HAND CREAM

Who doesn’t love a fabulous hand cream…? Our Beauty Bible testers always do, judging from the high marks awarded to winning products over the years – and the same’s true with this round of testing. Taking a few seconds to smooth in something luscious is a moment to stop, breathe, relax, we always feel – and the TLC that it delivers to hands, nails and cuticles is almost an extra. That said, over the years we’ve found that many hand creams do have a rejuvenating effect – instantly, but also longer-term when used regularly. We asked specifically ‘anti-ageing’ questions about the products we sent out for this category – but since hands give away your age faster than a sneaky peek at your passport, it’s frankly never too early to use one of these. Do scroll down for further winners (including a total beauty ‘steal’) – all gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous!

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GOLD & BEST NATURAL AWARD Aurelia Repair & Brighten Hand Cream

We just love it when a previous Gold Award-winner triumphs again! Proves our system works. (We know it does. But it’s still nice to have proof!) This rich but swiftly-absorbed cream comes in a gold tube – plastic, rather than crinkle-prone metal – with a small twist-off black cap, and as ever with Aurelia, fragrance is important, with a glorious blend of vetiver, ylang ylang, lavender and patchouli. Red algae (to help with chapping), cassia senna (similar to hyaluronic acid), omega-rich baobab and kigelia Africana help create the luscious texture. In their own trials, the anti-pigmentation complex, based on sea daffodil, reduced size and density of pigmentation by up to 61% – but here’s what our testers had to say.

OUR TESTERS' COMMENTS:

'10/10. This was like no other hand cream I have ever tried. For a start, it smells like you’ve just walked into a spa. Then – the application in unreal, as it instantly absorbs into the skin. The – the results leave you with hands so soft they could rival a two year old’s. And my nails are in brilliant condition, the nail bed is moisturised with no hand nails. TBH, the only thing I didn't notice was any difference with pigmentation’ • ‘10/10! This lovely hand cream moisturised my old crepey hands LOL! Definitely has anti ageing properties. I will definitely be purchasing once this runs out’ • ‘Hands are soft and moisturised and I really liked the instructions on the side of the box about the mindful ritual’ • ‘I have never paid this amount for a hand cream before but I do think its worth the price – as a luxury treat on my budget. It’s most definitely the best hand cream I have ever used and I have used a lot: 100 per cent superior to any other. As an overnight treatment it worked wonderfully. My hands feel softer and smoother and there is a big improvement in my nails, they are stronger and look healthy’ • ‘The squeezable tube with a screw top is perfect for carrying in my handbag. Skin on hands looks firmer and younger and feel wonderful, nails look nourished and smooth, cuticles are soft. This exceeded all expectations; a beautiful hardworking product that has delivered amazing results while being a pleasure to use.’

£28 for 75ml - click to buy

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SILVER AWARD Kiss The Moon Love Night Cream for Hands

A night cream for hands? Actually, that’s the best time to slather generously, allowing cream to be absorbed by the skin and cuticles overnight. This jar of deeply nourishing hand cream – which has notched up several awards elsewhere already – is infused with rose absolute and ylang ylang specifically to aid relaxation at bedtime. The cream itself is whipped from shea butter and rosewater, along with vitamin A-rich rosehip seed oil to help support the skin’s natural repair process, while we slumber.

OUR TESTERS' COMMENTS:

'10/10! I adore this hand cream! I look forward to using it at night and my hands look so much better. I am a flower farmer: for eight hours a day, nearly seven days a week, my hands work the land growing beautiful flowers. They are in water a lot, pot up compost daily in all weathers, and sometimes get deep scratches from thorns. And I’m guilty of having neglected them. But when I realised after a few days that this cream was making them look much better, I was so so happy. I have bought another jar of this heavenly cream already. Thank you ‘Kiss the Moon’ for making my hands look beautiful again’ • ‘This smells of roses and I really like the fragrance, although strong it is not overpowering. It has a very thick, almost waxy texture, extremely rich and smooth but it rubbed in easily. You feel almost like there is a protective layer left on your skin, stopping them drying out. Having done more washing up than usual, I expected my hands to be rough and uncomfortable but apply this twice a day – and occasionally more when it happened to be nearby – my hands are smoother and softer than they were when I started’ • ‘Yes it works! As an overnight anti-ageing hand cream its perfect. It doesn't leave my hands uncomfortably greasy or with a residue in the morning. Definite improvements in appearance, skin tone evened out, and restorative nourishing effect on my nails once I took the gels off (though it didn't affect them when they were on)’ • ‘Beautiful luxurious-looking packaging and a heavy glass jar, which looks great on the bathroom shelf/by your bedside. Hands feel soft, moisturised and lovely!’ • ‘Loved the relaxing fragrance; it was nice to massage it into my hands for a minute so I could inhale this. Definitely made my hands softer and smoother, and nails healthy and pink’ • ‘This is on my wishlist now for Christmas and birthday presents. I would definitely buy it as a gift too’ • ‘After four weeks, my nail technician noticed that my nails are much stronger and my cuticles are great.’

£28 for 90g - click to buy

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BRONZE AWARD (JOINT) Prismologie Rose Quartz & Rose Hand & Cuticle Cream 

Prismologie’s USP is that products are powered by healing crystals – in fact they’re infused with microcrystals chosen to enhance the effect of each product. Here’s it’s rose quartz, the ‘stone of comfort’, alongside a slew of botanicals including softening marshmallow extract, baobab oil, shea butter, Arctic rose (‘to increase endorphin levels’) and an Alpine plant complex, to help even out skintone. They suggest applying the cream ‘when you need a break in your busy day’, cupping your hands over your nose, taking a long breath and letting ‘the comforting effects of pink wash over your whole body.’

OUR TESTERS' COMMENTS:

'10/10. Perfect thick consistency for my dry hands, not runny or sticky. Absorbed really quickly and went into really well, no dragging or stickiness left. I have been applying every night for several weeks and the results on dryness are very impressive. My hands are always in water with having a child and this has definitely made a difference to the feel and appearance, much better than my usual hand cream. My hands feel so nourished and moisturised. It’s absolutely spot on with what it promised and the results’ • ‘A quality product that is a joy to use. LOVED the very natural rose fragrance. I tend to massage my lower arms and elbows with the cream at the same time and the scent was particularly good for that because I work with the public and had several compliments on my new ‘perfume’…  My hands were a lot softer and smoother, particularly the backs’ • ‘Rich cream with a gorgeous rose fragrance that makes it luxurious to use. I look forward to using this at night, as it is such a treat. As it says on the tube, ‘cherish yourself, nurture wellbeing’. Keeps hands soft and moisturised, nails too. And gives the back of the hand I tested a smooth plumpness and sheen that the other doesn't have’ • ‘10/10. Excellent product in very girly packaging, which is a good size for my make up bag! Really like the consistency and the silky very creamy texture. My hands are noticeably less dry; it promises nourished hands and it does deliver. I would buy it again and in fact have bought the body balm to try as a result of testing this’ • ‘Perfect consistency, not remotely sticky or oil and very smooth to rub in. It absorbed quickly and I didn't find it left a residue after, so didn't slip when I picked up a mug or something’ • ‘Lovely hand cream for someone with dry hands. I like the gentle rose fragrance, which wasn't too old-ladyish...'

£30 for 75ml - click to buy

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BRONZE AWARD (JOINT) Kypwell Triple Action Hand & Nail Cream

Kypwell have fairly recently made it onto our radar so we suspect that they’re new to you, too. The brand was created by two long-time friends from Cyprus, to offer natural and holistic skincare, initially exclusively to clients at their Kypwell Club day spa in Limassol but now stretching their reach internationally. Jojoba, borage and avocado oils get their zesty aroma from essential oils of lemon and mandarin, while plant glucose and Xylitol top up hydration levels. It also works to strengthen fragile nails, we’re advised.

OUR TESTERS' COMMENTS:

‘My hands and nails have benefitted form using this cream; they feel in better condition and less aged. The skin feels softer and smoother, the age spot look less prominent and its made my nails stronger and they split less easily’ • ‘I used this rich cream daily and overnight as a masque. I’m very hard on my hands as I have two horses to look after and I work outside in the garden.  I always use hand creams and need something that is heavy duty. This left my hands soft and supple and the condition of hands and nails improved’ • ‘This is wonderful as it does make my age spots lighter. I am using it daily and my age spots have started to fade visibly. However, it isn’t rich enough to moisturise my hands properly’ • ‘Fabulous consistency and lovely packaging. Like the pump dispenser. I wasn't sure about the fragrance but ended up really liking it. Very easy to smooth in, absorbed immediately and made my hands very smooth and hydrated, and plumper. My dry cuticles look better’ • ‘Love that this product is vegan, a neutroceutical and free of mineral oils, parabens, GMOs etc. That ticks a lot of my boxes. I wash my hands a lot and use a lot of hand cream but this still seems to last a long time. A colleague commented on the lovely smell’ • ‘I really like this product and would buy it. It has really improved my skin, leaving my hands beautifully soft and hydrated. A lovely hand cream’ • ‘Hands very hydrated and smooth, nails stronger and whiter, less dryness around cuticles.’

£29.50 for 50ml - click to buy

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BRONZE (JOINT) and BEAUTY STEAL AWARD Natures Alchemist Multi-Tasking Hand Therapy

Such a steal! And really, a very good score for a product that’s available on the high street at Superdrug. Squeezed from a minimalist tube, this tube packs a moisturising punch via lingonberry and avocado oils, hydrating dragon fruit extract and nourishing coconut probiotics, together with turmeric and agave.

OUR TESTERS' COMMENTS:

‘This has really impressed me. I like the way it absorbs so quickly and I can see the difference on the skin of my hands. They look and feel a lot smoother, not so dry and wrinkly looking. I also like the fact it's vegan and gluten free with no parabens. I will be buying it again’ • ‘I haven’t used hand and nail creams often, although I had a manicure recently and was advised to do so. So I have started with this product and will do more in future. This does help with the nails being less dry on the surface and stops the tips flaking! Also less crepey appearance to back of hands and less puckered look to fingers’ • ‘Squeezable tube that is a very good size for my handbag. Ideal consistency, very smooth and creamy texture. Absorbed very easily and quickly. As Goldilocks would say, ‘it was just right’… It helped my dry patches instantly and made my hands softer. It promised to sooth, replenish and restore and I did notice the first two’ • ‘I liked the nice rich texture and the pleasant light scent. This eased the dryness round my fingertips and cuticles and kept the dry backs of my hands hydrated; it’s minimised that slightly puckered look. I would recommend it to anyone looking for a good basic hand cream’ • ‘Great for instant rehydration’ • ‘Very practical tube and the slightly runny cream has a very fresh clean floral fragrance. My hands felt smooth and less dehydrated.’

£4.49 for 75ml - click to buy