Photo Credit: handperfection.com
Take a good look at your hands. Do you they look older than you want them to? Without a doubt, they’re the first marker of age. “Hands may be the fastest aging body part because the skin is so incredibly thin and they’re constantly in the elements, plus we tend not to protect them the same way we protect the face,” says Ellen Sirot, the undisputed supermodel of hands. You might not recognize Sirot’s face, but you’ll definitely know her hands. They’ve been in ads for Avon, Neutrogena, Sally Hansen, Johnson’s, Verizon, Dove, Elizabeth Arden and countless others — clearly, she knows what she’s talking about!
SIROT’S 7 TIPS FOR AGELESS HANDS:
- SUN PROTECTION, EVERY DAY — Sunscreen is the most important step you can take to prevent age spots and hyperpigmentation. Make it part of your morning routine — slather it on the same time you’re shielding your face. Use the same high SPF product or choose a water resistant formula instead.
- PROTECT YOUR HANDS FROM WATER AND CHEMICALS — Water dries out the hands and detergents are extra harsh. Always wash with a soap-free cleanser and when you’re doing the dishes and cleaning house always, always, always wear protective dishwashing gloves.
- MOISTURIZE OFTEN — Since the skin on the hands thins as we age it’s important to use a hydrating cream often, especially after washing your hands. Look for those with hyaluronic acid to plump up the skin, antioxidants to protect from damaging free radicals, fatty acids for healthy skin, and sun protection.
- ONE-MINUTE A DAY — Gently push back cuticles with a washcloth while you are in the shower or immediately after using a nail conditioning oil to keep your nails healthy and strong.
- TOOL TIME — Never use your hands as tools to open letters, packages, bottles, etc. Rely on scissors, letter openers and the like.
- BEDTIME RITUAL — Keep a hand-specific treatment on your night table and use before bed to give the skin of your hands an overnight boost.
- FOLLOW THE HAND MODEL DIET — A few days before you need your hands to look their best (i.e., your own wedding or a special event) avoid caffeine, salt, and aerobic exercise unless you want your veins to take center stage.
Board certified, clinical and research dermatologist Dr. Jeannette Graf recommends treating your hands as you do your complexion, and says there are “completely customizable in-office procedures that can be tailored specifically to your needs.” These might include microdermabrasion treatments like DermaSweep, TCA Hand Peels, lasers, sclerotherapy, and injectable fillers.
PRETTY HAND PICKS:
- Avène Cold Cream Ultra Rich Soap-Free Cleansing Bar ($9) gently cleanses as it helps keep hands soft, hydrated and healthy. It’s formulated with thermal spring water to comfort dry, stressed, sensitive skin as it balances pH levels and soothes and nourishes skin. May also be used on face and body.
- ZO Skin Health Oraser Microderm Hand Renewal ($50) immediately improves hands thanks to sugar crystals to smooth, retinol to boost collagen production, shea butter to hydrate and maintain the moisture barrier, plus powerful antioxidants to combat free radicals.
Ellen Sirot’s HAND PERFECTION 3-piece Anti-Aging Hand Care System ($35; including S&H, HSN.com) is designed to stay on through multiple hand washings and is loaded with skin-friendly fatty acids and antioxidants to nourish, while helping combat signs of aging, plus it has optics technology to instantly improve hand appearance. 3-piece set includes a nail and cuticle pen, Nourishing Day Cream, and Rejuvenating Night cream.