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Hands up for silky mitts
Clarins Hand and Nail Treatment Cream
Member Name: Dryad
Clarins Hand and Nail Treatment Cream
Advantages: A pleasant to use product with a sound ethical basis to the company. No animal testing
Disadvantages: For me a bit expensive for everyday use, other products with similar formulations available for less
They use no animal products in their ranges, and say that "sustainable plants are at the heart of the Clarins brand", in 1987 they were the first French company to give up animal testing which is a huge feather in their cap.
Clarins has a very nice website which gives lots of details of their approach, plus the usual gift ideas, products to purchase etc. The wording of the blurb can seem a bit overly 'worthy' for example "by creating charitable programmes that advance social responsibility, environmental preservation, and medical research, Clarins has taken leadership in setting an example for others to follow". However I've been pretty much sucked in by it, overly worthy or not, and look at Clarins as a brand in a more positive light for visiting the site. The address of the site if you are interested is: http://uk.clarins.com. I have mentioned the above (and some other details) in another Clarins review, but as you or non Dooyoo members may not have read my previous reviews I thought it was worth repeating some of the things 'wot I wrote' where relevant.
The packaging is the standard Clarins white and red, boxed with a usage leaflet in many different languages. The tube itself is an easy to use basic recyclable plastic tube with an ergonomic fat screw top lid. As I've mentioned in another Clarins review what I like about this basic packaging is that when you can't whack any more product out of the tube you can just cut it open and scoop out any remaining product collected on the 'ledge' around the dispensing area, and any nestled in corners, or coating the inside of the tube. Because of the creamy texture of this 'treatment' you do get little blobs remaining in the nooks and crannies so you can get enough for a few extra uses by doing this.
The product has a classically Clarins scent, subtly fragrant with a fresh feel to it. It has a lovely light cream consistency, and is soft white in colour. It sinks into the skin with very little 'rubbing in'. It really does feel as if it is getting into the lower levels of the skin where it will do most good rather than just sitting on top, and I'm surprised how hydrating this light cream is. Because it sinks in nice and deeply the skin feels plumped up from within and retains that feeling for longer than many creams are able to achieve. my hands still feel comfortable after washing a couple of times. Though for an instant surge of intense moisture on parched hands I still find other heavier creams more effective (such as L'occitane shea butter hand cream, my favourite). This cream seems to be more about preserving and nurturing a youthful plump look to the skin (which is fine by me) than ensuring the comfort of particularly dry skin, or treating very rough dry skin.
This cream is a fabulous maintenance and moisturising cream for 'normal' skin but if you are looking for more of a 'rescue' treatment for hard working hands or very dry skin you would be better looking for a heavier non perfumed moisturising product containing urea and other heavier moisturising ingredients (like shea butter) such as E45, Eucrin and L'occitane shea butter hand cream, amongst others.
While checking ingredients in this product I noticed that it contains "Condurango Bark extract: astringent" which "helps prevent damp palms" (taken from Clarins website). If you hate the moist even slippery feeling that some hand creams can leave on your palms, making using a pen, keyboard or doing anything else that requires non slipperyness difficult then this would be ideal for you. Personally I don't tend to get moist palms anyway as my hands border on overly dry (I have a touch of eczema, much milder than my sis).
As with all hand creams other than the cheapest simple moisturisers I apply to the backs of my hands and rub it in by rubbing the backs together. As I've mentioned in other hand cream reviews it's a bit of a fiddle but helps more expensive products target the place where they will be of most use. As this is a hand and nail treatment once most of the product has sunk in I use my finger tips to massage the residue around the cuticles and over nails. My cuticles are kept in nice condition and don't peel, tear, or get those little skin tags which can pull painfully. However my cuticles have never been much of a problem area anyway. I know many people may think 'cuticles' Pah! Life's too short!' and I have to admit I would normally be one of them. Since seeing the trouble my sister has had with hers though, tearing and subsequently developing painful infections, and generally being rough and peely (she is uber hygienic but is prone to skin issues partly due to her eczema) I am inclined to take at least some care over mine.
I had high hopes for the nail strengthening qualities of this product as it contains something you do not often see in cheaper products that claim the same results. They usually contain B vitamins and Keratin as their nail treatment components, but this baby hits us with Myrrh extract which gives the nails a lovely natural strengthening/conditioning bath. However my nails are horribly weak and always have been, they do look nice while using this product and are very slightly less likely to peel, but they remain soft and papery and aren't able to grow longer than they normally do (which isn't very long at all) no matter how long I use this product.
Your palms should receive enough moisture by applying in this way, but if not perhaps you could use a cheap moisturising hand cream for comfort in between uses of the Clarins product, which will help the more expensive product go further, of course there's nothing stopping you using the Clarins product throughout the day if you wish. I use other hand cream regularly during day and only use the Clarins in the evening, and morning after I have showered.
I feel it's a shame that this cream doesn't contain a sun screen, as it has some ingredients which target 'age spots', specifically Japanese Mulberry extract, the same as in its 'Age Protect' cream. Because the main cause of age related discolouration is sun exposure it would have seemed logical to back up the discolouration 'treatment' with sun protection. As science backs up it isn't good to be too overly zealous about sun protection, as you need some exposure for you body to be able to manufacture certain vitamins (such as vitamin D), moderation is the key. However I do think the addition of a factor 15 or 20 (minimum) would have been beneficial in this case. If you do like to use sun protection you can of course add your own afterwards, if you like the texture of this cream and find the myrrh extract leaves your nails in good condition this would be a good option to go for.
Another good product from Clarins, having a choice of textures and effects is always a good thing.
Clarins seem to fit a niche of intermediate/high pricing, they are not close in price to supermarket brands on the lower scale, nor are they up there with Crem da la Mere, and Perricone etc in the upper strata
The Clarins website and Boots (comes with 72 advantage points) sell this for £18 per 100ml
Feel unique £16.50 per 100ml with free postage and packaging at the moment
CheapSmells £13.95 per 100ml with free delivery
Summary: A nice product that suits many people.
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