We ask gardeners for their favorite hand creams. Here are 10 of their favorites, from inexpensive farm staple Bag Balm to fancy French imported creams.
Most plant lovers do their gardening bare-handed, even though the same sun, water, and earth that nurture gardens can wreak havoc on skin. “I like to feel my hands in the soil,” says Pacific Northwest gardener Tom Fischer, author of Perennial Companions (Timber Press), “and if I'm weeding—a frequent activity—it's essential to feel the culprit's roots, so that I can remove as much of the plant as possible.” Fortunately, help is within reach.
Here are 10 restorative balms preferred by some of our favorite gardeners:
“I sometimes make my own scrubs with Dead Sea salt. But for other times, Wild Carrot Herbals Vanilla Bean Skin Cream and Alaffia Cocoa Butter Intensive Body Lotion-Vanilla Mocha are my two favorites.” — Lauren Hall-Behrens, owner of Lilyvilla Gardens design studio
“SwissJust Juniper Cream is great for muscle relaxation, so I use it before and after gardening, as well as when I'm training for triathlons. Plus, it smells amazing, so people in the locker room are always asking about it.” —Tracy DiSabato-Aust, garden designer, champion triathlete, and author of The Well-Tended Perennial Garden (Timber Press)
“They may not be fancy, but I like Eucerin Daily Skin Balance and Bag Balm, which I use not only on my own skin but on my dogs and horses, and on my chickens, whose combs can get frostbite in the winter. It's one of those things that stays in my bathroom, my kitchen, and in my tack room.” —Sheila Bridges, interior designer