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Kiss, Marry, Kill: A Review of Handcreams for Knitters

April 26, 2010

I would like to tell you that I am a graceful animal. I do dance-classes. I promote body consciousness and spatial awareness. To admit even small instances of works against the aestheitic I’m working towards.

But I feel it’s only fair to give credit to the recent accident that’s prompted me to blog this.

The friction burn and the symmetrical set of burns on my bottom are new as of yesterday. I missed the footing on the top step and fell arse-first down the stairs. I proceeded to make loud, hurt animal noises which greatly distressed the gentleman caller in my bedroom. Luckily, with a mixture of tea and sympathetic cuddling, I was quickly restored to health.

But the boo-boo on my hands has brought me back to a topic that I think is important to knitters: hand cream. I’ve been meaning to blog about it since forever, but the arse-bruising/hand-burning brought it back to my head. Thanks, gravity!

Hand massage is a big part of my knitting. I suffer horrible joint pain and any long stretch of knitting can really hurt. Like any endurance sport, knitting requires preparation if you intend to avoid injury. These knitter’s exercises are a god-send to me. The massage section of this regimen is so much nicer with a good cream. I’ve picked three of the ones I’ve used out at random and I’m ranking them using the time-tested kiss/marry/kill formula.

Astral

My hand holding a little pot of Astral.

How could I refuse the moisturiser chosen by Joanna Lumley? This lovely little tub markets for about £1 and I LOVE it. The lovely, naked skin smell suggests innocent jocks being talced in a changing room. Like talc, and jocks, Astral is suitable for use all over the body. It’s now my regular moisturiser.

The only cons are a) I can’t use it on my lips and b) that lovely, slightly fetish-y, clean-body smell overwhelms perfume, unless you’ve got the bottle with you to top up. I don’t have room for perfume in my knitting bag, so this is a straight-up choice between Issey Miyake’s L’eau d’Issey or the scent of slightly jaded innocence. A difficult decision.

Atrixo

My hand holding a little pot of Atrixo.

I want to like Atrixo. It cost me £2 or so, at least double the price of the other products. When you are unemployed, there’s little you won’t do to avoid buyer’s guilt.

On the plus side, Atrixo has an EXCITING texture. It’s lumpy and silky and shiny like something made by aliens. As you rub it in, you get a definite feel of ‘made in a lab so therefore effective.’ You can feel the lab-coats in the formula.

Sadly, this is the only positive quality. My hands were left feeling oily and I smelled of floral floor-cleaner. Save your money: you can make a similar product by mixing hair conditioner, Zolflora and butter.

Rosebalm

Hand cream for knitters made by monks

This tiny, badly photographed, pot cost £1.20. Cisterian monks mix rose oil, olive oil and beeswax into lovely little pots, then I buy it from my local monastery. It is magical. Let me list its virtues.

  1. Monks make it.
  2. With 3 ingredients, all of which I recognise
  3. It smells of angels
  4. Low air miles/good ecology blah blah blah
  5. Freaking *monks*!

It is perhaps a little too oily for moisturising all of my face. But to be honest, when I do ever moisturise more than my lips and problem spots?

This stuff works my hands, nails, lips and body. I dab it on my pulse points and collar bone as a perfume. The small amount of residue doesn’t mar my knitting, just delicately scents it. And, as I am a complete natural-substance-ophile, I can also use it to treat my wood/bamboo needles. I love this stuff *too much*.

This review has an easy conclusion. Kill the Atrixo. Quickly. I’d have hot, sleazy, meaningless kisses with Astral (I’d have it often) and marry the unfortunately celibate monks’ balm.

That’s it for today. Tomorrow: pictures of the knitted underpants.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. April 27, 2010 9:57 pm

    Well, I like to knit too. Not very proficient at it though I do love it! I never even knew they made hand creams for these kinds of projects, this is new to me. These are for the cramps and such from the knitting and crocheting? I do agree you underwear need a little work though, would work well for a stripper….easy access and all. I am always making my own patterns, especially for crochet, which I know more about. But patterns are easy no matter the venue, check out sewing patterns for the measurements and apply them to knitting. Usually works for me.

    • April 28, 2010 9:10 am

      They’re just general skin creams, but using them for massage REALLY helps with cramps for me. Your mileage may vary though. Male strippers were definitely part of the inspiration for the pants.

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