When former Estée Lauder Companies executive Randi Christiansen and Into The Gloss co-founder Nick Axelrod launched their sleek, modern personal care brand Nécessaire in 2018, they set out to explore two very specific things. First, the idea of thoughtful curation; two, promoting conscious consumption — paring things down in order to buy less, buy better, and buy what's necessary. "Our name really became a filter," Christiansen, the brand's CEO, tells NYLON. "I like to say it's the filter for everything we do. Is the product necessary? Is the ingredient necessary? Is the conversation necessary?"
This filter is why after two years — in a market that is constantly saying more, more, more — Nécessaire still offers less than 10 products, all of which are true essentials, like body wash, lotion, and deodorant. Today, while following those same guidelines and ethos it set out for itself at the beginning, the brand launched the latest addition to its lineup, and potentially one of its most highly requested: The Hand Cream ($20).
Much like the other Nécessaire products that came before it, The Hand Cream was designed to be like skincare for your body (and in this case, your hands specifically), formulated with facial grade ingredients that keep skin health top of mind. "I think it's very much a treatment product," says Christiansen. The clean, vegan, and hypoallergenic formula is packed with peptide and multi-vitamins — including buzzy skincare ingredient of the moment, niacinamide — that Christiansen says work together to form an invisible glove on the hands, protecting the skin from environmental stressors.
You'll also see other ingredients in the mix that are popular for good reason, like squalene, a natural emollient that locks in moisture and eases dry patches. While the product was dreamt up long before the coronavirus took hold of everyday life, the ultra-hydrating and soothing texture of this cream couldn't be more timely.
As a beauty editor who has tried out my fair share of hand creams and moisturizers, The Hand Cream from Nécessaire is one of the most fast absorbing formulas I've ever used, leaving me with little if any time in between application and being able to use my hands again. It leaves behind a silky, smooth feel; dried but not dry or tight.
For now, the formula remains fragrance-free only, much in the way its earlier products did at launch."I always like to say that I want the products we launch to be able to stand alone in a scent-free version," says Christiansen. And they do.