Ellen Sirot is the supermodel of hands- an occupation that doubtless requires her to treat her appendages with kid gloves. I began thinking about her when an unsolicited goodie bag of Hand Perfection, Ms. Sirot's branded hand care products, arrived. Initially, I vaguely assumed that she had licensed her name to some manufacturer or other. Perhaps because I found the packaging old fashioned and lacking personality. However, after trying out the Nail & Cuticle Treatment ($22) I am more inclined to think these are the real deal.

My nail routine is pretty pared down. I hardly ever have a manicure (laziness, allergic to nail varnish chemicals) and treat hands like a Swiss Army Knife- so it would be waste of time anyway. I do little more for my talons than smear on some Bareille nail strengthening cream once a week with a daily dab of a rich moisturizer (recently Terralina's). Now after using Ellen Sirot's Nail & Cuticle Treatment, I am realizing that they have been woefully neglected.

After only a few days, my nails look buffed, healthy and strong. The very opposite of dry and brittle. Although there is silicone for a superficial sheen, in this case it is probably providing useful protection. But it is the fatty acids in the linseed (flax) oil that are giving my nails their much needed TLC. My inner rebel also likes the idea of smearing cannabis (also an acne cure) on my hands. Hemp seeds are also high (about 28%) in fatty acids. Evening primrose favors the fatty acid called gamma linoleic acid (GLA). Data suggests that GLA application enhances the epidermal barrier, while at the same time hydrating skin.

Kudos also goes to Ellen for the design of the 'pen' applicator that neatly delivers just the right amount of this potion.

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Ingredients:

Cyclopentasiloxane, glycine soja (soybean) oil, caprylic/capric triglyceride, isopropyl myristate, evening primrose (oenothera biennis) oil, linum usitatissimum (linseed) seed oil, cannabis sativa seed oil, retinyl palmitate, tocopheryl acetate, rosemarinus officinalis (rosemary) leaf extract, lavandula angustifolia (lavender) extract, carthamus tinctorious (safflower) seed oil.