When Necessary Take A Multivitamin
While biotin supplements are a buzzy product in the beauty space, they’re no longer seen by experts as the best option. “Although dermatologists used to recommend biotin as an over-the-counter treatment to help strengthen nails, a 2017 FDA warning highlighted that biotin can interfere with lab testsso we no longer encourage routine biotin supplementation,” explains board-certified dermatologist Peter Hashim, MD, MHS, who recommends focusing more on a balanced diet.
However, if you have a biotin deficiency, New York board-certified podiatrist Adam Cirlincione, MD, says taking biotin can help strengthen and nourish nails. “Deficiencies in biotin can have an effect on hair, nails, and skin, which may be why many people increase their biotin intake to support healthy nails,” he says. “Symptoms of biotin deficiency can include hair loss, dry scaly skin, rash around the mouth, eyes, and nose, and brittle fingernails. Biotin has been proven to help strengthen brittle nails, which in turn can help them grow.”
Another great option is the Tenoverten The Foundation Base Coat from Violet Grey . It’s a more natural way to strengthen your nails as it is an 8-Free formula, which means without the top eight chemicals, including dibutyl phthalate , toluene, and formaldehyde, that are in many nail polish formulas. For a budget-friendly option to strengthen your nails, check out Sally Hansen Mega Strength Hardener .
Avoid Soaking Your Nails In Water
This advice might seem counterintuitive after we recommended staying hydrated to maintain nail strength, but soaking your nails in water can actually weaken them. In general, soaking in water for a long time reduces the water content in our bodies, including our nails.
When washing dishes, wear gloves when possible, and avoid leaving your hands in your bath water for extended periods of time. If you can’t avoid soaking your nails, then be sure to moisturize them afterward with a rich hand lotion or oil.
Dont Overdo The Hand Sanitizer
Because hand sanitizers are typically alcohol-based, constantly applying the stuff can dry out your nails and leave them super brittle. If you have to use hand sanitizer, try not to get it on your nails, and dont overdo it, says Dr. Solomon. Using hand sanitizer wipes can make it easier to avoid the nail area during applicationor if you prefer the liquid variety, make sure to slather on moisturizer afterward to balance the scales.
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Upgrade Your Nail Polish Remover
When your manicure shows signs of chipping, it’s all too easy to pick up any old bottle of nail polish remover. But those containing high concentrations of acetone is extremely harsh on fragile nails and can dry them out almost instantly cue peeling, flaking and splitting.
Your best bet? Go acetone-free. These formulas might be gentler, but don’t underestimate their ability to leave your nails perfectly clean even after a jet-black mani. There are heaps of gentle yet effective formulas out there with the muscle to whip off remnants of polish in moments.
Consider Popping Biotin Supplements
Its yet to be proven without a doubt, but biotin may help to strengthen hair and nails. Because its water-soluble, it isnt stored by the body, so you have to ensure that you consume it daily, says Dr. Solomon.
Generally, most adults should be getting 30 micrograms of biotin daily, according to the National Institutes of Health. The typical recommended supplemental dose is roughly up to 3,000 mcg daily for six months, according to the Cleveland Clinic, but your doctor may recommend less or more, depending on your personal health.
If theres no improvement in nail strength by that time, odds are biotin is unlikely to be helpful. But if your nails do become stronger and you decide to make biotin supplementation a regular thing, make sure you stop taking them a few days before getting any lab tests done, as large amounts of biotin in your system can skew test results.
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How To Keep Your Nails Healthy
This article was co-authored by . Marta Nagorska is a Nail Technician and Nail Art Blogger based in London, UK. She runs the blog, Furious Filer, where she gives tutorials on nail care and advanced nail art. She has been practicing nail art for over 5 years and graduated from Northampton College with distinction with a Nail Technician and Manicurist degree in 2017. She has been awarded the top spot in the OPI Nail Art Competition.There are 11 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been viewed 159,299 times.
Your finger and toenails should be strong and healthy in appearance, free of ridges, dents, and discolorations.XTrustworthy SourceMayo ClinicEducational website from one of the world’s leading hospitalsGo to source If you’re worried your nails aren’t as healthy as they could be, there are many steps you can take to better your nail health. Make an effort to care for your nails, incorporating regular grooming and cleaning into your routine. Monitor your nails on a regular basis, watching out for signs of disease or fungal infections. You should avoid behavior that can harm your nails, like biting your fingernails or overdoing manicures and pedicures.
Ways To Keep Your Nails Healthy
Maintaining healthy nails that look fashionable doesn’t have to be expensive or time-consuming. Follow these tips and impress with your sexy, strong nails.
Regular nail care results in healthy nails that you can be proud to take to work or out on the town. Your nail care plan can be simple and inexpensive. In fact, says dermatologist D’Anne M. Kleinsmith, MD, of the William Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak, Mich., being overly aggressive with cleaning and maintaining nails might actually put your normally strong nails at risk for yeast or bacterial infections. You won’t need frequent manicures to maintain good-looking nails if you follow these eight simple tips.
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How Can I Make A Press
Dixon says a press-on manicure that uses glue can last one to two weeks, but she recommends keeping your fingers as dry as possible while wearing them, which should help give them longevity. Oil and extra moisture loosens them up, she says. Keeping your fingers dry isnt exactly advisable during a pandemic when all health authorities advise washing your hands a ton . So with that in mind, its also a good idea to manage your expectations here. Press-ons are already more fragile than acrylics, and under the best of circumstances, a nail or two might pop off. The good news, of course, is that theyre press-onsso you should keep your glue close, Dixon recommends.
All products featured on SELF are independently selected by our editors. If you buy something through our retail links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Always Keep A Nail File On Hand
If your job or workout routine exposes your nails to potential damage, Dr. Prystowsky advises keeping a nail file handy for on-the-spot buffing of any rough edges. For the smoothest finish, work in one direction with the grain of your nail.
Instead of an emory board, which can cause nails to peel and snag, try a glass nail file. “A glass file will create an even edge to the nail and can be used on the weakest, brittle, and damaged nails,” Dr. Stern says.
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Give Your Nails A Break
Save the elaborate nail art and those bold colors with lots of pigment for the weekend, and during the rest of the week, give your nails time to rest and repair with a clear gloss. Dr. Shamban warns that going from one strong polish color to another without giving your nails a break can dry them out, turn them yellow, and over time, even weaken the structure of the nail.
Dr. Stern agrees, saying that nail polish removers could also be the reason your nails are weak. Sometimes going all natural “can be just the thing that your nails need in order to rejuvenate and refresh,” she says.
Avoid Gel Or Acrylic Nails
Constantly using gels or acrylic nail polish can damage a persons nails, causing them to peel.
According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, the UV light that people use to dry the polish also carries a potential risk. This is because UV light has links to both skin cancer and premature aging. The Foundation recommend applying sunscreen to the hands 20 minutes before a nail salon appointment as a preventive measure.
To help keep the nails strong and healthy, a person should take a break from gels and acrylic polishes or avoid using them altogether.
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Home Remedy Nr 4 Moisturize
Nails that are dry and brittle easily break and split. To make your nails stronger and prevent them from breaking, massage your nails with tea tree oil, almond oil, jojoba oil, flaxseed oil, pumpkin seed oil, or vitamin E oil. Do this every day for about 10 minutes.
Pro Tipp: Womens Best True Beauty Collagen Drink is perfect to further support your hair and nails. It is rich in collagen and high-quality hyaluronic acid and strengthens your nails from the inside.
Take A Closer Look At Your Shampoo
If youre using a shampoo that is drying or aims to strip oils , it might be drying out your nails and causing weak or brittle nails. Try changing up your shampoo for a couple of weeks and see if you notice a difference.
If youve tried multiple things for several weeks and havent noticed any change in your nails, see a dermatologist. They can take a look at your nails and ask you questions about your routine and overall health.
If need be, they can prescribe a prescription-strength nail treatment that can help to strengthen your nails.
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Use Gloves Whenever Needed
Excessive hand washing can be damaging to your nails as constant exposure to soapy or hot water can soften your nails, making them brittle and weak. In addition, constant contact with water can cause nail splitting, which may lead to a condition known as onychoschizia.
Similarly, nails exposed to the dry winter weather often become brittle. This happens especially when temperature fluctuations occur while moving indoors to outdoors or vice versa. Your nails expand and contract periodically according to the temperature they are in. These repetitive changes can weaken the cells, making the nails prone to breakage.
Therefore, wear gloves to protect your nails from water- or weather-caused damage. Use cotton-lined rubber gloves while working with water, such as during gardening, doing the dishes, or housecleaning. Wearing gloves also prevents dirt from getting into your nails, preventing infections.
Additionally, make sure to wipe your nails dry after swimming or showering to keep them dry and prevent bacterial growth.
What Are The Downfalls Of Gel Manicures
The long-lasting effect of gel polish is undoubtedly swoon-worthy, but the side effects can be less than inspiring. Thats because, if you dont have your gel removed with extra care, it can peel off the top layers of your nails along with it. The result? Brittle, ultra-thin nails that seem like they simply wont grow, no matter what you do. Trust me, I speak from experience. Whats more, since UV lights radiate harmful ultraviolet rays, without proper protection it can lead to premature aging of the handsno fun . This leads me to the next section
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Protect Your Nails From Chemical And Uv Exposure
In case you didn’t know: Your nails can experience sun damage, too, turning them yellow, brittle, or dimpled. To protect your tips, experts recommend a UV filter polish that’s able to absorb the rays .
On the chemical front, it’s important to be mindful of any harsh ingredients seeping into your nails. You might have swapped your acetone polish remover, sure, but think about other ways your nails are exposed to chemicals on the daily. For example, if you have traditional dish soap in your kitchen, perhaps wear gloves while cleaning to avoid drying out the nails. “It might be a small step, but over time you’ll notice the difference in your health and the appearance of your nails,” says Lin.
Use A Nail Strengthener
While these tips zero in on how to strengthen your nails naturally, sometimes you need a little extra help. Understandable! A nail strengthener on hand can work wondersjust make sure you’re choosing one that doesn’t have formaldehyde . Good news is, there are plenty of natural-leaning options on the market that include plant-based ingredients like vitamin E, olive oil, garlic, and tea tree.
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It Is Possible With Extra Care To Grow Your Natural Nails As Long As Acrylics Or Tips Done In The Salon
Shirley Cheng, an NYC-based editorial manicurist and nail artist shared her solutions for nails that have seen better days.
My secret weapon for strong healthy nails is cuticle oil. Think of it as conditioner for your nails and skin. When you consider of often you wash your hands daily, imagine if you did that to your hair without conditioning. It would be a wreck, she said. Look for a cuticle oil that is jojoba oil or Vitamin E based. The molecules in these are small enough to penetrate through gel or polish and into your nail. Avoid coconut oil or mineral oil, as these just sit in top of your skin. Bonus: cuticle oil also helps your mani last longer. Frequent washing and everyday activities can make the product brittle causing it to chip. Oiling keeps the product flexible.
Shirley suggests a pro solution too, available at most salons:
“If your nails are already damaged, try asking your nail professional for IBX. It is a nail repair treatment that actually penetrates into the top layers of your nail, similar to what Olaplex does for your hair,” she said.
Eat More Foods That Promote Strong Nails
Avoid yo-yo dieting, which can lead to vitamin deficiencies that may put the strength of your nails in jeopardy. Make sure you eat enough protein and calcium too, which are thought to promote nail health, says Robin Evans, MD, Connecticut-based board-certified dermatologist and clinical instructor at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. Loading up on biotin-rich foods, such as veggies, eggs, and nuts, may also help.
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Make A Diy Cuticle Oil
Hemp oil contains magnesium and vitamin E, both of which can help strengthen your nails and keep your cuticles soft.
Massage a few drops of hemp oil into your nails and cuticles or create your own DIY cuticle oil: Blend one tablespoon each of hemp oil, jojoba oil, and apricot kernel oil with a quarter teaspoon of vitamin E oil.
How To Strengthen Nails: 9 Expert
Even if you have immaculate, smooth-to-the-touch nailsnary a fray in sightkeeping them strong is an entirely different story. Sure, your nails might not feel dry, or brittle, but that doesn’t mean you’re completely off the hook. You wouldn’t shrug off your daily skin care routine just because you don’t see any blemishes or areas of concern, would you? Same goes for nail care: The best offense, after all, is a good defense.
Experts would agreethey’ve weighed in on nine ways to strengthen your nails, so you can keep those tips in tiptop shape:
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Skip The Harmful Chemicals
Speaking of chemicals, there are many associated with traditional nail care. Most nail polish brands are full of them , but its not nearly as destructive to your nails as the acetone that many nail polish removers contain. Acetone dries out skin, nails, and cuticles. Non-acetone polish removers are not quite as harmful as acetone, but they do still have a drying effect and contain a myriad of chemicals.
How Do I Use Press
If painting your nails isnt in your wheelhouse, try press-ons. Im so glad press-ons are making their comeback, Dixon says. I make and work with them on the set of Claws, and they are the perfect solution to achieve the most ideal look without the damage. Before application, Dixon suggests a quick mini mani, which includes washing your hands, filing your nails, and buffing your nails with a nail buffer.
When its time to apply the nails, take it easy with the nail glue. All you need is one or two dots because it will spread around the nail once pressed down, Dixon says. From there, hold the nails down for about 10 to 15 seconds blow on the nail while holding it downto speed up the drying time and give a guaranteed seal.
Since some press-on nails options can be reusable, Dixon advises soaking them in warm water before popping them off. Afterward, give your nails a buff to remove any excess glue and apply oil to nourish the nail.
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