HAND & NAIL CARE: Extra Hand Washing Edition

by - March 20, 2020

Hey guys! I hope everyone is keeping safe and happy during this super surreal time in our lives. Personally, I'm social distancing like I've been doing it my whole life (I have) and, though I'm actually genuinely terrible at not touching my face, I am listening to the advice to increase the frequency with which I wash my hands and it got me thinking. I'm pretty much obsessed with taking care of my hand, although, if we're being real transparent, I do pamper the one I take close up pictures of at least once a week a lot more than what I think of as my garbage hand. Anyway, the other day when my mom, who is immunocompromised and has to be extra diligent right now, told me that she's washing her hands so much that they feel like they're going to fall off from the dryness, I figured I'd share the advice here on the blog that I shared with her.

So, if you're interested in seeing how I personally am caring for my hands while also washing like... well, like we're in the midst of a pandemic, quite frankly, keep reading!

I've seen a lot of people rolling their eyes at the reminders to wash your hands, but I think that what a lot of those people aren't recognizing is that this isn't your usual wash your hands after you use the washroom or while you're cooking or after you give your dog all the adorable schritchens, etc. Wash your hands more often than usual, be diligent, and do a thorough job. Anyway, I'm not a huge fan of hand sanitizer, so I don't use it and just make sure I'm regularly hand washing, and there's only one soap that I reach for. Period.

Literally, if you have access to Live Clean Hand Soap, I highly recommend picking some up and putting it in your bathroom, kitchen, and wherever else you wash your hands, because it is definitely the most gentle hand soap that I've ever used - and for years now, literally the only one I use. I personally restocked a little bit (don't worry, I haven't gone mad with stockpiling power), enough to be sure that I have enough in my house to keep my hands scrubbed up for quite a while.

Every single time I wash my hands, I follow with hand cream. This is pretty common for me in normal, every day life as well, but because I'm washing my hands more frequently now I'm also being more diligent about replenishing that moisture immediately after I wash my hands. And other times. There are three hand creams that I've been using most consistently and all basically serve different purposes for me.

Ultimately, the CeraVe Moisturizing Cream* is legit my favorite hand and body moisturizer of all time. Along with having those essential ceramides that support a healthy skin barrier, this is just a gorgeous, rich and super moisturizing cream that I can always count on immediately soothe that feeling of dryness and add lasting moisture to the skin. I actually apply a pretty generous amount of this cream right before bed and I really find that it helps keep my hand feeling soft a moisturized. For daytime application though, when I need a slightly faster sinking in option, I always reach for the NIVEA Q10 Anti-Age Hand Cream. Though not as rich, it still adds a significant boost of moisture and sinks in more quickly so that I can still get get shit done without feeling like I'm leaving hand cream residue everywhere. Though not as much of a workhorse and more of a sensory experience, I've also been reaching for the Pure Anada Shea Hand Cream, which is one of those really rich hand creams that you can just continue to work into your hands for more of a massage. It's definitely not one that I can put on before sitting down at my computer or trying to get things done, because it's a little bit more oily, but it's great to just sort of work into my hands when I'm curled up in front of the TV and just hanging out. Finally, if the dryness has moved into serious irritation or chapped skin, I highly recommend grabbing for a tube of Aquafor Healing Ointment, which always really helps me if I end up with skin that needs that extra hit of help. 

Honestly, whatever hand cream you prefer, I definitely highly recommend reaching for it often, especially after you wash your hands, to keep from having that uncomfortable, overly dry feeling that consistent hand washing can cause.


I'm basically a cuticle oil junkie at this point and not a lot has changed when it comes to frequency with which I apply it or the types of oils I reach for. I do find, however, that when my hands start to get dry the first place that I really see and feel it is in my cuticles, so I'm being extra mindful at the moment about paying special attention to that area - and it also helps to keep your nails hydrated and flexible so that they're less likely to start cracking and breaking.

For me, Cuter Cuticles products are a staple in my life. Between their Barrier Butter and their tubes of rollerball Cuticle Oil, as well as their Cuticle Care Cream (not pictured) I have products from the Canadian indie brand literally everywhere that I am. In my purse, on my nightstand, on my desk, on my coffee table (I actually have all three types of products on my coffee table basically at all times), I'm basically fully stocked and consistently in use of products from the brand and I highly recommend them whenever anyone asks.

If you're looking for something that you can quickly grab from the grocery or drugstore, I think the Catrice Lip Oil with Sweet Almond Oil*, though not intended for this use, is a seriously solid cuticle oil option and the tiny size of the dropper makes it really easy to apply to the nails. And if all else fails, or you just want to keep it simple, I really think that you can't go wrong with straight up Jojoba Oil. You could add it to a dropper bottle, an empty rollerball, or a click brush applicator and just whack it on your nails whenever the mood hits. It's a little bit messier, but it gets the job done in a pinch. 

If I have one more tip for you guys about protecting your hands with more frequent hand washing - more specifically, your nails - it's to keep them polished consistently. If you have gel polish and a lamp, now might be the time to lean into that for a longer lasting polish application, but if you only have regular polish I recommend using some of this socially distanced time to do a solid application of at least two coats of colour along with a strong, fairly thick top coat. For me, keeping my nails polished with enough polish and top coat that I'm not dealing with chipping that peels my nails has been the difference between having strong, long nails and having chipped, nubby ones. So, keep it polished!

I've seen some really condescending responses to all the talk about washing your hands right now from people who roll their eyes and declare that people are gross if they don't already wash their hands, but the reality is that we SHOULD be washing our hands more frequently right now, not just after we got to the washroom or are preparing food. Wash thoroughly and effectively in order to try and reduce the spread of COVID19, but also take care of the skin of your hands and try yo replenish that moisture and protect your skin's barrier.

I hope everyone is staying tucked away and healthy as best they can right now - and I am FULLY open to bingeable TV show suggestions in the comments below!

Thanks for reading!

You May Also Like