Nails can instantly elevate or ruin your appearance by how they look. Yet most people don’t pay much attention to them, especially toenails. Getting your nails (and by extension, hands and feet) is quite easy actually.

When showering and washing dishes, avoid using extremely hot water. This causes your skin and nails to dry out, leaving them looking unsightly. Use lukewarm water instead. For extra protection, wear rubber gloves while doing house chores.

After showering, washing your hands and doing the dishes, apply moisturiser. Do this while your skin is still damp to seal in hydration. Concentrate on the cuticle area which tends to be overlooked.

Avoid using your nails as tools for opening container lids and other harsh tasks. You may not feel anything then, but your nails get weaker over time. Treat your hands like silk and they will reward you.

To keep your hands and feet moisturised at night, wear cotton gloves and socks to bed. This is after applying your favourite lotion or oil.

Always use gentle cleansers/ soaps that remove dirt without stripping you of your skin’s natural oil. Avoid soaps that contain sodium laurel/ laureth sulphate- this ingredient is notorious for drying the skin.

Give your nails sufficient breaks in between mani-pedis. Constantly having them in nail polish may weaken them, dry them and cause discolouration with time. Allow a week or two in between polish applications. Be cautious of the polishes you use. Steer clear of those which contain polishes toxic chemicals like dibutyl phthalate, formaldehyde, and toluene. They can contribute to brittleness, splitting, and cracking.

Be gentle with your cuticles. They are there to protect the delicate nail bed. Removing them leaves you vulnerable to bacteria and the possibility of infection. Instead, gently push them back after showering and massage the area with a moisturising lotion.

Just as with hair, our nails are made of protein called keratin. Therefore if you desire stronger nails, consume more protein- rich foods.


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