If you’ve ever A: Held someone’s hand, or B: Driven a car, you’d know how critical it is to own a good hand cream. Too greasy, and you’ll leave a slimy trail of destruction in your wake. Not greasy enough, and you may as well not even bother. Hand cream might seem unassuming, but the truth is that it’s the work horse of any solid beauty routine. Your hands do way more than your face, so it makes sense you spoil them with the perfect superlative, right? To keep your mitts in prime condition, we’ve cataloged seven options via their strong points, from thick, buttery textures to those that are superbly scented. See the edit below.
The Underrated Champion: The Body Shop Hemp Hard-Working Hand Protector
The Body Shop used hemp way before it became 2019’s wonder ingredient, and credit must be paid. Hard-working and effective, this hand protector soothes dry, ragged hands and protects them from things like internal heating and repeated washing. It has a light, earthy smell, and is rightfully cruelty free.
The Body Shop Hemp Hand Protector, $20. SHOP NOW
The Object To Be Desired: OFFICINE UNIVERSELLE Buly Pomade Concrete
If there ever was a hand cream that doubles as art, this is it. Luxuriously rich but not slimy, Buly’s hand pomade is a splurge, but oh so worth it. The scent is zingy and green, and works wonderfully massaged into hands and feet.
Officine Universelle Buly Pommade Concrete Hand And Foot Creme, $60. SHOP NOW
The Most Aesthetic: Chanel La CremE Main
A symbol of prestige, Chanel’s egg-shaped, ergonomic hand cream is a skincare designer dream. What’s more, the lotion inside is perfect. Just hydrating enough without being greasy. Pull it out and apply in public as often as possible.
Chanel La Creme Main, $87. SHOP NOW
The Cheap Thrill: Nivea Anti-Age Q10 Hand Cream
A good hand cream need not cost upwards of $20 if you don’t want it to. Nivea understand this, and for that reason you can pick up its anti-ageing option for less than an almond flat white. It’s super light and fluid, meaning grease is not an issue, but as far as hydration goes, it delivers in spades. Best for normal to dry hands.
Nivea Anti-Age Q10 Hand Cream, $6. SHOP NOW
The Least-Glamorous But Hardest Working: Dermal Therapy Hand Balm
Dermal Therapy is all functionality without the bells and whistles, but it won’t let you down. This hand cream is for those who have tried EVERYTHING with no avail. It’s loaded with lanolin and shea butter to properly hydrate, lactic acid to slough off crusty bits, and paraffin to keep the new-found moisture levels locked in. It doesn’t have much of a scent, either.
Dermal Therapy Hand Balm, $7. SHOP NOW
The Heavy Duty Option: L’Occitane Dry Skin Hand Cream With Shea Butter
If you’re craving something really thick and buttery to apply before bed, this option from L’Occitane has your name on it. It has a soft, powdery smell (like baby shampoo), and thanks to the high concentration of shea butter, it’s extremely nourishing. You’ll wake up to perfect cuticles and silky soft mitts. Who doesn’t want that?
L’Occitane Shea Butter Hand Cream, $45. SHOP NOW
The One That Smells Like Expensive Perfume: Le Labo Hand Pomade
If Le Labo fragrance feels like a stretch for your wallet, opt for this hand pomade. Inspired by the forest surrounding the Buddhist temples of Mount Koya (true story), it’s a smoky, hazy treat for your olfactory, and has enough strength to replace your regular perfume. Thanks to shea butter and sweet almond oil, it’s super hydrating and quickly absorbed, too.
Le Labo Hand Pomade, $38. SHOP NOW