By Annabel Rivkin

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You beauty!

Annabel Rivkin finds a pair of saviours for sad winter hands

Are your hands just sad, desiccated autumn leaves hanging off the ends of your arms? Both zealously over-washed and casually neglected? Cuticles ragged and angry? Nails bare and bored?

I am looking down as I type and noticing the pale brown freckles — the French call them ‘flowers on the path to the grave’ — and simultaneously reaching for a big, fat tube (it’s lasted me six months) of Malin + Goetz Meadowfoam Oil Balm: a blend of 17 botanical oils and butters that soothe and smooth. When rubbed in, it melts to a kind of dry oil that settles confused skin, raging cuticles and any other parched patches...

But what about glamour? Just a little, manageable, at-home flavour of glamour. Diorific Vernis Golden Nights glittery top coat will transform your everyday, flat nail colour into something dazzling. But I prefer to paint on this gentle glitter alone and let it subtly celebrate every weird day with me. One coat gives an easy shimmer and two coats is positively Christmassy.

Also — and this is crucial if you are as heavy-handed as me — chips don’t show and smudges don’t matter, which makes it stress free. There is simply no room for more worry. But there is space for joy. Delivered, these days, in strange and various ways: a morning walk, clean sheets, a smidge of unexpected good news, the flash of a glittering nail... I’ll take it where I can get it.

Diorific Vernis Golden Nights Collection in Golden Snow, £22.50


Malin + Goetz Meadowfoam Oil Balm, £38