatique Hand Balm: Rehydrate parched hands and cuticles with a blend of botanical extracts and skin-softening emollients. An Aesop international bestseller.
  2. Burt’s Bees Hand Salve: Super-dry hands find relief with this all-natural salve, made from a concoction of botanical oils, herbs and beeswax.
  3. L’OCCITANE Pure Shea Butter: Housed in a pocket-sized tin, use this balm on cracked patches to instantly soothe and nourish skin. Can also be used from head to toe.
  4. Lucas’ Papaw Ointment (available in Australia): This is a godsend for cracked knuckles and dry patches. Made from fermented papaya pulp and petroleum jelly, the balm can also be used to heal cuts and minor burns.

nourish
Luxurious, rich and creamy, these picks are well-worth the splurge. They’re packed with lots of moisturising ingredients, too.
  1. The Body Shop Almond Hand & Nail Cream: Contains sweet almond oil and panthenol, both well-known emollients. The shea butter used is also ethically-sourced.
  2. Antipodes Deliverance Kowhai Flower Hand Cream (available at tns skinlab): The silky healing cream soothes and smoothes hands with vitamin E and avocado oil while relaxing  the spirit with a blend of essential oils.
  3. Korres Almond Oil & Calendula Hand Cream (available at Luxola.com): Almond oil, shea butter and calendula nourish and repair hands while retaning skin’s natural moisture level.
  4. Tokyo Milk Dark Hand Crème (available at Kaleidoscope, Publika): Cult brand Tokyo Milk’s luxe range, Dark, combines wonderfully complex scents with a shea butter, avocado oil and aloe vera base.

no fuss
Straight to the point without any frou-frou fanciness, these hand creams let their effectiveness do the talking.
  1. Neutrogena Norwegian Formula Hand Cream: Clinically proven to heal dry hands, the effects of this hand cream lasts all day long thanks to its concentrated formula.
  2. EUBOS Sensitive Hand Repair & Care Cream: Formulated with urea, rose water and glycerine, this fast-absorbing hand cream protects hands from elements of the environment.
  3. Rosken Skin Repair Hand Cream: This brand has been the go-to for people with sensitive skin for as long as we can remember. Olive extracts help with skin regeneration.
  4. Physiogel Cream: The mild formula contains no preservatives, no fragrances and no colourants, and is perfect for all types of skin.

(Lifestyle images: magazine.ba, pinterest.com)

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