Diy to Give You Strong and Healthy Nails
Keep them out of the water
When it comes to how to strengthen nails, Samer Jaber, MD, of Washington Square Dermatology, says to “avoid excessive water exposure, as it can soften your nails.” With overhydration, our nail beds expand as water is absorbed, then contract as the moisture evaporates, leaving them noticeably flimsy and prone to peeling. To keep your nails from getting soft, always wear rubber gloves when you wash dishes, and minimize time spent in hot showers and swimming pools. Check out these 6 tricks for how to stop biting nails.
How you file your nails can make or break them—literally. You’ll want to cut your nails with clippers first, then shape them with a fine-grit cushion file rather than a metal file, which is rougher on the skin around your nails. “I personally prefer the file grade #180, a medium grit file that’s strong enough to get the job done, but soft enough to leave the nail smooth and the surrounding skin unharmed,” says Fernanda Lacerda, co-founder of MB45 Studio, a manicure-blowdry bar in lower Manhattan. “And filing in one direction is always the key to healthy nails,” she adds, as sawing back and forth with the file can weaken the nail’s edges and set you up for rips, tears, and peeling.
Take Biotin supplements
Biotin, a water-soluble vitamin, is the only supplement scientifically proven to strengthen nails, according to Dr. Jaber. In one study, researchers tested the effects of biotin on women with brittle nails, and found a 25 percent increase in nail thickness, reduced splitting of the nails, and normalizing of overall brittle nails after six to nine months. Sometimes the best nail supplements are actually touted for hair. “Hair and nails have a lot in common, and supplements designed to treat one oftentimes result in improvements in the other,” says Whitney Bowe, MD, a board-certified dermatologist in New York City. “For example, I have a number of patients who are taking hair growth supplements like Qilib or Viviscal, and are pleasantly surprised when their nails are less brittle!” Sports Research Biotin infused with coconut oil contains 5,000 micrograms of biotin, which is 1667 percent of our daily requirement. Biotin is nontoxic and has no known side effects, but you may want to double check with your doctor before beginning a daily regimen. Here are some of the things your nails can reveal about your health.
Keep them chemical-free
Warning: You’re not going to like what you’re about to read. Many of your favorite nail polishes, acrylics, and nail polish removers are full of harsh chemicals that cause nail brittleness, dryness, and thinning. So, how to strengthen nails? It’s wise to avoid gel polishes, acrylic nail glue, acetone soaks, and acetone nail polish remover at all costs. “Avoid chemical irritants, as your nails can be damaged from chemical exposures,” says Dr. Jaber. If you can’t resist having your nails painted, stick to non-toxic nail polish, like from Zoya, Jin Soon Choi, and LONDONTOWN (which is actually vegan, gluten-free, and cruelty-free), and acetone-free removers that won’t strip your nails and skin of their natural oils. Learn the things your manicurist won’t tell you.