5 Tips for youthful hands
Many of us spend a great deal of time and money on anti-aging products and treatments for our faces. One of the first places to show age, however, is hands. After all, they are constantly exposed to the sun and its photo-aging effects. The skin on our hands is also thinner than that on our faces -- making it more susceptible to the aging process. Here are five easy tips to keep your hands looking youthful and smooth -- and keep the world guessing your age!
Exfoliate your hands.
Just as you exfoliate the skin on your face, you need to remove the top layer of skin on your hands to reveal the fresh skin underneath. At home, you can use microdermabrasion crystals or even 1 teaspoon of sugar combined with coconut oil. While these treatments will not remove brown spots, they will leave your skin looking smoother and softer. The key is to exfoliate on a regular basis.
You can also try a professional chemical peel to exfoliate and remove dark spots; however sometimes these are too harsh for the skin on the backs of our hands. An at-home alternative is to apply fresh lemon juice to your hands for as long as you can tolerate and rinse off. The citric acid in lemon juice is a mild exfoliator.
Use a moisturizer with at least SPF 15 every day, even in the winter time.
If you find a moisturizer with an SPF that you love, use it all the time to replace moisture and protect your hands. Sun exposure damages collagen, which is the building block of skin. Collagen also gives skin that "plump" look. Once collagen is broken down, wrinkles and thin skin appear, so the more we can protect the skin on our hands from the destruction of collagen, the more we can prevent wrinkles.
Pamper your hands.
Wear gloves whenever you do the dishes or otherwise expose your hands to a lot of water. Try using a thick cream like Aquaphor or any oil, such as olive and coconut, under your gloves for a moisture treatment. Also, if you use antioxidant serums on your face, you can use those on your hands as well. Apply these serums at night before moisturizer and during the day before your SPF. You can even use the same hydrating masks on your hands that you use on your face.
Try lasers for brown spots and loose skin.
Age spots, or brown spots, are a telltale sign of aging. To remove brown spots, the best treatments are lasers, such as a Fraxel or YAG laser. Prices range between $500 and $1,000 per treatment. If you have loose skin on your hands, you can try a tightening treatment with a laser such as the TITAN. Skin-tightening treatments help stimulate collagen production, resulting in thicker skin.
Banish veins with sclerotherapy and fat plumping.
As your skin thins, veins in your hands can appear to "bulge" out. In sclerotherapy, a mild irritant is injected into your veins and blocks the blood supply. As a result, the vein shuts down and shrinks. Although this treatment does not have a lot of downtime, it can take a few weeks to see the full results. This treatment is best for small, superficial veins.
For larger veins, a better treatment is to plump the skin around the vein by injecting fat into the hand, thereby creating an illusion of evenness. Doctors use either your own fat (extracted from your thigh or buttocks) or Restylane. Both cost about $300 to $750 per treatment, with one or two treatments required.