You probably have anti-aging products and strategies for your face – but what about your hands? They age, too! Like our faces, they are susceptible to sun damage, environmental insults like soaps and hand sanitizers, and just everyday “wear and tear.” And since we need our hands to do almost everything, they tend to look older than our faces.
Here are a few of the challenges that our hands face (and ways you can help):
Problem: Hands get washed countless times during the day long, which has a drying effect on the skin — which, of course, contributes to wrinkling.
What to do?
- Try to apply moisturizer to your hands after every exposure to water. Use something fairly thick – a cream not a lotion.
- Also, use products similar to the ones you use on your face on your hands: an antioxidant in the morning under sunscreen and a gentle retinol or tretinoin at night.
Problem: Hands get a lot of sun, which destroys the already-thin skin. It’s all that sun exposure, not aging, that causes most of your brown spots. Sun exposure also reduces skin thickness, collagen, and elasticity.
What to do?
- Reapply sunscreen as much as you can.
- Hands get a surprising amount of sun while driving because UVA goes through car window glass, so use driving gloves to cover the backs of the hands. I’m a fan of the Bloxsun gloves – they are easy to get on and off, can be washed, leave your fingertips free and have a slight grip for the wheel.
- For damage already done, consider corrective treatments like IPL/photorejuvenation or Fraxel Dual. IPL (intense pulsed light) is the first choice because it doesn’t break the skin at all, and you can use your hands right afterwards for normal activities. The Fraxel Dual requires special care for your hands for a few days but also targets brown spots. It builds collagen more than the IPL.
Problem: Hands lose fat as we age. And when it comes to our hands, losing fat is not a good thing: the fat in your hands acts as cushioning around your veins, making them look less prominent. So, less fat means more visible veins.
What to do?
- Try using Juvederm or Restylane for volume to plump the skin on the back of your hands and camouflage the veins.
With great basic care and a preventive approach, there is no need for hands to age faster than your face. Investing even a little time in your skin now will really pay off in the future.