Strong, healthy shining nails are what we all want, but for a myriad of reasons, our nails can become distressed. Days can be so busy that we just don’t have the time for a manicure at home, let alone to take time out for a professional manicure. Poor eating habits or a low general state of health can also have us yearning for a ‘quick fix’ option.
- Strange shapes, strange colors
Your nails mirror your health and it is time to pay attention to them. If you see any real distortion in either shape or color developing, it’s your Doctor who’ll be coming to the rescue because the changes may indicate a health problem or your diet is lacking an important nutrient.
- Fungal Infections
Anyone who’s ever had a nail infection knows that they are no fun at all. Not only are they unsightly, but you can lose the nail and you can’t put polish on them if you ever want to cure it! If you want to avoid antibiotics, tea tree oil or pure aloe vera can be directly applied a couple of times a day. Both are naturally anti-fungal, antiseptic and anti-bacterial. Tea tree oil and lemon juice will also help with whitening the discoloration associated with the fungal infection. Prevention is the key. Instead of cutting away your cuticles, push them back to avoid infection, choose your manicure salon carefully and keep all manicure tools at home scrupulously clean. Rubbing a little tea-tree oil around the nail bed and edges after your manicure session will also help to prevent any infections.
- Dry, splitting or dull nails
Nails can dry out just like your hair and skin. If you’ve been using detergents or not moisturizing in cold weather, then they may well show that they’ve been neglected. Hyaluronic acid supplements could be useful, as will the rubbing of a rich oil such as olive or coconut oil and leaving it on for as long as possible. Manicure care alone is not enough. Check that your diet contains all the nutrients needed for healthy nails. Fatty acids, Vitamins A, C and E and a range of B Vitamins including Vitamin. H (Biotin) all play their part in making your nails strong and shiny.
- Yellow nails
If your polish has been on for a while, the chances are big your nails to be yellow when it comes off. The answer is not to reapply polish. Nails need to breathe! In the meantime, you can get rid of the yellowing by soaking them in fresh lemon juice. You can also buff them with a mixture of lemon juice and baking soda. Some people use toothpaste. After all, it does whiten your teeth. Whatever you choose, leave on for five minutes, rinse with warm water, dry and rub in a rich moisturizer.
- Splitting nails and rough cuticles
At the start of your manicure session, rub the area where your nail and skin meet with rough rock salt for a few minutes. Then rinse with warm water, dry carefully and massage with a rich oil, Shea butter or commercial hand cream. Choose a time when the product can stay on for a while, such as when you’re reading or watching TV.