Wednesday, 3 February 2021

The Hand Sanitiser that Won't Destroy Your Hands (and the Moisturiser that Will Fix it if it Does)

COVID-19 is still very much a thing. Especially here in the UK where things seem to be going from bad to worse. Remember when we thought this would be over in just a couple of weeks? Let's all laugh/sob uncontrollably together! I really wanted to start this post off more positively, but considering everything it doesn't really feel possible. So let's just get into it. 

While we're still in the grips of COVID hand sanitiser is still very much part of our daily routines. It's more important than ever to make sure we're doing whatever we can to keep ourselves and others safe, and that includes keeping our hands clean. 

Being a compulsive hand washer and hand sanitiser user  - I've suffered with OCD for most of my adult life - I consider myself something of a hand sanitiser connoisseur, as glib as that is to say. I was carrying around bottles of the stuff long before COVID made that a necessity. And from my research (and by research I mean being myself) I can tell you that hand sanitiser, while VITAL and NECESSARY, can be something of a hand ruiner. While it's great for killing germs and everyone should be carrying round a bottle of it, it doesn't half dry out your paws, especially if you have eczema or drier skin and a tendency to wash your hands a little too much anyway. BUT there is an answer folks! A hand sanitiser that doesn't destroy your hands exists. I've found it and being the giving sort I'm here to tell you about it. 

Forming part of the Natural Defence hand collection, Neal's Yard Organic Defence Hand Spray (£5.75)   contains 70% alcohol and kills 99.9% of bacteria to keep hands clean and fresh while out and about, even though out and about isn't really a thing anymore. 

I first came across the Organic Defence Hand Spray during the Great Hand Sanitiser Shortage of 2020. It popped up on Instagram feed and I, being desperate for hand sanitiser at the time, snapped it up. Since then I've used it pretty much every day and can honestly say it's the best hand sanitiser I've ever used, and like I said I've used a lot!

Available as both a spray and a rub - I've tried both and they're essentially the same thing but with a different bottle top - the Organic Defence Hand Spray is made from naturally-derived ingredients and has a very light liquid texture rather than the gel formulations we're used to. It dries down almost instantly and doesn't leave a sticky residue in its wake. 

It also smells incredible and is formulated with a 'purifying blend of essential oils' including witch hazel, niaouli and lemongrass. 

It's also the most environmentally-friendly hand sanitiser I've come across, with refills that come in glass bottles and a vegan-approved formula, making it more eco-conscious than your average bottle of hand sanitiser. 

The best part of all is that you wouldn't expect what is essentially an alcohol spray to be so kind to the skin, but of all the hand sanitisers I've tried this is the least drying and most gentle on my poor, long suffering mitts. 

Having said that it isn't perfect, it's probably as close to perfect as a hand sanitiser can get while still being effective, but due to its high alcohol content it can still have a drying effect especially if you're not taking care of your hands between uses.  

Enter Aveeno Skin Relief (£5.27, on offer) AKA the best moisturiser I've ever used on my hands. 

Designed to revive very dry skin (ahem), Skin Relief is a fast acting lotion that leaves the skin comfortable and restored. It has a very light weight texture - I've mentioned before how much I hate claggy, greasy hand creams - that absorbs quickly to soothe and nourish very sore, very dry skin. 

Its formulated with shea butter to lock in moisture, while a pre-biotic triple oat complex rebalances the skin's micro-biome, leaving my poor hands moisturised and healthy looking. 

I can honestly say it is the best moisturiser I've ever used. For the first time in a long time my hands are smooth and nourished instead of sore, dry and bleeding. 

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