By Katie Faulkner
Top Tips for Beautiful Nails
If you crave strong, smooth, healthy looking nails, there are a few simple and inexpensive tricks that can take your regular nail care to the next level. Follow these simple health hacks for vibrant and strong nails.
1. Practice regular care. The surest route to healthy nails is through establishing regular and consistent hygiene habits. If daily care is too time consuming, find a time once or twice a week when you can set aside a few minutes to focus on your nails.
2. Clean nails with a nail brush. Using a soft bristle nail brush with gentle soap and warm water is a much safer way to clear dirt out from under your nails than using a sharp metal file or nail tool. Those tools can break the skin of your nail bed, leaving you vulnerable to infection.
3. Moisturize cuticles and nail beds. Don’t forget to show your cuticles some love. They are the barrier between your nail bed and infection. Most health experts agree that it’s best not to trim them, or even aggressively push them back. Instead, opt for massaging your favorite lotion or oil into your cuticles and even nails a few times a week. This helps keep cuticles looking and functioning their best, while also preventing brittle nails.
4. Don’t bite, pick, or use harsh chemicals. Biting nails, pulling hangnails, and picking at cuticles can cause damage. Using nail polish removers with acetone or other harsh chemicals strips nails of moisture and nutrients and can lead to brittle and breaking nails, damaged nail beds, and additional negative side effects. Instead, opt for acetone-free nail polish remover, available at most regular retailers.
5. Protect your nails. This applies to everything from wearing gloves while gardening or using harsh cleaning chemicals to giving your nails a break from polish and acrylic or gel manicures. Natural nails should be flexible and regularly cleaned and moisturized.
6. Consider supplements. Your nails consist of keratin, a protein. Supplements such as vitamin E or biotin can help boost your body’s levels of healthy nail nutrients like keratin, so consider adding them to your routine. But, be sure to talk to your doctor before beginning any new supplement regimen.