Here in Central Illinois, it feels like winter has finally settled in for the season. It was about a week ago that we had freezing rain coupled with our first blanketing of snow. With the change of seasons comes the seasonal affliction of dry, chapped hands, which has been exacerbated by the extra hand washing during the pandemic. To combat the chapping of my hands, I have turned to making a small batch of hand cream that will moisturize and heal them.
I took inspiration from Ruth Goodman, one of my absolute favorite domestic historians, when she was partaking in The Victorian Farm series. (If you haven’t seen any of the farm series’ that she is a part of, please take the time to do so. They are absolutely fascinating and filled with a wealth of knowledge of daily life in different eras.)
In the third episode of The Victorian Farm, Ruth makes a hand cream for her chapped hands and a lip balm (with a hint of color for some undercover cosmetics). Her recipe calls for lard, honey, oatmeal, egg yolks, and rose water to be mixed thoroughly and stored in a jar. Note that she did not give any measurements or her source for the recipe within that video.
At this moment, I do not have all of those listed ingredients to make a batch for myself, however, I was able to create a hand cream using ingredients that I do have in my small apothecary cabinet. Thus, I am able to abide by a Victorian moral code of economy by using what I already have!Continue reading “A Cream for Dry Hands”