Made up of layers of keratin, nails serve as the first line of defense for your fingers and toes. Strong and healthy nails are an indicator of good health. Though they naturally change as you age, they can also split, peel, or go brittle from time to time. Weak nails can be the result of harmless external factors, poor lifestyle habits, or even an underlying health condition—it truly is best to be mindful.
Fortunately, basic nail care isn’t complex or expensive. None of these tips involve religiously hitting the the nail salon for manicures, pedicures, and other spa treatments (but feel free to do so every now and then in the name of self-care). Instead, they require small lifestyle changes that aren’t too difficult to adapt. The sooner these practices become a habit, the sooner you can say bid broken, brittle nails adieu!
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By Metro.StyleDecember 03 2023, 5:37 PM
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Practice good hygiene!
Long, glamorous talons are nice to have, but they are potential breeding grounds for dirt and bacteria simply because there’s more room for growth. Keep them short, trim them often, and don’t forget to soap the undersides (a nail brush goes the extra mile) when you wash your hands.
A must when doing household chores! Wear gloves when washing the dishes or doing the laundry to keep your hands safe from harsh chemicals. Detergents and cleaning fluids can cause nails to weaken. It’s also good to use hand creams afterwards.
What you eat always matters. Food rich in biotin, protein, iron, magnesium, and omega-3 fatty acids help strengthen your nails and even give them a shiny, healthy appearance. Salmon, mackerel, eggs, walnuts, soy, legumes, and whole grains are just some examples.
While a good diet goes a long way, taking supplements can also help you meet your nail care needs. Biotin is a water-soluble B vitamin that isn’t stored by the body, so it’s good to consume it daily. Before you take any supplements, please consult a healthcare provider to ensure your safety.
Yes, there is a correct way to file your nails. Filing itself makes them more durable and less prone to breakage, but doing it wrong will do more harm than good. File only when dry and go in one direction using the same pressure. When done, go over with a buffing block for optimum shine.
Your nails need to breathe. Constant exposure to nail polish and acetone can and will weaken the nails. Leave your polish on for about a week, take it off with acetone-free remover, and let them rest for another week. Be careful when going for gel nails, too, as exposure to the UV lamp can raise risks for skin cancer and premature aging.