Healthy nails make a good impression, but even more than that, they act as a shield to our fingertips and toenails. They allow us to more easily and safely grab, pick, scratch, peel, and perform a variety of other tasks.
Here are some of the top do’s and don'ts for healthier, more beautiful looking nails:
1 - Wash regularly and dry well. This aids in preventing bacteria from growing under your nails.
2 - Use moisturizer. Applying a natural lotion can help keep skin and nails looking hydrated and smooth. Be sure to focus around the cuticles.
3 - Avoid harsh chemicals. Keep your hands (and feet) out of synthetic cleaning or beauty care products. This includes many chemical laden dish soaps, shower tile scrubs, nail polishes, and nail polish removers.
4 - Don’t bite nails or pick cuticles. Not only does this introduce a host of bacteria into your mouth, it opens up your skin for possible bacteria or fungus infection. Lack of cuticle strength can weaken and damage nail beds.
5 - Consider collagen. Collagen is one of the major proteins found in nail beds and it supports the nail’s infrastructure. Taking a collagen supplement may aid in avoiding brittle nails and breakage.
6 - Stay hydrated. The way you’d moisturize on the outside with a skin cream, you need to keep hydrated internally too. Drinking enough water each day is important for the body overall, including nails and skin.
7 - Take a break. If you do decorate your nails in polish regularly, be sure to give them some time off. Nails feel hard, but they still absorb. Going polish-free can help get rid of that common “yellow stain” that can come from constantly painted nails.
8 - Fight fungus. If you’re looking for ways to beat a nail infection naturally, using oregano oil, olive leaf extract, or tea tree essential oil may help you out.
9 - Gently brush. Instead of reaching for long, pointy tools for home manicures or cleaning, try scrubbing gently with a natural nail brush instead.
10 - Build strength with biotin. Weak nails may benefit from taking a vitamin in the B complex family called biotin. Other nail-friendly supplements to consider are magnesium, vitamin C, and zinc.
So that’s 10—one for each finger! Our nails are an important part of us and it’s crucial to keep them healthy.