By: Kimberly Walker
Wearing your natural nails can get tricky for those of us who tend to be active. Breaking and snagging are never fun, so here are seven easy tips for keeping your nails long, strong and incredibly healthy.
1. Take Vitamin B12
Streaks, discoloration and brittleness can sometimes point to a vitamin B12 deficiency. Higher levels of B12 in your system can result in rapid growth and the elimination of hardened skin around your nails.
2. Soak Nails in Olive Oil & Lemon
For weak nails in need of strengthening and brightening, squeeze half a lemon into a bowl of olive oil and soak your nails for 15–20 minutes. Lemon, a natural lightener of skin, hair and nails, contains vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant that helps aid in the growth and formation of collagen, which prevents hang nails.
3. Rub Coconut Oil on Your Cuticles
Winter’s dryness can occasionally wreak havoc on nail beds, causing them to crack. Remedy this by massaging coconut oil into your cuticles for five minutes every few days.
4. Darkness Points to Dehydration
Your body has a great way of letting you know when it needs something. If your natural nails are darker than usual and you’re experiencing unusual peeling at the base and the sides of your nails, you may be dehydrated. Drink more water and incorporate more omega-3s, like fish oil.
5. Oval & Square Are Best
Oval and square nail shapes aren’t break-proof but they are best for nails that are prone to chipping and breaking.
6. Take a Break From Gel Nails
Gel nails are gorgeous but they can gradually weaken your natural nails, so take a break from your routine appointments every eight weeks.
7. Drink Highly Antioxidant Tea
Skip the coffee and drink green tea for a week for a rush of antioxidants that will strengthen your immune system and help repair or strengthen nails.
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