How to know that you have healthy nails
Nail plates are pinkish white
Cuticles exist, not cuts
Nails and white tips are of uniform length
White crescent-shaped section (lunula) at the base of the nail
Signs of unhealthy nails:
Peeling or trimming your nails could be dryness or the result of a vitamin deficiency.
Small white spots usually mean that you are biting your nails or painting too often
Horizontal grooves can be from stress, high fever, or finger sticking.
Red and swollen skin around the nails could be caused by removing or biting the cuticles
Spoon nails could be a sign of iron deficiency or anemia.
The best tips to maintain the health of your nails
1. Keep your hands very clean
- Before doing anything, it is important to make sure your nails and the skin around them are completely clean.
- Remove all traces of color with an acetone-free polish remover (anything else unnecessarily dries your nail).
- Apply soap to a toothbrush and then gently scrub your nails and skin. This will remove dirt and exfoliate dead skin without the need for harsh, dry or expensive chemicals.
2. Treat your nails delicately
- Your nails are delicate, and rubbing them too roughly can expose them to infection.
- Do not use metal tools under the nail, as going too deep can cause the nail plate to separate from the skin (called onycholysis). It is a common problem for people over 50.
3. Cut your nails regularly
Regular trims are just as important to your nails as they are to your hair. Therefore, set aside time to cut them every two weeks, adjusting more or less frequently once you see how they are growing.
Here are the ways you can cut your nails
The easiest way to determine the best shape is to mimic that of your cuticles.
What shape makes the fingers look thinner?
If you are concerned about having the “big toe” appearance, opt for a long, tapered shape, such as almond or stiletto. A pointy style, although more over the top, will help lengthen your fingers.
What is the strongest nail shape?
Nails cut as short as possible with a round edge are the best option if you want stronger and healthier nails.
4. You must prioritize health over the length of your nails
Although long nails are nice, if you have problems with breakage you should use a shorter style with a rounded edge, it will be easier to handle and less prone to breakage.
5. Always have files available for your nails
If you are very active and your nails suffer from great wear and tear, you should have a nail file on hand to smooth out the rough edges that occur frequently. To remove small tears, file in one direction for a smoother finish.
6. Have your nail care set ready
You should disinfect the nail tools between each use. It is important to keep them free of bacteria.
To keep your nails infection-free, I advise you to wash your metal tools with soap and water and then clean them with alcohol. Don’t forget to regularly replace disposable tools, such as files. They are inexpensive, easily replaceable products.
7. Do not remove the cuticles from your nails
The cuticle has a very important function: to seal the area at the base of the nail. If you cut it, you can break the protective seal, leaving it vulnerable to bacteria and the possibility of infection. The better your cuticles, the safer your nails will be.
In case you want them not to be seen, I recommend that you push them with an orange tree after showering, subsequently applying cuticle oil.
8. Protect your nails with a base coat
This step not only protects the nail from the polish, it also helps the color appear more saturated and opaque with just one coat. And if you want a much more solid finish, you can add a layer of clear gloss between each colored layer to increase transparency and protection.
9 . Read the labels of the products you use for your nails
As with makeup and skincare, not all nail polish brands are the same, so be sure to buy or use a good product. I suggest you avoid using nail polish that contains toxic chemicals like dibutyl phthalate, formaldehyde, and toluene, as these toxins can contribute to brittleness, splitting, and cracking in your nails.
10. Use a top coat to prevent enamel deterioration
This habit is important because the last coat seals in the polish color and adds a very attractive glossy finish. It is recommended to repeat every three days to achieve a long-lasting manicure and protection against chipping of the nails.
11. Use acrylic or gel treatments on your nails in moderation
Any nail expert will tell you to avoid acrylic or gel manicures, they are long-lasting but very aggressive on your nails.
If you still want to use them, you should know:
The main problem with a gel manicure is exposure to UV light on the drying device, which can damage the skin under and around the nail, increasing the risk of cancer. To help reduce that risk, I recommend that you apply 50 sunscreen before the procedure to help block the damage, or wear special gloves that only expose your nails, protecting the rest of your hands from harmful UV rays.
12. Your nails need a break
The permanent use of enamels will produce dryness, yellowing and weakening of your nails, give them a break during the week. Beware of nail polish removers.
13. Keep nails and hands hydrated
When you go to sleep, in addition to hydrating your face, hydrate your nails. You can use any oil to special use nails.
Recommended to use hand cream.
14. Wear gloves when washing dishes to protect your nails
Whenever you are going to use harsh chemicals, gardening doing something that involves soaking or getting your hands dirty, wear rubber, vinyl, nitrile or plastic gloves, some of which have a cotton lining.
Cleaning dishes in hot, soapy water without gloves can weaken your nails, while getting them covered in dirt from gardening will require a level of cleanliness that you should always avoid.
Also cold weather produces dryness, wear gloves.
15. Take foods rich in protein to strengthen your nails
Your nails are made of a protein called keratin, so you eat food for your skin and hair, you can improve your nails with your daily diet. Vitamins and supplements like biotin, vitamin E, and fish oil in your daily intake and protein-rich foods like legumes, fish, and nuts will make your nails look stronger and rosier.