Five Simple Tips to Care for Dry and Damaged Nails

If you feel like everyone tends to stare at your hands the minute you have chipped polish, a cracked nail or are seriously overdue for a manicure, you’re not alone. A fresh manicure and healthy nails that are long and strong can really make you feel ready for anything but weak nails that break simply by looking at them the wrong way? Not fun for anybody.

Our everyday lives put our nails through quite a lot and when you have one split, it feels like a trip down a never-ending tunnel that only leads to a forever uneven manicure. Well, not anymore. It’s actually pretty easy to rehab your nails and turn them from dry and damaged into a set that could rival even gels. Even better, our favourite tips are easy to follow, inexpensive and don’t require any major time commitments.

Soak Your Nails in Olive Oil

Likely a staple in your kitchen, olive oil should be a staple in any DIY or budget beauty routine too. It’s a super hydrator and works as an emollient creating a protective barrier on your skin to seal in hydration. Soaking your fingernails in a bit of olive oil for 10-15 mins daily for seriously damaged nails and weekly for those that need a bit of maintenance will helps to repair cracks, fight dehydration and strengthen your nails in the fight against tears and breakages.

Use Cuticle Oil and Hand Cream Every. Single. Day

I spent years vowing to use hand cream every day only to forget mere days after making my promise. Having to use litres of hand sanitiser throughout 2020 proved to be the final straw and kicked me into the habit of using hand cream and cuticle oil regularly to prevent my hands and nail beds from serious damage. My best tip for remembering to use it? Stash them with your skincare and add it into your routine so you always moisturise your hands and nails after finishing your face.

Wear Gloves When Cleaning or Doing DIY Projects

Our nails go through a lot in our everyday lives so it’s important to take every measure possible to prevent them from getting knocked about even more. Cleaning products such as detergents can be drying and damage the nail bed preventing the healthy growth of your nails. Gloves will not only protect you from your cleaning products and soil when you’re gardening, they also create a barrier between your nails and any chances of catching it on something that will cause it to split.

Eat Biotin Rich Foods

Biotin is great for strengthening the building blocks in our hair, skin and nails so ensuring your diet includes biotin rich foods will help. Cooked eggs, wholegrains, cauliflower and avocado are some of the best sources that are really easy to fit into your daily diet. If you really want to up the ante there are plenty of great biotin supplements available.

Don’t Use Your Nails as Tools

Michelle Lee, editor of Allure magazine and nail-art extraordinaire (her insta offers endless inspiration), shared this tip on a podcast I listened to and it has changed how I care for my nails forever. It feels like second nature to be opening, scratching or cleaning something with your nails but scratching that sticker off is a recipe for disaster. Avoid using your fingernails as tools and you’ll help to prevent weakening, bending and even breaking them.

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