We all want strong, thick, and beautiful nails, but simply going about our lives can become a minefield of potentially nail-damaging situations.
Here at Julep we’ve put a lot of thought, love, and science into helping you get stronger, sturdier nails with products like Oxygen Nail Treatment, Mighty Nail & Cuticle Serum, and our Color Treat nail polish formula, which lets your nails breathe while infusing them with natural nail-strengthening ingredients.
But even with the help of powerful pals like Oxygen, Mighty and Color Treat, growing your healthiest nails ever starts with fine-tuning your everyday habits. Here are our top tips for how to grow stronger, healthier nails and prevent nail damage—so you can better enjoy all your gorgeous manicures!
1. Limit water exposure. Wear gloves when you wash dishes, and don’t soak in the bath tub for too long—or keep your nails outside the water (clasping that glass of red wine, perhaps?) for most of your soak.
2. But drink lots (and lots) of it. One health and beauty secret we can all benefit from is that hydration is key for beautiful skin, hair, and nails. Drink lots of water throughout the day, and you’ll feel and look better, all the way down to your hydrated cuticles and nails. A balanced diet that includes plenty of protein will also help improve your nail health.
3. Keep your nails on the shorter side. If you’re having trouble with weak nails, consider cutting down the length while you build up their strength. Shorter nails are less prone to breaking, because there are fewer exposed edges to tear and less surface area where water and chemicals can be absorbed. Just make sure to file down your nails in one direction, and don’t saw them back and forth, which can cause your nails to split and peel.
4. Make cuticle oil and hand crème part of your routine. If you don’t keep your nails and cuticles moisturized, common nail problems like hang nails and dry skin can snowball into bigger problems, like chronic cuticle picking and nail peeling. Instead of cutting your cuticles—which, when done incorrectly, can be painful and even provide an opening for bacteria to get into your nails—use cuticle softener to gently push them back, and apply cuticle oil regularly to keep them soft and moisturized. Our Essential Cuticle Oil is lip balm-sized and has a convenient roller ball applicator, so you can keep a bottle in your purse or pocket wherever you go.
5. Try a DIY nail soak. Many people swear by soaking their fingers in olive oil to help with nail hydration and strength. Coconut oil, argan oil, vitamin E oil, tee tree oil, and castor oil can help in the same way. Simply pour a little bit of oil into a bowl and soak each hand for 10 minutes, and massage the oil into your nail beds and cuticles to get the blood circulating. To really lock in the moisture, try soaking your nails at night and wearing gloves to bed.
6. Avoid alcohol-based hand sanitizer, as it can be especially drying for your nails. Wash your hands with soap and water and follow up with hand crème or cuticle oil.
7. Be careful when cleaning. Exposure to chemicals and detergents can weaken your nails, so keep your nails protected during household chores by wearing gloves.
8. Avoid using your nails as tools. Even something as quick as opening a soda can or scratching off a price tag puts pressure on the weakest part of your nail, the tip, and can contribute to peeling and breakage.
9. Make your manicures last longer. Overuse of nail polish remover can dry out your nails, so if you love keeping your nails colorful and polished, increase your manicure longevity to decrease the amount of time your nails are exposed to remover. To keep your nail color lasting longer, start by pushing back your cuticles, use a hydrating base coat and durable top coat like our new Oxygen Smoothing Base Coat and Oxygen Performance Top Coat, apply polish to the free edge of your nail with every coat, and reapply your top coat every few days.
10. Take a break from polish and use a strengthener such as Julep’s Take A Breather. The product gives you the benefits of strengthening with a lovely pink tint.