I’m willing to bet this past year has involved more hand washing and hand sanitizing than most if not all the years that preceded it. Hand washing is something we all should do consistently throughout the day, before preparing food and after using the restroom. Whether it’s with your favorite aromatic foaming hand soap, a rugged antibacterial hand soap, your tried and true hand soap brand or a quick swipe of hand sanitizer — keeping your hands clean is one of the best ways to avoid illness. However, many of these germ-killing formulas contain ingredients that dry out your skin, especially when used consistently. That’s where the best hand lotions come in.
Hand lotion is a necessity, especially if you’ve got a dryer skin type or live in a dry climate that never ceases to suck the moisture out of your skin’s protective barrier. Having a small, portable hand lotion in your briefcase, backpack or on your desk is a great way to ensure you’re always within reach of a moisturizing refresh. You can avoid that dry hand feeling, keep your knuckles from cracking and even help wounds heal faster.
Hand lotion, unlike moisturizers for your face or other sensitive parts of the body, can also contain heavier moisturizing ingredients like jojoba oil without irritating skin. Since you don’t need to worry about clogging pores or wearing a heavy residue for the rest of the day, many of them are formulated heavy so your hands stay moisturized. I’ve gathered a bunch of the best hand lotions, in my opinion, for keeping at home or on-the-go, so your hand skin is never left dying of thirst with no hydration in sight.
1. Gold Bond Ultimate Intensive Hand Cream
Gold Bond is one of my favorite lotion brands and this hand cream is lightweight, non-greasy, absorbs quickly while still hydrating your skin’s protective moisture barrier. It’s been dermatologist tested and deemed hypoallergenic, and it’s formulated to last through hand washing. It contains seven intense moisturizers including vitamins B, C & E, and it penetrates through ten surface layers of the skin for deep hydration. It’s got a fresh, light scent that’s not too overpowering, and the hydration is designed to last for 24 hours.
2. Aveeno Skin Relief Moisture Hand Cream
This hand lotion from Aveeno is also designed to moisturize skin for 24 hours after application, and is formulated with oatmeal and other rich emollients for relief from dryness. It helps your hands form a protective barrier against the elements and leaves them soft and smooth. It’s designed to absorb quickly, be non-greasy, and it’s steroid- and fragrance-free to avoid irritation. It’s designed to be used as needed and the 3.5oz. container is super portable.
3. Eucerin Advanced Repair Hand Cream
To be honest, I had a hard time not putting Eucerin in first or second place, because they also make a great hand lotion. Their formula doesn’t absorb as quickly as the Aveeno or Gold Bond lotions do, but if you’ve got super dry skin they’re an excellent option. Their hand cream is formulated with ceramide-3 and other natural moisturizers including shea butter. The lotion is free of dyes and fragrances and is designed to leave your hands smoother after just one application.
4. L’Occitan Butter Hand Cream
BEST LUXE PICK
This is definitely more a luxurious hand lotion pick, but it’s a great formula that is worth the money if you’ve got it to spend. It’s a creamy balm made with 20% shea butter that makes it super rich. It also contains honey, almond extracts and coconut oil for an effective formula that’s on the heavier side but deeply moisturizing. It leaves hands softer and smoother with no oily traces, and you can use it as often as you need.
5. Neutrogena Hydro Boost Gel Hand Cream
This cooling gel hand cream from Neutrogena takes a slightly different approach to moisturizing with hyaluronic acid, a common skincare ingredient that pulls your skin’s moisture to the surface for a visibly smoother and plumper complexion. The formula is super lightweight and formulated to be non-greasy. It’s paraben-free and perfectly suited for daily use. The 3 oz. size is also TSA-compliant so you can travel with it if you’re going to a particularly dry destination.
6. Dove DermaSeries Fragrance-Free Hand Cream
BEST FOR DRY SKIN
Dove’s DermaSeries is all about bringing expert care for all types of skin to your fingertips, including super dry skin. This hand cream is designed for psoriasis and eczema-prone skin, and contains a blend of AminoSilk Complex moisturizers that rebuild the skin’s natural barrier. This hand cream is formulated to soothe dry, cracked hands and be fast-absorbing so you get the quick relief you need. It’s also hypoallergenic, free of artificial fragrance and non-sticky.
7. Neutrogena Norwegian Moisturizing Hand Cream
BEST FOR TRAVEL
This rich, effective hand cream is formulated to last you, a little bit goes a long way. Each 2 oz. pack contains enough for 200 applications, and is formulated with highly concentrated levels of glycerin for softer and smoother skin. This Norwegian formula is made fragrance-free and designed to help prevent dry skin when used overnight. This pack of six 2 oz. containers will last you a while, and each one is super small and portable making this a great option for travel.
8. Mario Badescu Rose Hand Cream
BEST FOR ALL SKIN TYPES
Mario Bedescu’s whole line of products is a favorite amongst SPY Editors for the high-quality ingredients and affordable formulas they create. This hand cream is fortified with rose, making it deliciously scented and fast-absorbing as well. It moisturizes skin using a combination of oils and vitamins, and helps to reduce the look and feel of dry lines, cracks, etc.
9. Burt’s Bees Ultimate Care Hand Cream With Baobab Oil
BEST FOR SENSITIVE SKIN
Burt’s Bees is all about natural formulas designed to not irritate sensitive skin. This one is 98.9% natural, to be exact, and is made with naturally moisturizing ingredients and baobab oil that gently exfoliates the skin so new, more hydrated layers can emerge. The formula contains green tea extract, watermelon seed oil and pumpkin oil as well for smooth skin. This hand cream is also unscented, non-greasy and fragrance-free as well.
10. Vaseline Healthy Hand & Nail Conditioning Lotion
Vaseline is another top-notch brand in the moisturizer, cream and lotion category. This hand cream contains micro droplets of Vaseline jelly that help relieve those dry patches on the tops of hands and in between knuckles. This lotion is also designed to help smooth out dry, cracked nail beds and cuticles for a well-moisturized hand from wrist to fingertip. It’s also formulated to help strengthen nails in as little as two weeks and to help prevent nails from chipping and breaking.
11. J.R. Watkins Natural Moisturizing Hand Cream
This hand cream from J.R. Watkins smells delicious and has a lemon cream scent you’ll want on your hands all day. The formula is made with all sorts of hydrating ingredients like shea butter, cocoa butter, avocado oil and more. The brand uses natural ingredients from sustainable sources and keep sensitive skin in mind during the process. This hand cream is 98% natural, free from harmful junk ingredients and is cruelty-free.