The Grooming Manual
The eyes may be the window to the soul, but the hands are the window into your grooming habits - and the key to a great first impression.
Think about it: your hands are one of the first things that people see when they meet you. And the very first thing that they touch.
Callouses, unkempt nails, a flaky or rough texture -- these all leave a bad first impression, not to mention leave your skin feeling uncomfortable and dry.
But you can make those hands impressive without too much effort. Here are our top tips for getting your hand grooming right.
1. Hydrate Your Hands Regularly
Your hands can't magically retain moisture on their own. Your hands go through a lot -- particularly with constant hand washing and sanitizing that strip away any natural oils and moisture. Cold, dry air and thick fabrics only serve to make things worse during the winter.
That’s why you have to hydrate daily with a hand lotion that contains humectants, emollients, and occlusive ingredients.
- Humectants (like hyaluronic acid), draw in moisture from the environment.
- Emollients and occlusives like jojoba oil and shea butter seal that moisture in for long-lasting moisture.
New to the idea of hand hydration? Try it at bedtime first. That way, your hands won’t feel slick during the day and you won’t have to continuously apply as you wash your hands throughout the day.
2. Don’t Cut Your Nails Right After A Shower
Contrary to popular belief, you shouldn’t cut your nails right when you get out of the shower. Yes, the water makes your nails softer and easier to cut.
But this isn’t necessarily a good thing since it makes your nails more prone to rips and tears. Instead, cut your nails when your hands are dry to ensure a clean cut and a more uniform, healthy finish.
3. Ditch the Stripping Soap
Stop. Using. Cheap. Soap.
For real. Your skin is worth more than the discount soap at the drugstore that's full of harsh detergents, surfactants, and alcohols. Those ingredients damage your skin and compromise your natural microbiome. Over time, this will lead to chronic dehydration, flaking, and cracked skin.
Instead, wash your hands with a mild, natural hand soap. Ours is made with skin soothing ingredients that fight dryness - including aloe vera and glycerin.
4. Apply SPF
Harsh truth: 90% of visible signs of agings are caused by UV damage from the sun. So if you want to avoid age spots, liver spots, and other tell-tale signs of age on your hands, you have to protect them the sun.
This can be with physical protection in the form of gloves, but most of the year that's not a practical solution.
That’s why we recommend a daily SPF moisturizer. Apply it first thing in the morning for the best results. It's easy to remember when you make it part of your routine -- like just after you get out of the shower or while your brush your teeth.
5. Avoid Washing With Extra Hot Water
Yes, hot water can feel great on a cold day. But it’s the worst thing for your skin.
Extra hot water, like harsh soap, strips away the skin’s natural oils. That leaves you much more likely to deal with symptoms like redness, roughness, dryness, and cracking of the skin.
So skip the steam and opt for cool water instead.
6. Consider Your Nail Clipping Technique
How you clip your nails matters. Because square, jagged or sharp corners are never a great look. To this end, make sure that you:
- Never over clip your fingernails. Yes, you want a nice short length. But no, you don’t want to create sensitivity or encourage ingrowing.
- Even out your edges! Use a nail file to shape your nail and square off the edges so you get a nice, even slope.
- Buff the nail to get rid of ridges and encourage shine.
7. Give Your Cuticles Some TLC
Don’t neglect your cuticles - the tissue around the edges of your nails. They can easily overgrow and become uneven or scratchy to the touch.
To avoid this problem, use a tool to push the cuticles down when you get out of the shower. That’s it. You simply push them back until they appear even along the edge of the nail. You can also apply skin oil to hydrate them and get rid of any rough texture.
Here’s to great first impressions every time you show off your well groomed hands!