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How to keep your hands photo-ready this autumn and winter

We know you love to show off your jewellery, and we certainly love to see you sharing photos of our pieces on social media. However, this is the time of year when we start to have something of a problem taking snaps of rings and bracelets - because our hands get chapped and sore!

We all know the drying effects of cold weather and central heating and we tend to take rectifying measures on our bodies and faces, but hands can get somewhat neglected. Since they regularly get washed in harsh soaps and affected by ice on our windscreens though, they really need additional protection, not less.

Cracked skin will not only be very obvious when you get your phone out to post a picture on Instagram, but it will also be very painful, so it's best to take some preventative measures now if you haven't started suffering - and to combat it if you have.

Here are a few tips on how to keep your hands moisturised and looking great, no matter what winter throws at us.

1. Don't have your water overly hot

When you're freezing, it's very tempting to wash your hands or have a shower in water that's a shade away from scalding. However, try to avoid this as very hot water can strip your skin of essential oils and irritate it further. Keep it warm, but not hot.

2. Swap to moisture-rich products

It's important to replenish moisture to your hands whenever you can, so use a moisturising soap with essential oils instead of just an anti-bacterial agent. Look for ingredients like hemp and oats for maximum benefits - and apply hand lotion afterwards throughout the day too.

3. Try intensive care at night

Night-time is the ideal time to let moisturiser soak in as you're not doing anything, but you don't want it rubbing off on your bedsheets. Instead, put plenty of cream on your hands and then slip some cotton gloves on over the top to ensure it all soaks in. You'll be amazed at the difference by morning.

4. Eat foods that moisturise from the inside

Autumn and winter make us automatically crave stodge and carbohydrates, but it's important to stick to a diet rich in fruit, vegetables and Omega-3 fatty acids if you're going to moisturise from within. Eat olive oil and mackerel and add a rainbow of veg like peppers to dishes whenever you can for maximum skincare and immune benefits.

5. Keep taking your rings off

When you love a new item of jewellery, you tend to want to keep it on until you swap to the next obsession. However, wearing rings in particular overnight can negatively impact your skin. Particles of soap and other irritants can get trapped underneath to attack your skin, plus your hands swell when you get warm - and the results can be nasty red rashes. Instead, take your jewellery off and put it on the nightstand until morning. The same goes for when you wash your hands in the daytime - just make sure you don't forget to put them back on after drying thoroughly at work!

Follow these tips as soon as you can and you should be able to avoid the most serious chapping and ensure you're social media-ready at all times.