Your lifestyle habits are the key to building strong, healthy nails. From drinking plenty of water to ditching unhealthy behaviors like biting nails, this simple regimen will strengthen and promote better nail health over time.
Excessive hand sanitizer use can dry out nails, so choose alcohol-free options and apply moisturizer afterwards. Furthermore, eating foods rich in biotin which promote nail strength should also help.
1. Soak Your Nails in Lemon Juice
Lemons are an abundant source of Vitamin C, an essential nutrient for maintaining healthy nails and eliminating stains. Soak your fingernails daily in a solution composed of lemon juice and olive oil (or just the olive oil) for 10 minutes for best results, or rub slices of lemon over them. This treatment is especially useful for strengthening weak or brittle nails as well as improving their condition overall.
Vitamin C found in lemons helps brighten nail colors. This is particularly effective for those trying to get rid of yellowing nails caused by too much nail polish or using no-chip base coat.
Mix together several teaspoons of water with several drops of lemon juice and stir in baking soda until it bubbles, and soak your nails for several minutes in this solution before rinsing off and applying moisturizing lotion.
Massage your cuticles with coconut oil to soften and moisturize them, cuticles being an important barrier against infection-causing fungus and bacteria that could otherwise enter through open pores on your fingertips.
Drinking plenty of water and eating a well-rounded diet are both key components to improving nail health, including strengthening them through diet. Focus on foods high in zinc, selenium, silica, protein, vitamins B3 and E as these will provide essential building blocks. Supplements may also assist with nail health; biotin is found naturally in eggs, salmon, dairy products and many other food sources; in addition collagen, keratin and l-cystine can be taken via shakes, pills nutritional bars etc.
2. Garlic Top Coat
Garlic is widely known for being an antiseptic, and we may all have used it at one point or another to relieve a cold (garlic soup, anyone?). But did you also know that applying a garlic top coat could also strengthen nails? Garlic contains sulfur compounds and Vitamin C which have numerous health benefits including keeping nails flexible while preventing breakage and stimulating nail growth.
Applying tea tree oil directly to the skin and nails acts as an antifungal agent that fights bacteria and fungus that causes brittle and broken nails, while providing essential antioxidants and essential minerals such as selenium and zinc for nail health.
One effective but somewhat unpleasant way of using garlic on your nails is rubbing them with a piece of minced or sliced clove, although this method may leave behind an unpleasant odor. A less smelly approach would be mixing garlic into your preferred base or top coat such as Nails By Mia Secret or Nutrine which offer products specifically with this feature.
These products come as clear nail polish or can be applied as a base coat before your regular color application, both of which will strengthen and improve the appearance of your nails.
Making natural garlic nail strengthener at home is another option, although this may take more time and requires you to be in full control of what goes into it. Our recipe works well here – just remember to use high quality ingredients like olive oil which deeply nourish both nails and cuticles!
3. Moisturize Your Nails
Moisturizing is essential to healthy skin, but nails also need daily TLC. Dry and brittle nails may signal they need moisture – easily prevented with the addition of cuticle oil to your beauty routine. According to dermatologist Sheel Desai Solomon M.D, cuticle oils contain many nourishing ingredients which strengthen nails. For maximum hydration use products like L’Occitane Shea Nourishing Nail & Cuticle Oil which features shea butter and essential oils designed to nourish cuticles while strengthening nails – or L’Occitane Shea Nourishing Nail & Cuticle Oil which features shea butter for extra hydrating your cuticles as well.
Avoid polishing your nails too frequently and choose clear coat over vibrant or dark colors when doing so. Constant removal and application can increase their susceptibility to breaking and chipping while altering their natural hue, leading to yellowed, weakened nails that could further weaken them over time.
Massaging fingernails is another nail health hack, helping with blood circulation and growth. According to Dr. Tanzi, massaging helps stimulate blood vessels which then leads to stronger, thicker nails. Simply apply hand lotion and gently massage each nail and cuticle.
If you’re confused about how best to care for your nails, visiting a dermatologist could be beneficial in providing more specific advice – like prescription-strength nail treatments – as well as suggesting certain foods such as fish and leafy green vegetables which could support nail health.
If you’re new to nail care, begin by forgoing harsh treatments that contain acetone. Instead, opt for natural products which strengthen nails while preventing hangnails such as orange juice, shea butter or tomato juice.
4. Eat Healthy Foods
As with the rest of your body, your nails require proper nourishment to thrive. In fact, nail health is often an indicator of overall diet habits, meaning any change in the appearance of your nails could signal potential underlying health concerns.
Unfortunately, there are some simple yet tasty ways to strengthen your nails without resorting to costly treatments or nail products. Start by eating more of these healthy foods that will nourish both your skin and nails from within!
Protein is one of the essential elements for strong nails, and it’s easy to incorporate plenty into your diet by including lean meats in meals and adding eggs as sources of protein and other beneficial vitamins and nutrients to boost nail strength.
Snacking on nuts and seeds may also help your nail health, as they contain essential minerals, vitamins, and nutrients essential for strong nails. Almonds provide an excellent source of magnesium while sunflower seeds offer both zinc and protein as essential supplements.
As drinking enough water can improve nail strength and help avoid dry, brittle nails, it is also crucial that you drink an appropriate amount. Watermelons or cucumbers contain lots of liquid that will help hydrate you more. Likewise, make sure that rubber, vinyl or nitrile gloves are worn when doing chores that involve hot or soapy water for too long; additionally avoid alcohol-based hand sanitizer as this could also deteriorate their condition over time.
5. See Your Doctor
Your nails reveal much about your overall health, so brittle or discolored ones could be an indicator of an iron deficiency, hypothyroidism, psoriasis or Raynaud’s syndrome (a circulatory disorder which leads to cold hands and fingers).
Frequent hand washing and the use of harsh cleaning products can damage nails over time, leaving them dry, brittle, and discolored. To combat this damage, always wear rubber, vinyl, nitrile or plastic gloves when cleaning dishes or wearing rubber mittens to protect hands from cold and wind which could further deteriorate them.
Avoid biting or picking your nails, which can damage the surrounding skin and lead to infection. Also try not to pull off hangnails too frequently as doing so can damage live tissue that leads to infections; rather gently clip off hangnails instead of pulling them completely off, while selecting an acetone-free nail polish remover may be less harsh on both nails and cuticles.
Though diet should always come first in terms of nail health promotion, some may benefit from taking biotin supplements to strengthen their nails. You can find biotin in foods like sardines, cooked eggs and legumes or supplements available as pills; just ensure it’s appropriate for you before beginning to take them. If taking supplements is something that interests you make sure it meets the standards set forth by your healthcare provider for safety first.