Jen Atkin’s Latest Ouai Launch Was Inspired By Zoom Real Estate Tours
The brand's new hand care collection looks good in any bathroom — and keeps hands soft and smooth.
When you're at someone's house, do you ever take note of the hand soap in the bathroom? The scent, the bottle design, and whether or not it goes with the general theme of the decor? Jen Atkin does.
For OUAI's expansion into hand care, the founder stealthy scoped out what hand soaps people were using the most via Zoom real estate tours, because in 2020, the only place anyone goes is from the bed to the couch.
"Towards the beginning of COVID, I was sneakily doing virtual house tours with real estate agents to find out the trends in the modern homes right now," Atkin tells InStyle. "I also asked top interior designers what they see most in houses and what they thought was missing in the hand care space."
Atkin discovered that a lot of homes with a light, airy aesthetic had dark soap bottles on their sinks that ultimately killed the vibe. So, OUAI's Hand Wash is housed in a chic, minimalist bottle that goes with virtually every bathroom decor.
After expanding into body care, hand care has always been in the picture for OUAI. That being said, the brand read the room and decided to bump up the launch date after getting a number of requests from fans for hand products after COVID-19 was declared a global pandemic.
When creating the formula, Atkin polled OUAI's followers to find out what their dream hand wash would be like. The result was a wash that would leave hands cleansed, refreshed, and most importantly, hydrated.
That's why the formula contains biodegradable jojoba beads for gentle (and sustainable) exfoliation, avocado, rosehip, and jojoba oils to soothe and moisturize skin, plus castor oil for a creamy lathering texture.
To buy: $32; theouai.com.
The Hand Wash is scented with Dean Street, a fragrance that made its debut in OUAI's body care collection. It's an energizing scent, with notes of citrus fruits and flowers such as rose, magnolia, and linden blossom.
Rounding out the hand care collection is the Hand Lotion and Hand Crème, because even if you wash your hands with a soap that isn't stripping, there's no avoiding dry, flaky, winter hands — especially when you're sanitizing the hell out of them.
The Hand Lotion is extremely hydrating but also boasts a lightweight formula that absorbs into skin without leaving any slimy residue. Like the Hand Wash, it's infused with nourishing avocado, jojoba, and rosehip oils to restore and lock in moisture.
To buy: $32; theouai.com.
Finally, the Hand Crème is a rich cream that instantly leaves hands soft and smooth to the touch — never greasy. Its formula contains hydrating coconut oil, murumuru and shea butters, and is infused with the brand's cult-favorite Rue St. Honoré fragrance, a floral scent with notes of gardenia, violet, and white musk. The buttery soft tube is 100% recycle, and made from sugarcane plastic.
To buy: $24; theouai.com.
And like with the wash, it was important for Atkin to get the formulas for the lotion and cream just right.
"We wanted the hand cream to be thick because it’s one of my pet peeves when you go to grab a cream and it feels more like a lotion or vice versa," she says. "That’s why we came out with everything at once. We wanted there to be an option for someone who wants something lightweight and for someone who wants a heavier formula for fall and winter when skin tends to be more crackly and alligator-like."
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Scent was also everything for Atkin. Since OUAI has become known for its fragrances, she felt the pressure when choosing which ones to use for the brand's first hand care products.
"Our DMs are constantly filled with fans telling us they need products in their favorite scents," she shares. "It’s amazing, but also stressful! We went with Dean Street for the wash and the lotion because it has a great fruity, citrusy smell that wakes you up without being overpowering."
Ouai's Hand Care Collection is now available at theouai.com.