If you love nail polish as much as I do, then you probably don’t know what your nails look like unpolished and can’t remember the last time you left them au naturel. Lately I’ve been pretty good about giving my fingernails a break from polish and I’ve noticed they’ve become stronger and brighter. It was much harder to do this with my toenails because they’ve been constantly polished since I was 15 years old. Here’s a few tips to keeping your nails strong, white and healthy. A word of advice, do not research “yellow nails” if you don’t want to end up being paranoid about having different types of gross nail conditions.
- Let them breath: I’ll start with the most obvious tip, give your nails a week long break between manicures/pedicures. No matter how great the brand you’re using or the amount of nutrients they claim it contains, it’s still blocking the oxygen from your nails and that’s the main reason they turn yellow.
- Keep them extra clean: Be sure to scrub your toes and fingertips well, and even get underneath the nail. Dry them well afterwards and then use some cotton swabs and rubbing alcohol to disinfect them.
- Whiten and Brighten: Lemon is a wonderful natural whitening agent. To diminish discoloration, apply some freshly squeezed lemon juice to your nails and leave it on for 15 minutes then buff it with a dry wash cloth. You can also use hydrogen peroxide as an alternative to lemon juice.
- Buffer: Buffing gently with a soft buffer block will also remove the discolored top layer of the nail, but don’t do it too hard or too often or the nail will become weak and brittle.
- Moisturize: Creams and oils with almond extract are my favorite nail and cuticle moisturizers. Applying cuticle oil to your nails everyday will minimize dead skin and strengthen the nail plate.
- Controlling Cuticles: You might be tempted to get your cuticles cut and cleaned every time you get your nails done, but that can actually make them worse. Once a month is more than enough, and even then make sure to only remove the excess skin.
I hope these tips benefit you as much as they did for me! Xo