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Apart from our faces, the skin on our hands is the most exposed to environmental stressors on a daily basis. From handwashing to UVA/UVB rays to daily wear and tear, our hands go through the wringer. The underside (or the palmar surface) is quite thick and resilient, but the upper side (the dorsal surface) is inherently thin and continues to lose collagen and elastin as we age. We also start to see less activity from the sebaceous glands. All this is to say the skin becomes drier and weaker, leading to the eventual development of wrinkles.
In fact, the skin on our hands is so telling that one study found that participants were able to accurately guess the ages of women by looking at unaltered photos of just their hands. According to researchers, "Fullness and a lack of wrinkles and veins characterized the youngest-looking hands." Hence using collagen-boosting, moisturizing products will help reverse translucency and smooth signs of skin degradation. So in addition to lathering up with hand cream and SPF, you might also consider a treatment method that concentrates the best skin-loving ingredients on your digits, minus the mess. Meet hand masks, the at-home, spa-like experience that keeps your hands looking younger longer (and are fun to use).
Below, our favorite hand masks on the market.
Best Overall: Starskin Nourishing Double-Layer Hand Mask Gloves
Consider these sheet masks for your hands. Slip them into these serum-filled mitts and enjoy the nourishing benefits of oils, botanicals, and shea butter, and close the ends with the tabs situated at the wrists to keep the juices enclosed.
Best Patches: BeautyBio Upper Hand Collagen-Infused Hand Patches
These flower-shaped, jelly-like pads adhere to the top of your hands, creating a moist environment that seals and infuses bioactives into the skin. They're also loaded with collagen and amino acids to firm, hyaluronic acid to hydrate, and licorice root to reverse hyperpigmentation.
Best Splurge: Nannette de Gaspé Youth Revealed Hand Mask
Nannette de Gaspé's proprietary waterless masks also come in a hand variation to infuse actives and emollients into the skin by lightly massaging the surface of the product. After one use, users saw a 20% reduction in wrinkles. Masks can be resealed and used up three times.