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The Best Nail Care Routine

Updated: Jul 7, 2022

Nails are not only an important part of your appearance but also your health. A proper nail care routine is key to keeping your nails healthy and looking great. Here are the basic steps to follow for a good nail care routine.

Remove any nail polish

If you’re trying to keep your nails healthy, it’s important to remove polish regularly. The best nail care routine involves removing polish at least every other week so that your nails don’t get too brittle or dry. Don't skip out on removing your nail polish in your nail care routine.. To do so: First soak cotton balls in nail polish remover and place them over each fingernail for about 10 seconds moving side to side while moving forward towards to tip of the nail.

Wash your hands with soap and water

Washing your hands with soap and water is often cited as one of the best methods for preventing disease spread and killing bacteria, which can cause nails to discolor or get brittle. Not only does it help eliminate germs, but a regular hand wash routine can also keep nails healthy by ridding them of external contaminants. Wash your hands with warm water and liquid dish soap before touching anything that could be contaminated (like shared keyboards or doorknobs). Use an antibacterial sanitizer if you don’t have access to running water (or if you just want to be extra safe). Always use clean towels and make sure that all surfaces are dry before you begin manicuring your nails.

Cut nails straight across

Cutting nails straight across instead of rounding them gives your cuticles a fighting chance. The shape of your nail is mostly determined by genetics, but by cutting straight across you’ll keep them in check and prevent any major problems. If you can’t stand to see jagged edges, opt for an emery board or clippers with built-in guides. Also be sure to apply moisturizer to dry hands before bed each night so they stay soft and smooth all day long.

File nails in one direction only, using a glass file

A glass file will not ruin your nails as it contains no chemicals, but is a gentle file made of soft paper. File nails in one direction only. The key to an elegant nail routine at home is being sure that you consistently file your nails in only one direction, and never against yourself or another surface. When filing your nails, pay attention to hangnails and breakage around the edges of your nails.

Buff nails using an emery board or nail buffer, in one direction only

Buffing your nails regularly is a good nail care routine, and buffing them in one direction only helps to keep nails smooth. Buffing your nails with an emery board or nail buffer will help prevent splitting, cracking and breaking. It’s also best to buff nails before applying polish. If you file instead of buff, be sure to avoid filing in both directions — only file one way — because that could cause breakage. Buff or file nails as frequently as possible for strong and healthy looking fingernails.

Use cuticle remover to soften cuticles

Another good routine is pushing cuticles back to make sure they’re not snagging against nail polish and cutting into your nails. It might sound a little gross, but you can always use cuticle remover to soften them up first so that it’s not quite as unpleasant. There are also tools you can use for cuticle removal that look a bit like tiny rakes.

Moisturize your cuticles & skin on the hands & feet

Maintaining a good nail care routine will help keep your nails healthy and nourished, but moisturizing cuticles is also important for preventing hangnails and other irritations. Jojoba oil is commonly recommended for moisturizing cuticles, as it’s extremely gentle on skin and nails on the hands and feet alike. Simply apply a small amount to each of your hands and rub it in so that it seeps into your nail beds.

As with all beauty routines, it’s important to remember that your nail care routine at home should be relaxing and enjoyable. Experts suggest adding pampering aspects such as scented candles, a warm bath, or even a glass of wine to your routine. When you find something that makes nail maintenance more enjoyable for you, you are much more likely to stick with it. And if that means going out for mani-pedis with friends every other week? Well, there’s no shame in that.

What can you add to your at home nail care routine? Let us know in the comments below.

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