Our hands work hard every day, whether they’re typing away at a computer, doing some gardening, or carrying shopping bags from the car to the pantry. It’s little wonder that our hands seem to age faster than the rest of our bodies.
That’s because, as you age, your skin thins and the fat in the backs of your hands disappears. Because of the reduced elasticity of your skin, and reduced volume of your hands, your hands can wrinkle and age spots form.
What’s more, we expose our hands to the sun more than any other part of the body, and the more we do with our hands, the more we wash them. Washing your hands regularly – which has been all the more important during the COVID-19 pandemic, removes natural oils from your hands, resulting in dry and cracked surfaces. And let’s face it: wrinkling, dry hands can make you look older. But there are some ways you can keep your hands looking youthful…
Develop a hand-care routine
The most obvious way to hold onto your youthful-looking hands is to take good care of them on an ongoing basis. When you’re out and about, make sure you apply sunscreen with an SPF of 50 or above, and reapply cream regularly to ensure you’re protected from the sun’s harmful UV rays. If you’re regularly outdoors, consider gloves, and keep them on when you are cleaning so that your skin isn’t exposed to harsh chemicals that can damage your skin.
As well as applying sunscreen, you should keep your hands well-hydrated. Use moisturiser throughout the day – have a tub of it next to your handwash so you know when to reapply it – and make sure you’re drinking lots of water throughout the day, too. Your skin is your largest organ and it’s vital that it’s well-hydrated to protect your natural collagen and elastin levels.
Exfoliate your hands
Another way to turn back the clock on your hands is to remove the outer layer of the skin and reveal fresh, glowing skin underneath. Periodic exfoliation can reduce wrinkles and correct uneven skin tones whilst improving its texture, but you should avoid relying on harsh chemicals or treatments too often, as it could have the opposite effect and cause dryness, itching, and cracked skin, which will lead to further wrinkles. Other options to consider are derma-blading and laser resurfacing, but these are more extreme and can pose health risks.
If you’re looking for a simpler way to exfoliate and don’t want to spend a fortune on expensive treatments or products, we’ve got you covered. Remember that dry skin is dead skin, so use a mixture of lemon and sugar to exfoliate and tone your skin. Moisturise after.
If it wasn’t already obvious, smoking’s not only bad for your insides, but it can have a lasting and devastating impact on your skin, too, causing dull, grey, pale, and crinkly skin. What’s more, smoking can cause your fingertips to go yellow which is unsightly and hard to resolve.
Why is smoking so bad for your skin? It destroys collagen and elastin, which forces your skin to lose its firmness and suppleness. It can prematurely age your skin and cause vascular constriction that limits blood flow. An even more concerning statistic is that smokers are 52% more likely to suffer from squamous cell carcinoma than those who do not, due to a lowered immune system caused by toxins in cigarette smoke. Smoking can also trigger psoriasis and acne inversa and increases the risk of Buerger’s disease which can inflame the blood vessels of the hands and cause both tissue damage and pain, as well as skin ulcers and the risk of gangrene. If you can, quit smoking or look towards healthier alternatives like vaping.
If you’re particularly anxious about the appearance of your hands and hate looking at your prominent veins, tendons, and brown spots, you can consider more invasive options such as dermal fillers and intense pulsed light (IPL). This provides deep dermal hydration, improving your hand skin’s health and skin tone. Some clinics even offer hyaluronic acid injectable gels which can restore the fullness to the backs of your hands, and it’s approved by the FDA.
The good news is that there are few negative side effects to hand injections other than temporary swelling and bruising, but all cosmetic procedures carry risks, so you should only work with a qualified physician. We suggest considering alternative methods beforehand.
Follow the advice above and you’ll turn back the hands of time (pardon the pun). For more features on looking and feeling your best, subscribe to the Oralift blog, and check out our anti-ageing device to help you achieve a glowing, natural, rejuvenated face in no time at all.