Like the skin on the neck and chest, the skin on the back of your hands is extremely thin and delicate. Add the surprising amount of time it has spent soaking up sun over the years (just think about how often youre driving, with your hands propped up on the steering wheel!)and you have a recipe for accelerated aging. If you dont protect your hands well with sunscreen, youll get that thinned-out, crepey, spottled look, says Kenneth Mark, MD, a dermatologist in New York City. But you can keep them looking young and smooth by targeting two of the most common aging-related concerns.
Keep hands moist As you probably already know, well-hydrated skin instantly looks less wrinkly but well repeat it one more time for good measure: When you add moisture, that moisture seeps in and plumps the skin, temporarily smoothing its surface. So give your hands repeated TLC. Areas like the hands need more regular lubrication than the face, because the face has a lot more oil glands on it, says Paul J. Frank, MD, founder and director of The Fifth Avenue Dermatology Surgery and Laser Center in New York City. Moisturize morning and night, and toss a hydrating hand cream in your purse to re-up every time you wash your handswhich could cause extra drying.
Repair skin overnight If thin, crepey skin on your hands is your biggest aging issue, you could consider using a collagen-stimulating anti-aging serum or cream, says Dr. Frank. But know this: It might not be your best use of money. The further you go away from your heartlike the hands and the feetthe less the circulation, and the more difficult they are to treat, he says. That even goes for in-office procedures, like lasers. Instead, Dr. Frank usually recommends this easy (and cheap!) at-home treatment for his patients: First, put on a heavier, petroleum jelly-based ointment before bed, then slip on a pair of cotton gloves or socks and go to sleep. For women who complain about crinkly or dry skin, it really works wonders to restore suppleness, he says.
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