Our elbows, eyelids and rear-ends need love too, says skin expert Abigail James. Here's how to treat them
Slathering a moisturiser onto our faces, legs and arms is second nature, but there are some areas which we’re well aware we don’t give the attention required to; a cursory rub of cream over our elbows is the most those pointy bits get and while our under-eyes get a whole lot of love, the same can’t be said for our eyelids.
They are not the only ignored areas of our body we tend to gloss over and that as a result are starved of TLC, as Abigal James explains.
Neglected body part 1: armpits
Why it matters: "We actually treat our armpits pretty harshly!" says Abigail. "Waxing, lasering and regular shaving, often with razors that probably aren't sharp enough, can damage this area further. Skin can become sensitive, dry, flaky, irritated and it’s a tricky area to fix because it’s closed off and regularly produces sweat and hair growth."
What to do: "Using a fresh razor is a great starting point, this should be changed roughly every eight to 12 weeks depending on how often you choose to shave. Nourishing the armpit skin is also key; applying your body moisturiser to the area is a start, choosing a product specifically designed to treat this area is the best option which can help tackle all concerns in one."
What to use: Only Good The Nurturer Body Lotion , £11.99 for 300ml. "It’s good for your skin to avoid high levels of synthetic fragrance and this vegan cream contains zero, plus it's free from parabens, colour and silicone."
Dove's Advanced Care Deodorant with vitamin B3 , £1.89. "Deodorant-wise look for one with skin-loving ingredients such as omega 6 and vitamin B3 ( niacinamide ) to nourish and smooth uneven skin and repair skin barrier."
Our pick: Gillette Venus Comfortglide Spa Breeze , £7.99. The inbuilt soap which sits in pads just above and below the blades gives a smooth and gentle shave that leaves your pits feeling soft without razor burn.
Neglected body part 2: elbows
Why it matters: "The skin on our elbows grows thicker over the years than on the rest of our arms and is prone to dryness, scaliness and can become inflamed and sore," says Abigail. "With age, the skin on our elbows can also begin to sag; when it comes to joints where the skin is moving more, the elastin and collagen fibres lose some of their flex."
What to do: "Using a gentle scrub on the arms and focusing on the elbows will help remove dead skin cells and smooth the skin. Applying a moisturiser specifically to the elbows daily will also be a huge help; often when we are applying a body cream we skip the elbows for some reason, so making a focus of this area when applying is essential."
What to use: Ameliorate Smoothing Body Exfoliant , £17.50. "Bamboo granules and lactic acid combine to provide chemical exfoliation above and below the skin surface, removing dead cells and flakiness for a softer and smoother texture."
Our pick: Aveeno Daily Moisturising Lotion , £7.69. This very subtly scented oatmeal moisturiser moisturises the skin for 24 hours and reinforces the skin barrier to prevent against future damage.
Neglected body part 3: heels
Why it matters: "Our feet are pretty hard-working and often our heels bear the brunt of it," Abigail says. "Physical activity, sports, ill-fitting shoes, walking around barefoot and the general ageing process can all add up to extra pressure on our heals; they can become dry, accumulate hard skin and crack, which can be painful."
What to do: "Using a foot file to buff off dead skin is a great starting point. Do it once every two weeks to start. Afterwards, massage a thick moisturiser into the whole area and leave on for as long as possible, it’s great to put cotton socks on and sleep in them with the moisturiser on."
What to use: Margaret Dabbs Cracked Heel Balm , £18 for 30ml. "As well as her famous foot file , this balm is worth adding to your arsenal. It used anti-bacterial and anti-fungal ingredients and exfoliating salicylic acid to smooth and condition dry skin."
Our pick: Lano Minty Foot & Leg Balm , £10.99. Best known for their lipcare, this is a new addition to the Lano family, with lanolin to deeply hydrate and peppermint to refresh.
Neglected body part 4: eyelids
Why it matters: "The skin on our eyelids is finer than on the rest of our face; we rub our eyes if they are itchy, when we cry, if we are tired and often apply eyeshadows and liners without any thought of caring for this super delicate skin, especially when we vigorously remove our eye makeup," Abigail says. "The skin becomes inflamed, sensitive and over time it can become crepey. Combine that with the general ageing process, loss of elasticity and collagen and it's clear we should be taking a lot more care of our delicate eyelids."
What to do: "Some eye creams are safe enough to apply onto the eyelids. If you’re using a retinol eye product then don’t apply to the lids, keep it to under and crows feet. Reusable cotton pads are a little softer than traditional cotton pads to remove makeup. Choose a delicate eye makeup remover and never use tissues to remover your eye makeup."
What to use: The Body Shop Camomile Gentle Eye Makeup Remover , £7.50. "Suitable for sensitive skin and without added fragrance, colour or alcohol this leaves lashes and lids feeling nourished, not stripped."
Neglected body part 5: our bottoms
"We sit at desks, on public transport and on sofas more now than ever before," says Abigail. |Enclosed in tight-fitting clothes and squished into synthetic fabrics to hold us in, it’s no wonder this area is prone to skin becoming sensitive with rashes and occasional spots forming."
What to do: "Give your bottom some air, at night sleep in cotton shorts or naked rather than pants, use a gentle exfoliant once a week and moisturise your derriere daily."
Our picks: Sol de Janeiro Bum Bum Cream , £18. Sure, you could treat your tush to any moisturiser, by why not one with bum in the title? Everyone in the world should smell this hydrating hero at least once. We guarantee you'll be hooked.
Legology Cellu-Lite Salon Secret for Legs, £62. When it comes to feeling good about our legs and bums we love everything by Legology a natural range of creams and oils specifically tailored to shifting cellulite and giving you smooth skin. This powerful oil smells heavenly of Sicilian Lemons. Pair it with the Lymph Lite Boom Body Brush, £16 or the Circu-Lite Squeeze Therapy cupping tool, £12 for daily bottom-loving ritual.
Abigail James is a beauty expert who has been working with Dove to launch their new Advanced Care deodorant range.