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Hand Care

Most women pamper their face and their necks because they think it is what most people will look at first. They are right, but the face and neck have something hands do not which keep those parts of the body looking young longer: sebaceous glands. The palms of the hand have no sebaceous glands while the skin on the back of the hands is soft and thin and thus prone to wrinkling and pigmentation. Moreover, the hands are exposed to harsh detergents as well as the elements i.e. sun and wind. Ergo, age will show faster on the hands than the face and neck. And most people notice the hands eventually.

The key to keeping the hands looking younger is to moisturize daily, if possible after every hand washing because the combination of the lack of sebaceous glands and constant use can cause peeling and cracking of the skin, and nothing is less attractive than peeling skin. Eventually as well, the hands will become permanently wrinkled and look old. Try to protect hands from the sun and keep them dry as water left on the skin will evaporate and further dry the skin out. A hand massage is also recommended as often as possible. It is relaxing, and increases the circulation that could help in eliminating little aches and pains that may be due to overuse and abuse. This can be done after washing or bathing, every night before going to bed or after particularly strenuous activity. Use a light moisturizer every time. For really rough, coarse skin, slather on generous amounts of moisturizing cream and slip on a pair of cotton gloves before going to bed.

For a little extra pampering, it may be a good idea to treat your hands to an herbal or oil batch using an infusion of chamomile or sage in one quart of water. Soak hands for about 20 minutes then dry thoroughly before applying a rich moisturizer, such as a mixture of one teaspoon of honey and 3 tablespoons of unsalted butter. Add 1 tbsp of the herbal infusion and apply to the hands.
When skin tone is a bit blotchy, try rubbing some lemon on the skin to even it out. Keep your hands warm for overall health. When doing dishes, the laundry or any activity that will damage hands and nails such as gardening, wear rubber gloves lined with cotton. After washing the hands, pat dry and apply a lactic acid-based moisturizer to bind water to the skin more effectively.

Part of the hand that is given some attention is the nails but a manicure should be used in moderation because over-application of nail polish may stain and dry nails. Also ensure that the implements used are clean and free from bacteria to prevent an infection. Avoid sharp angles when shaping the nails and file only in one direction using a fine file. A manicure once weekly is recommended. Be on the look out for signs of disease such as thickening of the nail (fungal infection), pitting (psoriasis) or separation from the nail bed (thyroid deficiency). Nice hands are a sign not only of youth, but hygiene and a healthy lifestyle. It takes just a little bit of effort and cultivation of certain habits to make it a breeze.

 
   
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