Fingernails: Do’s and don’ts for healthful nails

Are you taking very good care of your nails? Here is what you want to know to retain your fingernails in tiptop shape.

By Mayo Clinic Personnel

Take a close glimpse at your fingernails. Are they powerful and healthful wanting? Or do you see ridges, dents, or areas of unconventional color or shape? Lots of considerably less than fascinating nail conditions can be prevented through suitable fingernail care. Some others might suggest an fundamental problem that wants attention.

Fingernails: What is usual, what’s not

Your fingernails — composed of laminated layers of a protein termed keratin — mature from the location at the base of the nail under your cuticle. Healthy fingernails are easy, with no pits or grooves. They are uniform in coloration and regularity and free of charge of spots or discoloration.

Often fingernails acquire harmless vertical ridges that run from the cuticle to the idea of the nail. Vertical ridges have a tendency to turn into far more popular with age. Fingernails can also produce white strains or spots because of to harm, but these ultimately grow out with the nail.

Not all nail problems are standard, on the other hand. Consult with your medical professional or dermatologist if you recognize:

  • Alterations in nail color, this kind of as discoloration of the whole nail or a dark streak beneath the nail
  • Modifications in nail shape, these types of as curled nails
  • Thinning or thickening of the nails
  • Separation of the nail from the surrounding skin
  • Bleeding all around the nails
  • Inflammation or discomfort all around the nails
  • Failure of nails to expand out

Fingernail treatment: Do’s

To retain your fingernails wanting their ideal:

  • Preserve fingernails dry and clean. This prevents microbes from developing below your fingernails. Recurring or extended get hold of with h2o can add to break up fingernails. Have on cotton-lined rubber gloves when washing dishes, cleansing or utilizing harsh chemical compounds.
  • Exercise superior nail cleanliness. Use a sharp manicure scissors or clippers. Trim your nails straight across, then round the recommendations in a gentle curve.
  • Use moisturizer. When you use hand lotion, rub the lotion into your fingernails and cuticles, much too.
  • Use a protective layer. Applying a nail hardener might help reinforce nails.
  • Check with your medical doctor about biotin. Some research suggests that the nutritional nutritional supplement biotin may possibly enable reinforce weak or brittle fingernails.

Fingernail treatment: Don’ts

To avert nail problems, really don’t:

  • Chunk your fingernails or decide on at your cuticles. These patterns can injury the nail bed. Even a insignificant slash alongside your fingernail can make it possible for microbes or fungi to enter and cause an infection.
  • Pull off hangnails. You could possibly rip dwell tissue alongside with the hangnail. In its place, carefully clip off hangnails.
  • Use harsh nail care products and solutions. Limit your use of nail polish remover. When working with nail polish remover, opt for an acetone-free of charge formula.
  • Disregard problems. If you have a nail dilemma that will not seem to be to go away on its individual or is involved with other indications and signs and symptoms, talk to your doctor or skin doctor for an analysis.

A take note about manicures and pedicures

If you depend on manicures or pedicures for healthier-hunting nails, maintain a few things in thoughts. Stick to salons that show a existing condition license, and perform only with technicians also accredited by the state board. Never have your cuticles taken out — they act to seal the skin to the nail plate, so removal can guide to nail an infection. Also, make absolutely sure your nail technician properly sterilizes all tools used through your procedure to avoid the distribute of an infection.

You may well also inquire how the foot baths are cleaned. Ideally, a bleach option is utilized between clients and the filters are cleaned regularly.

It’s straightforward to neglect your nails — but taking some basic measures can maintain your fingernails healthier and robust.


Get the newest wellness info from Mayo Clinic’s specialists.

Signal up for no cost, and remain up to date on investigate breakthroughs, overall health strategies and present-day health subjects, like COVID-19, additionally skills on taking care of wellness.

To provide you with the most relevant and useful info, and understand which
information and facts is beneficial, we may perhaps mix your e mail and site use data with
other info we have about you. If you are a Mayo Clinic patient, this could
incorporate shielded wellness details. If we blend this info with your shielded
health info, we will take care of all of that information and facts as shielded health and fitness
data and will only use or disclose that details as established forth in our observe of
privacy procedures. You may well choose-out of e mail communications at any time by clicking on
the unsubscribe url in the e-mail.