Tuesday, June 30, 2020

Nails: Fingernail Health Q & A

The following are two of the most frequently asked questions and their answers from my favorite nail professional, Sharon Bayles. This is an excerpt from by second book, Skin Care A to Z.

Why do my nails peel?

Many factors could be to blame for this annoying problem. It’s usually environment or chemical stresses. Your nails are porous, so excessive washing can make them brittle, as mentioned before.

Never use polish removers with acetone (very drying) or polish with sensitizing ingredients like toluene, nitrocellulose or formaldehyde. If your nails have always peeled, you have your parents to thank for that gene! Buffing is an excellent option because it helps to hold the peeling ends together, and it shines like a polish would without the chemicals. Buy a good buffing cream and a chamois buffer and shine away! Note that buffing is great for most nails to diminish ridges and peeling ends, but should be avoided if skin or nail disorders like psoriasis or dermatitis are present.

How can I get my nails to grow?

Having regular manicures by either yourself or a licensed professional is the fastest way to healthy nails. Always incorporate a good massage to your hands and pull on the fingers to tips to get the blood circulating. You will see results with this consistent care. Second, don’t think you have to have talons to have great nails. Be realistic and honest. Most of us know our nail length “limit.” Keeping nails trimmed at or below this limit will eliminate a lot of breakage.

When looking for a manicurist, be sure to find a qualified professional. Ask her how many natural nail manicures she does. This is important because you could get roped into wearing fake nails before you know it. Believe me, this “quick fix” could take your nails years to recover from all the damage. Some damage could even be permanent.

And my last tip is to always wear sunscreen on your hands. In the years to come you’ll thank yourself as you hear your friends complaining about their “spots.”

Thank you, Sharon, for helping to explain the answers to these important questions.

For more information on taking good care of your hands and nails, see: