Hello lovelies. How are we all? I have spent my evening doing some lovely Christmas nails for my friend, I am definitely loving the Christmas nail art at the moment!
This weeks #BritishBloggerSelection theme is skincare, so to keep it nail related I have decided to do a post on how I care for my hands and cuticles.
I believe that taking good care of your hands is paramount to having nice nails. You can paint you nails as nicely and neatly as you like, but if you have dry and broken skin on your fingers, its never going to look as nice. So I am going to share with you a few of the products I use to keep my hands in good condition.
This is quite a long one so read on after the jump :).
The first product I am going to show you is cuticle remover. This is not something I personally use that often, I am lucky in this department as I naturally have very little cuticle anyway. However if I am doing someone else's nails this is a product I nearly always use. This will soften the cuticles and help to remove any excess skin from the nail plate, making them easier to push back.
The bottle I own is called Strictly Professional Creamy Cuticle Remover. This is the only bottle I have ever owned, I got it in a set a while back and have barely made a dent in it, you don't have to use much. It seems to do its job, but as I haven't used any other cuticle removing products I can't really compare it to anything. One thing you do need to remember with cuticle removers is that you need to rinse it off with water after use as they can irritate the skin if you leave them on for too long.
The next things I have to show you are cuticle pushers and cuticle nippers. Again, since I have minimal cuticle I find I don't have to use these very often, but are still something worth having.
The cuticle pusher is on the right. I have a metal one, but you can get plastic/rubber ones and some people also use orange sticks, its all down to personal preference. I mostly use the rounded end to gently push back the cuticles after I have applied the cuticle remover. You need to make sure you do this gently, otherwise you can cause damage to your nails. The other end is a cuticle knife, which I use less often. You can use this to scrape off any excess skin from the nail plate, you need to take extra care with this and keep it parallel to the nail whilst using it. It is quite sharp so you don't want to scratch up your nails!
On the left are cuticle nippers. Some people use these to cut off all their cuticles, this is something I definitely do not recommend! Your cuticle is there for a reason, it acts like a seal around your nail and stops germs and bacteria getting under the skin. Removing the cuticle breaks the seal meaning you can get infections, which will not only be painful but look gross too. However when used correctly, cuticle nippers can be very handy. I use them to nip off any bits of dead skin and hang nails. Be careful not to tear the skin off as this will make it sore, make the nippers do the work and cut off the dead skin, not tear.
Next up we have my baby, Burt's Bees Lemon Butter Cuticle Cream. I think this is the most important step when it comes to caring for you cuticles; moisture! Anybody who wants nice nails/hands will definitely need to purchase some kind of cuticle cream or oil. These will keep your cuticles moist and stop the dreaded dry skin! Healthier cuticles will also mean healthier nails, nails can also get dry and brittle and start to peel. Keeping your nails moisturised will help to keep peeling at bay and make your nails stronger (although I would definitely recommend using some kind of strengthener along with this). I apply this as often as I can, to keep my cuticles in tip top condition.
Finally we have hand creams. These are fairly self explanatory, they keep the skin on the rest of your hands soft and smooth and these are the three I have on the go at the moment.
I always have a hand cream on me in my bag, at the moment I have Garnier Intensive 7 Days Nourishing Hand Cream (left) as my on the go hand cream. This one is quite fast absorbing which is important when I am out doing things and I feel that it does well on the moisture front.
In the middle we have Body Shop Hemp Hand Protector. This has a very thick consistency and sort of feels like it if forming a protective layer over your hands (hence it being a 'hand protector'). I think this is a great one for winter, I like to apply it in the morning before I have to get in my cold car to drive to work. I really don't like the smell of this one though.
The one on the right is Anatomicals Help The Paw Vitamin Rich Hand Cream. I got this one in a beauty subscription box. I feel it is quite good on the moisture front but is very greasy and slow to absorb so I don't use this very often, occasionally before bed. I don't think I will be repurchasing this one.
So we are finally at the end of this lengthy post, I hope this has been helpful to some of you. I'm not an expert, but this is just what I have learnt from my own experiences. If you have any questions feel free to get in contact with me :).
Thanks for looking.