Theallamenta asked about my cuticle care recently, and I thought discussing that would fit into my Skin Care Sunday series—cuticles are a kind of skin, right?
As I do with my face, I tend to switch up my hand care routine regularly as I come across new things to try (or rediscover old ones), so what I'm sharing today is just what I'm using now. I'm only going to detail the specialized products I use only on my cuticles, but know that I also use a lot of hand lotion which of course gets rubbed into my cuticles as well. I'm not especially particular about the brands of lotion, just about using it before I head out for the day (that one has SPF 30), every time I wash my hands, and before bed. Here's what I use on my cuticles in addition to all the lotion:
I use the Sally Hansen Instant Cuticle Remover once a week. I apply it around my cuticles—it's in a squeeze bottle and is fairly thick so it's easy to put it where I want it—then wait a minute or so (I know the bottle says 15 seconds, but my cuticles seem to need a bit longer) before taking a metal cuticle pusher and gently scraping off any excess cuticle on my nail surface and pushing back what's left. (I used to push with my thumbnails but am trying very hard to stop using them as tools so now use the metal tool instead.)
I use the Mango Mend as many times a day as I remember, usually two or three at least, rubbing it into my cuticles until it's absorbed. When Sally Beauty had the small tubes of it, I bought a bunch and keep one in my purse and one in my desk (and the big tub in my bathroom) so it's never far from me.
The Poshe Cuticle Care is the most recent addition to my routine; I've been using that every night just before bed (the tube lives on my nightstand) for a few months now, applying just like the Mango Mend. I think the AHA in it is what's finally gotten the hard skin at the corners of some of my nails to behave; I'm no longer nearly as tempted to attack those areas with a file (or, I admit, my teeth, which has happened in the past) as I was before I started using this.
You may notice there's no cuticle oil here. I have plenty, and have used it in the past, but my cuticles seem to respond better to lotions and balms than oils, so that's what I've been focusing on using. (The Mango Mend is made with a lot of different oils, but somehow in the balm formula they work for me.) I know a lot of people do great with oils; I just don't seem to be one of them.