Because without it I would be a molting, flaking reptile. Because dry skin makes you more susceptible to papercuts. Because hands most easily give away one’s age.
Whatever the reason, hand cream has a permanent place in my purse this winter. It has been incredibly drying in NYC, and without it, I am scaly, itchy, flaky, and any other adjective used to describe a snake shedding its top epidermal layer. Particularly, the skin around my cuticles and the webby part between the thumb index finger are the worst looking. So I picked up some Neutrogena Norwegian Formula Hand Cream in the Fragrance-Free Version.
Love it! The clear gel/cream is thick enough that you only need a little bit to hydrate both hands, and absorbs quickly so you don’t have to wait around. The fragrance-free formula is perfect for work too, because I don’t want to attack my coworkers with strong-smelling girly lotion (the fragrance version is fairly intense). I got mine for $5 at a local drugstore.
Another option for hand cream, a more expensive luxurious alternative, is L’Occitane’s hand cream, available in many formulas and scents. I gifted my aunt one of the trio sets for Christmas, which contained the Shea Butter, Cherry Blossom, and Lavender mini-versions, perfect for sticking in the handbag and finding your preferred smell. These are supposed to be best-selling hand creams on the market, and keep your hands supersoft. The price is $25 a pop for a 5.2oz, so a bit pricey, but there’s a sale going on at the website right now!