Let's have a very big hand for manicures

Winter is tough on hands and nails so give them special care

Sue Conley

The other day I got into a taxi heading for town; I felt uncomfortable because I never take cabs during the day.

The taxi man compounded my chagrin by asking "Goin' shoppin'?" which made me feel frivolous. The thing was, I was going to get my nails done. I love a good manicure, but I also enjoy taking care of business at home. This is a mixed bag of products, all doing things for your hands.

NEOSTRATA Hand and Nail Cream, €28 * * * *

I keep hand creams next to my laptop and I like to give my hands a treat during breaks but, the thing is, if it takes forever for the cream to absorb, then my break may extend whether I want it to or not. NeoStrata's offering feels incredibly good on my hands and nails, and almost absorbs as quickly as I need it to.

DR HAUSCHKA Neem Nail Oil, €26 * * *

My cuticles are fairly stubborn and they grow up into the nail bed if I'm not careful. Also kept near the computer is the good doctor's treatment. The pen-like object dispenses the oil. It's pretty good for pushing back the cuticle, but the oil doesn't flow as well as I'd like.

LUSH Lemony Flutter Cuticle Cream, €9.45 * * * *

Love this, and not just because it smells delicious. The cream is rich and, with regular use, keeps nasty hangnails at bay. It does take a while to absorb, though.

LACURA Nail Files, Glass and Ceramic, €2.99 * * * *

Rough nail files feel like they're chewing at my nails, while really smooth ones are useless, and the metal ones are terrifying. Aldi's signature brand has created two versions of filing perfection. Both are great, gently shaping the nail, and feel like they will last forever.

BARBARA DALY FOR TESCO Goodbye Yellow Nail Treatment, €4.90 * * *

If you have discoloured nails, this is for you, but don't layer it on, because it'll make it look like you've clawed up Everest without gloves. In short, it makes you nails almost too white.