Monday, March 21, 2016

HOW-TO: Grow and Maintain Long, Healthy Nails

On the blog and IRL, one of the most frequently asked questions that I receive is "Are your nails fake?". I then proceed to answer with a firm "No way, Jose." and the next question that follows is "How do you keep them so long?" Here's the answer to that question!

Avoid activities that are tough on your nails. I'm not saying that you have to be a lazy princess to have long nails. I'm saying that you shouldn't use your nails a replacement for can openers, scissors, tweezers, pliers and similar tools. I can't count on my fingers how many times I've broken a nail peeling tape off of boxes, opening a mesh bag of oranges, typing violently, or plucking a stray brow hair. Also, if you're going to hand-wash laundry or dishes, consider wearing gloves to avoid exposing your nails to water damage. 

File, don't clip. Filing is more delicate on your nails and will prevent breakage and splitting. On that note, file in one direction. The back and forth vibrations will weaken your nails.

Whenever possible, use acetone-free nail polish remover. While acetone-free polish remover requires more scrubbing and isn't quite as effective as pure acetone, it is less drying. 

Stay hydrated. This includes internal and external hydration - internal as in drinking lots of water; external as in physically moisturizing your nail beds and cuticles. Now you might be wondering. HOW CAN I MOISTURIZE MY NAILS IF I'M WEARING NAIL POLISH? Well, nail polish is actually porous, so products like the CND SolarOil Nail & Cuticle Conditioner, which contains vitamin E and jojoba oil and can penetrate through. Also, don't over-wash your hands because doing so will strip away the natural oils on your nails. 

Eat properly. Don't bite your nails. Nails are not part of a healthy, balanced diet. Nails are mainly made out of protein. So, make sure you're getting enough of that stuff, be it from plant or animal-based sources. 

Last but not least... 
Be patient. Doing all these things won't make your nails zoom out of your fingertips in a day (or even a week). It takes me at least 2-3 weeks to get my nails to a length that I'm satisfied with. You might get annoyed with the way it feels to type/text with long nails... but I promise, stick to it and wait it out just a bit longer. You'll get used to your healthy, long and luscious nails. 

How long does it take you to grow out your nails? Do you have any tips/tricks for healthy nails?

Disclaimer: I'm not a nutritionist, doctor or professional nail tech. The above advice is based on personal experience and may not necessarily work for you. BUT I HOPE IT DOES! :) 

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