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Nail health is also important

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Nail health is also important

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Taking care of your nails is vital for overall beauty, as your hands are one of the things that people first notice when they meet you. The best thing is that it’s easy, takes very little time, and is inexpensive.

Nail strength is largely hereditary, however, there are things you can do to improve their health and appearance. Rather than walking around with chipped nails, here’s an easy and healthy routine that all members of the family can adopt.

1. Cut or file nails

At least once a week, file your nails to ensure they are even and neat.

Don’t use metal files as these can weaken your nails. Use emery boards and replace them as needed. File in only one direction, to maintain strong nails. Filing back and forth in both directions can tear your nails. Use a sharp nail cutter to trim your nails. A blunt one will damage your nails.

2. Apply oil to the nails

After filing, apply cuticle oil or any natural oil like castor, vitamin E, or olive oil. Rub the oil into your cuticles to keep them soft and healthy.

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3. Soak

Soak your oiled cuticles in warm water for a few minutes. Soaking for too long or using very hot water will weaken your nails.

4. Trim hang nails

Use a cuticle clipper or nail cutter to get rid of hang nails as they appear. Keep a small nail cutter and nail file with you at all times, so that you can fix problems as they occur.

5. Buff

Buffing your nails can lead to shiny nice nails. Use a smooth buff which doesn’t damage the nails. Avoid vigorous buffing which can damage the nail bed.

6. Moisturise

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Use a hand cream or any rich lotion to keep hands and nails healthy. Moisturise every time you wash your hands, and this will help your nails retain moisture, resulting in less breakage. Remember to rub the lotion into your nails and cuticles.

7. Supplement

If you have weak nails, eat a healthy diet rich in protein, vitamins, and minerals. Fish eggs, nuts, chicken and whole grains will help to harden your nails. If you need to, supplement with a multivitamin or biotin tablet. When your body doesn’t receive enough nutrients, this reflects in the health of your nails.

Keep your nails naked, without nail polish for at least one week, every six weeks to allow them to breathe. If possible, keep your nails polish free for as long as possible. Avoid biting your nails, cuticles or hang nails.

You do not need to cut your cuticles as this could lead to infections. Only trim the hang-nails or dry dead skin at the corners of your nails.

Don’t ignore problems. If you have a nail problem such as discolouration, separation of the nail from the skin, swelling, or changes in nail shape, consult your doctor or dermatologist for an evaluation.

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