With chores, work, and kids, our nails can really take a beating. Keep those chemical and salon treatments at bay, and protect your nails the all-natural way using nothing more than what’s in your kitchen…
We all want to have pretty hands (or at least passable hands!) that don’t give up our age that easy—but work and chores often mean our nails end up turning brittle and tending to chip and break. Brittle nails follow Murphy’s Law—when needed the most, one or more shall chip, tear, or break! What are the reasons for brittle nails? Age, of course! And also frequent exposure to water, cleaning agents, and of course, the ever-present toxin-filled nail polish.
Sometimes brittle nails are also related to certain diseases like eczema, fungal infections, and hormonal and endocrinal imbalances, but mostly, nails tend to get weak because we forget to give them any kind of TLC. So if your nails have become a pain, here’s some all natural, DIY help that can make them stronger in just a few weeks.
Oil All Over
Other than being great for hair, coconut oil can really help strengthen the nails and moisturize the cuticles as well as the nail bed. Its antifungal and antibiotic properties can stave off any fungal infections and give your nails a healthy gloss as well. And there’s not much you need to do—just warm virgin coconut oil a little and then massage it gently in each nail and cuticle for a total of about 3-5 minutes. Do this before bedtime so that your nails can soak in the nourishment all night long. You can also warm about half a cup coconut oil with 1 teaspoon lemon juice and soak your nails and fingers in it for 5 minutes. Once your soak is done, massage in what is left on your fingers all over your hands and keep the soak in the refrigerator—you can use this for at least a week before it starts to go bad.
- If you don’t like coconut oil or are allergic to it, substitute virgin olive oil, castor oil or jojoba oil.
- You can also break open a vitamin E capsule and use that to massage your nails instead (if the smell is okay with you!).
- Additionally, tea tree essential oil can also fight off fungal infections and breathe in new life into discolored nails. You can add equal amounts of tea tree oil and vitamin E oil and use that to massage your nails at night time.
The Goodness Of Vinegar
Loaded with nutrients like vitamins, potassium, calcium, iron, and malic and acetic acid, apple cider vinegar can really help strengthen those nails from the inside out. Also, in case you are prone to fungal infections, apple cider vinegar can really combat any resistant or lingering ones and fight off any future occurrences as well. You can apply apple cider vinegar to your nails at bed time with a cotton swab and leave it overnight, but if the smell irritates you, dip your nails in an apple cider vinegar and water solution (1:1) for 10 minutes and then wash off with water. Massage in some oil afterward to seal in the effects of the vinegar. The solution can be reused for a week to ten days with ease.
Get A Little Salty
Sea salt has many healing minerals that are good for your nails. It can help strengthen brittle nails as well as soften cuticles and add a brilliant shine to your nails. If your nails are yellowed due to long-term nail polish use, take 1 teaspoon fine-grained salt and break open a vitamin E capsule in it. Mix a little, but don’t let the salt dissolve. Use this to give your hands and nails a good scrubbing. If, however, you have raw cuticles, then dissolve the 2 tablespoons salt in a basin of warm water. Add in a few drops of tea tree, lemon, rose, or myrrh essential oils and let your hands soak in the warmth for 10-15 minutes. Pat dry and apply a moisturizer. Do this at least once a week and you’ll see stronger and shinier nails within a month!
Like always, make sure you are not allergic to any of these ingredients and if something irritates your skin, discontinue the use immediately. A little care taken with all natural ingredients is likely to give your nails a new lease on life—enough to make you seriously consider buying organic nail polish, perhaps? Happy natural beauty to you, and in case you have some tips to share with us, please do write to us in the comments section below!