This summer, we all stood on our doorsteps and clapped to thank frontline workers, particularly NHS staff.
However, clapping is all very well, but at Christmas it's time to give something more tangible - and it is nice if this has a touch of luxury.
So, I went hunting for gifts to show thanks in a useful way. As an ex-Beauty Editor, I am passionate about looking after our skin, and when I heard about Jennifer Young's work with hospices, creating skincare for our cancer-drug compromised skin, I looked in her Defiant Beauty range to find products that would help my favourite carers.
These natural, luxurious and indulgent skincare products are perfect for dry, sore, itchy, flaky and sensitive skin. Yes, we get this in spades, but NHS workers have had a horrendous time recently, and their working conditions have produced many of the same effects on skin that we know so well.
Incidentally, these products will probably work equally well for anyone who has had Covid-19 or is currently suffering from Long-covid.
I have picked out two-star products, which should not only help, but also provide a touch of glamour.
I am giving my favourite Nurses skincare for their faces
Do you remember that shocking photo of the nurse with dreadful marks on her face, after she had been wearing a mask on a 12-hour shift? Today these skin problems are still there; nurses find having to wear masks can leave them with horrendous skin on their faces. So, they are getting Defiant Beauty Cleanse & Moisturise Cream.
This cream is a gentle all-purpose balm that acts as 1. a cleanser, 2. a moisturiser and 3. a facemask. I didn't believe it at first, but tried it out for myself, and yes - it is all three. This organic fragrance-free balm was formulated especially for skin as it recovers from chemotherapy treatment, so the dirty, stressful conditions underneath a mask are right up its street.
At the end of a shift, your nurse just has to use one jar; put on the cream, wipe it off and if skin is still dry, pat in another small amount and leave.
Jennifer says "this is our miracle product, the ‘go-to’ for any skin concern, formulated as a cleansing balm, this natural product will remove make-up (including waterproof mascara) with ease.
For helpful front-line workers
Everyone from ambulance drivers to physios have gone out of their way to be helpful. But having to constantly sanitise their hands can leave them with rough red skin. So, they are getting Healing Hand Balm.
This works for us when we find drugs can cause the skin on your hands to become red, sore and peel away. I found the divine Healing Hand Balm restored tired looking hands by intensely moisturising skin, and it is packed with lots of beneficial ingredients such as Cocoa Butter to help nourish and improve elasticity, and healing Calendula to soothe and protect skin against free radical damage. So ideal for soothing hands after constant sanitizing.
Healing Hand Balm’s nourishing formula is easily absorbed; great for when you are on the move and your hands need a little rejuvenation. It got rid of my rough, red skin on my hands, and they are back to former smoothness. It is especially suitable for sensitive skin, which we all get from using hand sanitizer. It absorbs instantly and lasts and lasts; you only need to rub your fingertips across the cream to pick up a thin film, which is easy to spread on your hands. I couldn't believe such a tiny amount would do any good, but when I looked at my hands now the rough redness had disappeared.
Verite writes about skincare, and post-cancer treatment and problems on www.aftercancers.com.