Maintaining strong, healthy, attractive nails is a critical part of good grooming and self-care. Whether offering your hand when greeting a business associate or reaching out to caress the face of a loved one, you want your hands and nails to be at their best. There are many habits that are obviously bad for your fingernails. Chewing your fingernails or peeling away your polish is among them. The following 11 activities are habits or activities that you may not even realize are damaging your nails.
11. Wearing Polish Too Long
Leaving your nail polish on long after it has begun to chip away not only looks unsightly but also can be damaging to the nail itself. According to Dr. Joy Rowland of the Cleveland Clinic, nail polish can penetrate the top layers of your nails, drying them out and leaving them brittle and yellowed. Allow your nails to go polish-free for a few weeks between polish applications to allow them to breathe. Apply moisturizer to your nails as well as your hands to keep them from drying out.
10. Using Acetone Polish Remover
It is important to remove nail polish every couple of weeks to allow your nails to breathe. However, acetone polish removers are harsh and can strip away moisture from your nails. Acetone is a powerful chemical that removes polish quickly and easily. The danger comes from also damaging already dry or fragile nails. If you have dry, brittle nails or sensitive skin, you may want to use non-acetone polishes. Reserve acetone for tougher jobs such as dark or no-chip polishes. Be sure to use a moisturizer on your hands and nails following polish removal.