Nailed It: Six Secrets for Maintaining the Perfect Nails

Perfect Fingernails

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, meaning we get a commission if you decide to make a purchase through our links, at no cost to you. Please read our disclosure for more info.

Last Updated on August 26, 2017 by

Perfect Fingernails

Whether you visit the nail salon on a weekly basis, or you like trying out your own manicure techniques, beautiful nails are a must to complete any look. Fingernail health is widely sought after for cosmetic reasons but is also an important indicator of overall health. Fingernails are made up of a hard, protective, non-living material called keratin. Although the nails themselves are not living, keratin comes from living cells that push their way up through the cuticle, so diet, routine care of finger and toenails, and general health practices all have an effect on fingernail health.

If you want to keep your nails looking and feeling good, take a look at the following suggestions to help you maintain the perfect nails.

Stay Hydrated and Moisturized

Use a high quality moisturizer or cuticle oil around the nail bed and cuticle to help prevent snagging cuticles or breaking nails. Topical treatment is not the only way to keep nails moisturized. The human body is made up of anywhere from 55-75% water, and is an absolute necessity for life. Drinking plenty of water will help prevent nails from becoming dry and brittle.

[amazon_link asins=’B000AADF20,B00F644LTQ’ template=’CopyOf-ProductGrid’ store=’stealthestylewp-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’6f84dfb0-8a82-11e7-8f71-9f31a9454c61′]

Do Not Cut Cuticles

Cutting cuticles or pushing them back, while common practice, can open nails and fingers up to infection. It is best to avoid the temptation to trim up cuticles and simply moisturize them.

Limit Trips to Nail Salons

In general, nail salons use harsh chemicals and not the most natural processes that can actually be drying and damaging to fingernails. If you do choose to visit a salon, opt for a basic manicure or simply tips rather than a full acrylic set.

Avoid Overuse of Emery Boards and Files

Overzealous use of rough emery boards and files can actually cause damage to fingernails by causing small chips that can lead to snags and breakage. Proper filing is important to keep nails well shaped and free of snags. Choose a finer grain file and never share it. Sharing nail files can transfer bacteria and spread infection.

[amazon_link asins=’B016EHNWO8,B015OALT0U’ template=’CopyOf-ProductGrid’ store=’stealthestylewp-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’7ed3072d-8a82-11e7-a897-6702fdc7420e’]

Wear Well Fitting Shoes

According to the professionals who specialize in foot care, wearing shoes that are too small, too tight, or too pointy in the toe area can cause toenail damage. Overcrowding and scrunching your toes on a day to day basis can cause toenails to grow into the skin, causing painful ingrown toenails.

Feed Your Nails

What you put into your body will have a greater and longer lasting effect on your nail health than any topical treatment. While there is little concrete research linking fingernail health to any one vitamin, mineral, or supplement, proper nutrition really does play a significant role in the health and beauty of your nails. One nutrient that is beneficial to nail and hair health is vitamin B12, found in food such as meat, dairy products, and eggs.

[amazon_link asins=’B00C43H9KU,B00V3R4CJY’ template=’CopyOf-ProductGrid’ store=’stealthestylewp-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’8a359b78-8a82-11e7-9923-3b3dd837f3f5′]

A combination of routine nail maintenance, avoidance of harsh chemicals, and a healthy nutrient rich diet will all contribute to healthy and strong nails. With a little TLC, you’ll be ready to put your best hand forward.