There’s a famous scene in Gone with the Wind in which Scarlett O’Hara makes a dress out of her mom’s old drapes and goes into Atlanta to sweet-talk (seduce) Rhett Butler into giving her $300 to pay the taxes on Tara. He falls for it until (dun dun DUN) he grabs her hands. "What have you been doing with your hands? You've been working with them like a field hand!" he exclaims. You see, much like Shakira’s hips, hands don’t lie.
If you don't want your hands to betray your skin sins, it's time to get proactive. "For a lot of people, there’s a disconnect between the hands and the face, because people usually take care of their faces and they’re not doing so with their hands," says Fredric Brandt, MD, a New York City- and Miami-based dermatologist to many celebrities, including Stephanie Seymour and Madonna. "People don’t pay attention to [them], and they get to that critical point where they look bad."
Chances are, you’re already using a moisturizing hand lotion pretty regularly, particularly in the winter. But, with a few tweaks, you can turn that haphazard, one-minute ritual into a targeted prevention regimen. According to Dr. Brandt, now’s the time to start. "Prevention should start when you’re very young, in your 20s," he says.
You can use the same products on your hands that you do on your face. Deborah Lippmann, nail guru extraordinaire, told me something a few years ago that blew my mind. If she dispenses too much face product, she rubs the extra onto the backs of her hands. That is a very "duh" sort of beauty hack, but it had never occurred to me — now I do it religiously.