Statistically speaking, this winter, a certain number of those in happily committed relationships will find themselves jet-setting to a favorite beach destination or snow-capped mountain getaway—only to come face-to-face with a palm-size jewelry box containing a certain life-altering statement accessory. Engagement season is upon us, and should your own celebratory moment arise, you can be sure that your overwhelming bliss will be coupled with a sudden surge of interest in your left hand. Thankfully, it doesn’t take much to whip even the most neglected of fingertips into shape in the service of sending your ring forth with confidence.
As the New York City– and Miami-based dermatologist Fredric Brandt notes, the easiest fix is moisture. “In the winter, dryness from over-washing your hands can become a problem,” says Brandt. To avoid cracked skin, he suggests cleansing them in cool or lukewarm water using a gentle hydrating soap, followed by an application of moisturizer while your hands are still damp. Brandt suggests CeraVe cream for day and overnight for its lipid-replenishing capabilities, while Rescue Beauty Lounge founder Ji Baek swears that “La Mer The Hand Treatment is the best.” Baek’s cream of choice also doubles as a cuticle rescue mask, which she explains, should be done once or twice a week, by squeezing a dot onto the base of the nail bed, rubbing it in, and, once it’s absorbed, gently pushing your cuticles back.
For a major texture overhaul, Brandt recommends using light acid peels and microdermabrasion scrubs to gently resurface your palms. “Most at-home peels are mild enough for hands,” says Brandt, who suggests checking the labeling to ensure that a product is safe before slathering it onto your hands.
A hint of nude nail color, like Rescue Beauty Lounge’s Opaque Nude or Marc Jacobs’s Madame, gives hands a clean finish. But for an even easier DIY polish job, Baek’s recipe for gorgeous “bare” fingers involves priming the nails with a single coat of Rescue Beauty Base Coat Prep, followed by two swipes of traditional base coat, and two coats of a top coat for shine. “I’ve had this as my pedicure since August,” she says of the minimalist look, “and I just keep reapplying.”
Consider that engagement selfie–approved.
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