“Believe me, you can hide a lot of things, but the hands always give it away,”– Joan Rivers
The telltale signs of ageing include crow’s feet and grey hair, but also older looking hands – the kind of hands with skin that just doesn’t bounce back anymore when you pinch it.
Over time the backs of our hands lose volume, making the veins and ligaments appear more prominent. The skin becomes loose and crepey and the harsh effects of the sun cause brown marks and rough spots. However, don’t give up just yet as there are plenty of thing you can do to slow down hand ageing and even reverse the ageing process of your hands.
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Hand Ageing | Top tips for younger-looking hands:
Start looking after your hands sooner rather than later.
Establishing a good protection regime for your hands in your 20s will mean there is less work to do in your 40s. This is the single most important thing you can do to protect your hands from the signs of ageing.
UVA, which is responsible for the majority of the ageing damage to the skin, can penetrate through cloud and glass. Therefore, even on a overcast day, driving is the most common daily activity causing UV damage to the backs of your hands. Ensuring that you wear a high factor, broad spectrum sunscreen of at least SPF 30+ on your hands every day will help minimise the damaging photoageing effects of the sun’s rays.
Make sure you regularly reapply, particularly after washing your hands. Wearing gloves when driving gives extra protection. The Cancer Council make high protection gloves specifically for this purpose, as do Sundriven.
Our hands really need more moisture than any other part of our body because they are exposed to the elements more, all year long, plus we are washing them frequently, which also tends to cause a loss of the skin’s protective oil mantle. Whilst a moisturiser won’t reverse sun damage or create new collagen, it can leave skin looking plumper and more youthful.
Some of the ingredients in moisturising products include shea butter, macadamia nut oil, olive oil, vitamin E, and glycerin. Since all moisturisers work more effectively when applied to skin that is slightly damp, use them after a shower or bath or after washing your hands.
Are there any anti-ageing treatments for hands?
Anti-ageing products for hands
A number of creams and serums are available that contain active ingredients to boost your skin’s natural repair and hydration mechanisms. Epidermal growth factors (plant derived) will promote collagen and elastin growth, leading to thicker more hydrated skin. DNA repair enzymes and Vitamin B3 (niacinamide/nicotinamide) can help reduce the DNA damage caused by UV radiation to the skin. Vitamin A (retinol) will also help to reverse the signs of photoageing in the skin by improving fine lines, hyperpigmentation and scaly patches. Preparations containing hydroquinone, vitamin C or kojic acid will lighten the skin. Some of these ingredients are available in non-prescription cosmeceutical skin care products, whilst others are available on prescription
Chemical Peels for hands
A step up from home care regimes, an effective course of chemoexfoliation to the backs of the hands will quickly lessen age spots and remodel the skin so that it is thicker, firmer and better hydrated. A variety of different agents can be used to achieve different depths of peel. Recent technological advances in the field of chemoexfoliation have produced peels with minimum downtime and excellent results
Dermal Filler for hands
Biostimulant fillers work particularly well in the backs of the hands. These are thicker dermal fillers with a much heavier consistency than you would use for lines on the face. Once injected, the filler is massaged across the back of the hand and “fanned out” to plump up and fill in the entire area. The treatment takes less than 20 minutes, and results are visible in a couple of weeks. Initially, results can last from one to two years, longer than in the face, because the back of the hand has fewer muscles and less muscle activity capable of breaking down the filler. There is also evidence the injections stimulate the body’s own production of collagen and elastin, so as time goes on you may need less filler less often to maintain the youthful look.