In Good Hands: OUAI’s New Collection Made Me Love Washing My Hands

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We’re all washing our hands thoroughly and constantly, right? While I’ve lost track of the months gone by in quarantine, I certainly haven’t let my focus drift from hand hygiene. With endless opportunities and reminders not only to wash my hands, but to sanitize them after coming into contact with anything outside of my home, I have more than just super-clean hands: I have incredibly dry and sad skin. 

Before this pandemic, I had never gone out of my way to seek out a high-quality hand wash, let alone a designated hand lotion or creme. But suddenly, so many moments of my day were consumed by hand washing or disinfecting (and then followed by an interminable dryness I have never experienced before). I had been taking care of my hands from a public health perspective, but was I really taking good care of them? 

Spoiler Alert -- I Wasn’t, But I Am Now

Founded by celebrity hairstylist Jen Atkin, OUAI earned its claim to cult beauty fame by way of its hair care. I remember The OUAI Wave Spray distinctly as being one of the first luxury hair products I purchased -- with the little money I had saved up in high school -- and absolutely loved (and still use to this day). This week, OUAI ventured into new (but uber-relevant) territory with the launch of its Hand Care collection. Much like my first experience with the Wave Spray, OUAI’s Hand Wash, Lotion, and Creme trio leveled up not just my beauty routine, but my perspective on self-care in the current state of our world.

Source: @theouai

Yes, that’s a big statement. But this trio delivers. Prior to trying OUAI’s latest launch, I was largely indifferent about hand care. However, each element of these products won me over, hands down (side note: this, and all future puns, are completely intended). From the sleek and minimalist packaging to the elevated fragrances, OUAI’s collection turned me into a hand care junkie (or maybe just an OUAI superfan).

Show Me The OUAI (To Clean, Smooth Hands)

The first thing I noticed about OUAI’s Hand Wash and Hand Lotion -- apart from the signature sophisticated but simple branding -- was the ample size of the bottles. That, I immediately loved. As a now-convert from bulk natural soap, I value a hand wash that delivers quantity. After trying the wash, I was even more excited about the bottle size -- I wouldn’t have to ration my newfound obsession. And, when I do run out (of either the Wash or Lotion), OUAI conveniently offers refill pouches to help sustain my supply in an environmentally sustainable manner.

I was pleasantly surprised to find that the Hand Wash had exfoliating (and environmentally-friendly) jojoba beads and produced a satisfying, aromatic lather. I was even more excited to learn that the Wash includes natural, moisturizing ingredients like castor, avocado, and rosehip oils. It felt like I was washing my hands with a high-quality cleanser I could use on my face. Infused with OUAI’s signature Dean Street fragrance -- which blends subtle notes of citrus, magnolia, and rose -- the Wash immediately instilled in me a sense of calm. Washing my hands felt like a new intentional moment in which I could locate a little luxury and relaxation. I know, it sounds crazy -- until you try it.

The Hand Wash -- hand for scale -- in all of its 16oz glory

And the scent stays! It’s not just a fleeting feeling of calm -- it persists. Followed by the Hand Lotion with the same Dean Street scent, my hands (and forearms, because I had to spread the love a little) carried the soothing aroma for hours. Aside from its uplifting scent (which honestly could and might just replace my perfume), the Hand Lotion provided immediate moisture via a light formula. As I mentioned in my last review, there’s nothing I hate more than a lotion that leaves a film or feels greasy. This OUAI Hand Lotion does the opposite; rather than sitting on the skin, it absorbs immediately, leaving nothing but its fragrance and hydrated hands.

An Extra Helping Hand: The Créme

The third superstar of OUAI’s Hand Care launch is the Hand Créme, an extra-nourishing balm formulated with coconut oil, shea butter, and murumuru seed butter. OUAI took one look at Purell and said “Honey, you are not going to stand a CHANCE against this moisture!’ Laced with Rue St. Honoré, a fan-favorite floral fragrance that OUAI uses in its hair oil, this créme feels just as luxurious as it smells (and, like the Hand Wash and Lotion, the spa-like scent has staying power).

OUAI’s Hand Care line has, for me, embedded a sense of mindfulness into an otherwise tedious obligation of quarantine. Washing my hands no longer feels like a chore or something I have to obsessively do with a product I could care less about. Instead, it feels intentional and self-soothing -- and it doesn’t hurt that the fragrance of all three products makes my work-from-home routine feel a bit more like a day at the spa.

The lotion and créme rotate between my bathroom and bedside table -- perfect as an evening (or all-day) ritual

5 More Reasons To Love OUAI’s Hand Care Collection:

  • The trio won’t hurt the Earth -- all of the containers are 100% recyclable, and refill packs make it easy to reuse the bottles and pumps as you order your favorites again (and again).
  • All three products are certified vegan and free of sulfates, parabens, gluten, and animal products.
  • Counter appeal: the Hand Wash, Lotion, and Créme look gorgeous on any beauty counter or WFH surface.
  • At such a reasonable price point ($32 for the hand wash and lotion, and $24 for the créme), the collection delivers luxury and value simultaneously.
  • OUAI has its own blog, where the brand posts “How-To" articles on everything from hair growth to DIY spa days.

Take matters into your own hands and try OUAI’s new Hand Care collection for yourself here.

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