Earlier this week I wrote a post about making fresh flowers last longer. I included a photo of my hand to show the pollen that gets on your hands if you remove the anthers from the flowers.
When I went back and read that post, I was appalled at the shape of my hands. I knew they felt rough, as they often do in the wintertime, but I didn't realize they looked quite so bad. But quick relief was easy to find. I simply took the kosher salt from my cupboard (plain old Morton's; we always have this on hand):
and mixed it with this dreamy-smelling stuff:
I haven't used Hawaiian Tropic oil on my body for many years, but I just love the way it smells. The coconutty scent transports me to the beach. (If you don't want to buy any suntan oil, you can simply use olive oil.)
Simply squirt some oil into a small bowl of kosher salt. The oil won't melt the salt; it'll just form a paste. You could substitute turbinado sugar for the salt, and if you have lots of cuts and scratches on your hands, you might find that more soothing. I like the salt because sugar tends to attract pesky little ants at our house. This will keep indefinitely (salt is a great preservative); mine lives in a little crock that I found at the thrift store. (If you use salt, be sure to store in a non-porous container.)
To use the salt scrub, simply scoop up a glob and massage into your hands. The oil will feel wonderful and the salt will slough away dead skin cells. Massage as long as you like, then wash your hands with soap and warm water. Dry hands and follow with your favorite hand lotion if you like.
And now for the proof: an actual, unretouched photo of the same hand (minus the pollen, of course) AFTER using the salt scrub:
My hand isn't wet. It's just well-moisturized and no longer chapped. Of course, my hands are nearly 50 years old, so they have lots of little lines and wrinkles. . . but they don't have to be dry and chapped!
Do you have any tips for keeping your skin soft and smooth during the harsh winter?