It's that time of year again - winter in Australia. While it doesn't get super cold here, I still feel like my skin is more dry during our winters. I have to apply my lip balm more often in winter and I am obsessed with re-applying hand cream after every hand wash. By the way, you still need to stay hydrated during winter, so toilet breaks are still something that happens quite regularly for me.
Read on for my favourite hand creams, some Australian and some International!
1. Aesop Resurrection Hand Balm and Rind Concentrate Body Balm
Aēsop is an Australian skin care brand owned by Brazilian company Natura. Aesop was founded by hairdresser Dennis Paphitis in 1987 in Melbourne. My sister in law originally recommended the Aesop Resurrection Hand Balm. She and I both share sensitive skin issues, so I knew I would be able to use it! It contains a blend of botanicals and skin-softening emollients that deliver rich hydration to hands and cuticles. While Aesop is not a purely natural brand, I love that it includes almond, coconut and mandarin oil and the included rosemary gives it its signature scent. It is formulated for frequent use and my hands feel moisturised but not greasy when I use it.
I have started to use the Aesop Rind Concentrate Body Balm as a hand cream just recently. I received a sample when I went to get a friend a gift at the Myer Aesop counter. I loved the smell of it, however as I have mentioned before, I can't use thick naturally based products on my face. I find them too heavy and I also am very particular about what I put on my body too. This citrus-based formulation relieves dry skin and the botanicals soften, cool and revive skin; perfect for year-round use. I find the smell more refreshing than the Resurrection Hand Balm and it has the same moisturising properties without the greasiness too!
2. Hand Chemistry Pro-Repair Hand Cream
DECIEM | The Abnormal Beauty Company is a new discovery for me. I walked past it in Priceline and since I love spotting new and interesting packaging, I picked their serums up. They have just recently launched in Australia and have impressive sales statistics online:
Selling $65M+ in retail in just two years;
• Expanding from one market to 23 in just 23 months;
• Shipping two million units since April 2013; and
• Selling one of their beauty supplements every 11 seconds!
That is all well and good, but do their products live up to the hype. I used one of their vitamin c serums and found it too greasy, so I wasn't expecting much from their Pro-Repair Hand Cream. I actually didn't know that this was DECIEM, which is lucky for them, because after the serum I wouldn't have picked it up. This hand cream got awesome reviews, some people were saying it was anti-aging and it whitened almost instantly. I wasn't sure I could believe that, but I thought I would give it a go.
This hand cream smells amazing (apricots) and goes on well. I like the packaging, the tube is flat and matte and easy to hold. It is lighter and fresher than the Aesop products and it makes your hands appear less wrinkled for a while. I think the whitening claim is a bit of a stretch, I think that it makes your hands appear whiter because it moisturises so well. I find it perfect to put on after dinner. It's like a dessert without actually eating it. So my verdict is that I am not really sure that this is the best hand cream for aging hands; however it sure does a good job!
3. Antipodes Joyful Hand & Body Cream
Antipodes is another natural skincare company; they are the Aesop of New Zealand. Their Joyful Hand & Body Cream contains Avocado Oil, Wild Blackcurrant Berry and Hibiscus Flower. After reading ingredients that sound good enough to eat I picked up a tube on one of my David Jones jaunts. This tube is pretty pricey for hand cream and again I wouldn't be putting it on my body. This tube goes a long way and the cream is surprisingly rich for something that is lighter than both the Aesop and the DECIEM creams.
I love how it smells and I really enjoy applying it. Again, this hand cream isn't greasy feeling. However, I totally believe that feeling greasy is sometimes down to how much product you use. If you feel greasy you need to squeeze out less to use each time. I have hardly any products from New Zealand and this is a great addition to my beauty cabinet. This hand cream is one of my favourites, however it isn't my favourite. The Rind Concentrate still wins hands down.
4. Neutrogena Norwegian Hand Cream
My friend's mum used to use Norwegian Hand Cream; it's a classic. The sell on this cream is that it is clinically proven and concentrated so a little goes a long way. I always liked the light fragrance and I have to say this product is aimed at an older market. It is suitable for sensitive users which is why I was initially drawn to it. It is a great hand cream and more than ample for every day; however if you are like me, you want your hand cream to be bit more luxurious. Hand cream, lip balm, mascara, concealer/foundation and moisturiser are all things I can't live without. I want to be excited to use each product and I expect a bit more where packaging and the experience is concerned. I guess I am wowed by a pretty picture/product then...
5. Thankyou Botanical Patchouli & Vanilla Hand Lotion
Thankyou products are a staple in my house - I have their hand wash in the kitchen and guest bathroom. They are no fuss and are produced for a good cause. The Thankyou brand gives 100% of their profits to helping people in need.
Thankyou products are made in Australia and are free from chemical nasties including SLS, SLES, EDTA and parabens. They don't contain any synthetic fragrances or colours, palm oils or harsh detergents. The other great thing about Thankyou products is that they are PH balanced and suitable for even the most sensitive skin. Which is great news for me and my sensitive skin. Of course they have not been tested on animals too!!
I bought Thankyou Botanical Patchouli & Vanilla Hand Wash first and we use it in the kitchen since it smells quite fresh. It contains natural oils and botanical extracts from Chamomile Flower Extract, Lavender, Eucalyptus, Geranium, Sandalwood, while Patchouli and Vanilla leaves so your hands smell lovely. It cleans your hands without drying them out.
The matching Patchouli & Vanilla Hand Lotion is a lighter alternative to Aesop hand cream. It is made without palm oil and contains Hydrogenated Soybean Oil, Sunflower Seed Oil, Plant Derived Glycerin, Aloe Vera Leaf Juice, Avocado Oil, Rosehip Seed Oil, Cacao Seed Butter, Shea Butter, Coconut Oil, Kakadu Plum Fruit Extract, Lavender Oil, Patchouli Oil, and Vanilla which gives it a lingering scent. It absorbs well so you can get on with what you are doing. Both the hand wash and hand lotion come in a basic large pump bottle which is pretty standard across personal care products.
I have to admit that I buy Thankyou products for the house because they are a cheaper alternative to Aesop. I have Aesop hand wash in my bathroom and the guest bathroom; however I find that it is better to have something cheaper in the kitchen and laundry. I really appreciate the fact that all their proceeds go to charity too.
6. Moreish Hand Cream
Moreish is a natural skincare brand which originates in New Zealand and is owned by API Consumer Brands. As far as I can tell, the brand was discontinued in 2014 and re-released with a different brand story and a wider reach just recently in 2017. I found them in Priceline in Sydney.
Their simple mantra resonated with me - We are what we eat. We are therefore what we apply to our skin. The skin is the body’s largest organ, and whatever goes on the skin is ‘consumed’ by the body, so therefore anything applied to the skin should truly nourish like nutrient-rich food does. Leveraging this simple insight, API repositioned the brand as 'Superfood for Skin'.
Moreish products are made from pure superfoods like organic Argan Oil and New Zealand Avocado, Grape Seed, Kiwifruit and Olive Oil - naturally sourced and intensely rich in vitamins and essential nutrients to hydrate, protect and restore your face and body. The packaging was featured on my go-to packaging design resource too - thedieline.com. Milk was tasked to design a "high-end, feminine ‘department store’ brand that also has credibility as a truly ‘natural’ product. We proposed a stronger brand with luxury colour cues on the pack face, supported by more feminine and evocative imagery on the sides".
I can't really put my finger on how, but as soon as I smell the Moreish Resurgence Hand Cream it smells like dessert to me. It must be the combination of Argan Oil, Shea Butter and Papaya. However, when I have it rubbed in, it no longer smells like that. It is really moisturising without being greasy which is great. Only thing with this is, like the Thankyou Hand Cream, I feel like I have to apply it quite often.
During the evening I usually slather Glycolic Lotion on my face maybe two times a week and I take this to my hands as well. My night time hand routine ends with a really heavy hand cream - I can recommend Burt's Bees Beeswax & Banana Hand Cream because it lasts a long time and smells amazing. It's like a moisture mask for your hands! I don't normally go for products in jars because you stick your hands in them. Just make sure you've washed your hands properly before you reach for this one!