“When I’m not at work, I avoid hand sanitizers that contain triclosan because there’s a risk of increasing the growth of multidrug-resistant bacteria—so-called superbugs. Triclosan can also cause significant skin irritation and dryness in many (including me). What do I use instead? Cetaphil bar soap.”
—Michelle Henry, MD, a dermatologist at Laser and Skin Surgery Center of New York
Just stick to regular soap and water—there’s really no need to use antibacterial soap or hand sanitizers because plain old soap does the trick.
“I avoid nail polish. It’s partly because I see a lot of eyelid rashes from polish (the thick skin of the hands often doesn’t react, but this more delicate site can). And it’s partly because I’ve seen too much (mild to horrific infections from nail salons that don’t properly sterilize tools). What I do swear by for my hands: Bloxsun Sun Gloves with UV protection. I wear them in the car so I don’t need to bother with sunscreen. (I hate the tiny sun spots on my hands! I’ve been lasering them off and don’t want them to come back.)”
—Laurel Geraghty, MD, a beauty-editor-turned-dermatologist in Medford, Oregon
Here’s how the toxins in nail polish affect your body.