Disclaimer: This post features item(s) received at no cost for reviewing purposes, but the opinions are mine and, as always, honest. Read the full disclosure here.

California North is a skincare company based in Sausalito, California, founded by Jim Miller in 1990. Their first products were created for active, outdoor enthusiasts that needed quality products to counteract the visual effects of aging, sun, environment, and other lifestyle factors. Their products are full-sized, reasonably priced and formulated for both men and women. The company is cruelty-free and Leaping Bunny certified.

I was always that person that has a hand cream on her desk at work, and everyone would come by to use it. However annoying that was (especially if they use it up just when I need some), it shows how important such products are for me. The skin on my hands is always dry, whatever the season, but gets really bad in the winter. That’s why I have hand creams everywhere. I carry them in my purse, backpack, gym bag, there is one on my side table, multiples in the bathroom and bedroom…you get the picture. I have to moisturize after every contact with water, and even if my hands were not in water they would get dry. So I happily welcomed the California North Appellation Grapeseed Hand and Nail Cream into my life.

The product is advertised as a deep moisturizing cream that heals and protects skin, while being non-greasy and pH balanced. It’s formulated for all weather conditions, and contains antioxidants from milled grapeseed. I noticed some great botanical extracts in the ingredients, but also have to note that this product contains parabens. I’m happy to see that the ingredients list is not too long.

Ingredients: Aqua, Bentonite, Propylene Glycol, Kaolin, Magnesium Aluminum Silicate, Talc, SD Alcohol 40, Witch Hazel, Vitamin E, Vitamin A, Grape Seed Extract, Arnica Extract, Matricaria Extract, Grapefruit Extract, Camelia Leaf Extract, Disodium EDTA, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Fragrance.


As most hand creams, this one comes in a tube plastic packaging, that is 100% recyclable. I really like that it’s transparent, so I can easily notice when I’m running out. It’s a bigger hand cream than the most I get, with 5 oz/ 140 ml, so it should last a while. The product inside has an off-white color, and I really appreciate no added coloring, since there is no need for it.

At first I couldn’t put my finger on the scent. The hand cream has a light, creamy, warm scent that was so familiar. Then I checked the product description: “Luxurious honey butter scent“. It truly does smell like that. It has a bit of honey sweetness and the soft creamy scent of fresh butter, even a hint of vanilla. Overall, the scent isn’t strong, and I can only notice it when I’m applying the cream or when I directly sniff my hands afterwards.

The cream has a thicker consistency, but fairly light once I start rubbing it in. I only need a small amount, and it absorbs almost instantly, with no greasiness. It makes my skin feel almost velvety. However, this is not a deeply moisturizing cream for me. It’s not light, either, but somewhere in between. It provides my hands with enough hydration for a few hours during the summer, but I would have to apply it more often during winter months. It’s definitely more effective than most drugstore hand creams I’ve tried, even the ones advertised for extremely dry hands.


California North products are available for order on their website, and they ship to USA, Canada, UK and the rest of Europe. The Appellation Hand and Nail Cream comes in only one size, 5 oz/ 140 ml, and retails for $19 USD. To check the price in CAD or EUR, head over to their Canadian website, or the European one.

I love this big size for keeping around the house, since it takes a while for it to run out, but I wish they had a smaller size, too, for carrying around. I love non-greasy hand creams for when I head outdoors, since there is usually no time for me to let the cream sink in before doing other things on the go.

What is your favorite hand cream? Did you think about using natural ones? What is your favorite natural skincare company?