The Anti-Aging Program for your hands
Dermatologist reveals the best tips for soft and firm skin on the hands
Anti-aging for the hands: Dryness lines, age spots and clearly visible veins often make hands look older than they actually are. An expert tells us how you manage to make people not recognise your age on your hands.
Small wrinkles, fine lines, dryness: age shows itself particularly quickly on the hands. No wonder, because your hands are permanently exposed to sun, air and temperature fluctuations and have to get a grip every day. Without the right anti-aging care for the hands, sensitive skin suffers – and shows wrinkles. What you should pay attention to when it comes to hand care.
Disinfect: Protection against corona, strain on the skin
Since the Corona pandemic, hand washing and hand disinfection have become part of everyday life more than ever. Soap, water and disinfectants are used several times a day. What is an important measure to protect against the corona pathogen SARS-CoV-2 is a real challenge for the skin of the hands. Dr. Uta Schlossberger, a dermatologist from Cologne, Germany, also experiences this: “More and more patients who have to deal with persistent hand eczema come to me. The constant contact with the degreasing surfactants in the soap and with the alcohol in the disinfectants not only makes the skin wrinkle and rough, but can also cause real inflammation”.
Many of her patients are desperate: Their hands are red, inflamed, itchy, scaly, wet and burning. To prevent this from happening, the dermatologist recommends that you pay attention to good skin care for your hands.
Prevent dry hands: gentle soap helps
With a gentle, pH-neutral soap, anyone can take a first step against wrinkled hands. To avoid unnecessarily irritating the skin, the soap should ideally be free of fragrances and preservatives. Moreover, soap does not need to form huge mountains of foam to cleanse thoroughly. Lightly foaming soaps also remove viruses, bacteria and dirt. The more a soap lathers, the more surfactants it contains – and the more it releases moisture and natural fats from the skin. Dry hands look grey, flaky and wrinkled.
Disinfectants: a good solution when you’re on the move
If you wash your hands thoroughly at home, you can do without disinfectants – and save yourself a decisive strain on your hands. Water and soap reliably remove germs from the skin. Hygiene experts recommend soaping your hands for 20 seconds. According to the German Federal Centre for Health Education (BZgA), thorough hand washing reduces the number of germs by up to one thousandth.
For example, thorough hand washing can almost halve the risk of diarrhoea. The temperature of the water is not important for the cleansing effect, but it is for the skin: “Make sure that the water is not warmer than 38.5 degrees,” advises Schlossberger. “Hot water stresses your hands and promotes dryness, itching and wrinkles.
Hand disinfectants, on the other hand, are practical for when you are out and about, when there is no sink nearby. In the meantime, there are antibacterial and antiviral gels with caring ingredients. They offer the skin at least some care. The less the skin dries out, the better the anti-aging protection for your hands.
Anti-aging for the hands: Creams, creams, creams
The most important protection for the sensitive skin on the hands is creaming: “The best anti-aging for the hands is to cream, cream, cream. This will provide your skin with moisture and oil, making it more resistant and supple. Well-cared for hands age less quickly,” emphasises Schlossberger. “You should cream your hands after every hand washing. It’s best to carry a small tube in every bag. Without cream, anti-aging for the hands is not possible”.
The dermatologist also advises you to make sure your hand cream is of good quality to strengthen the protective layer of the skin. The term “sensitive” is not a reliable indication. The term is not protected. Manufacturers are allowed to give this label to themselves. It is better to look at the ingredients. “Good anti-aging ingredients for your hand cream are hyaluronic acid, urea and panthenol,” says Schlossberger. “On the other hand, you should avoid silicones and mineral oils. They do not have a skin-caring effect, as they are not absorbed into the skin, but are only applied to the uppermost layer of the skin”.
Against age spots: Sun protection for the hands
And the dermatologist has another anti-aging tip for the hands: UV protection. Hand creams with a high sun protection factor help to prevent wrinkles and age spots on the hands. Schlossberger uses an example to show how effective sun protection is: “You can see it clearly with professional golfers. They wear a glove on one hand. And it is precisely on this hand that few or no age spots are visible. Why is this so? Because the skin is protected from the sun by the glove”.
Anti-Aging for the hands: Gloves a must in winter
Gloves are another anti-aging tip for the hands. Warm hands are important for good blood circulation. And hands with good blood circulation are provided with nutrients. If the hands cool down, not only is the blood circulation reduced: “From about eight degrees, the production of the sebaceous and sweat glands decreases. Without the natural skin protection of the hands, they become rough and dry. Dryness wrinkles develop. The cold additionally accelerates this process,” says Schlossberger. “Wear gloves in winter. It protects.” And in addition to gloves as an anti-aging treatment for the hands, the following applies more than ever in winter: cream, cream, cream.