10 Things You Can Do Now for Longer, Stronger Nails ASAP

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She also recommends avoiding a ketogenic diet, which is low in carbohydrates and high in fat (think Atkins), due to the biotin depletion it promotes within the body. (If you’re prescribed this diet for medical purposes, take biotin supplements to replace the loss. ) Also, you might want to steer clear of the vending machine, she says—a recent Dutch study showed improvement in nail growth among subjects who maintained an organic, minimally processed diet. “Nails tend to show the first signs of a vitamin deficiency,” says Johnson.

Dry hands are a major problem when it comes to maintaining nail strength and health. “Women don’t think that their nails and hands need to be treated like the skin on their face,” Lippmann says. “It wouldn’t occur to most of us to wash our face and not apply a moisturizer, but we wash our hands over and over and don't apply lotion. ” Dr.

Remember this: Healthy cuticles equal healthy nails. “The main habit to break is picking, trimming, or manipulating your cuticles in any way,” says North Carolina dermatologist and nail specialist Chris G. Adigun, M. D.

And although it’s primarily used for hair growth, Johnson says she’s seen great results on nails with Viviscal. “I believe nails need to be exfoliated on a regular basis to maintain their strength and health," Lippmann says.

While it may seem like a good idea to reach for a hardener that promises stronger nails, such products can actually do more damage than good. “They often cause nails to become so hard that they crack and break more easily,” Dr. Adigun says.

Celebrity manicurist Ashlie Johnson recommends Chanel Le Base. “It's packed with ceramides and peptides to fortify nails and promote growth,” she says. Dr.

Whether you're the type who's always on top of the latest nail trends—like, say, cow print—or prefer a short, simple mani in pale pink, strong, healthy nails are always a good thing.

Cuticles act as both a seal and a barrier, keeping in hydration and keeping out possible infections. “Your cuticles are the last line of defense, acting as a shield to block the spread of bacteria from moving in on your nail,” celebrity manicurist Deborah Lippmann explains. “Cutting them can potentially irritate or infect your nail. ” To avoid both, gently push them back instead of trimming.

When you file your nails, make sure you're doing it correctly. “Shaping your nails may seem like a mindless activity, but it can actually weaken and break your nails if executed improperly,” Lippmann explains.

Adigun suggests upping your intake of protein (get it from pork, broccoli, and lentils), biotin (eggs, salmon, peanuts), zinc (green beans, shellfish, cashews), and iron (beef, spinach, kale) for better nails.

Nail artist Naomi Yasuda paints one coat of Inglot Ridge Filler onto each nail for a matte, neutral finish that makes nails look smooth and clean.

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