After many years of nail-biting, I decided to stop – again! But one thing is to stop nail biting. Another is to help your nails grow out again and get them back to a healthy state. This was something I had never thought about before.
When you stop nail biting, things like filing your nails and trimming your cuticles, become important, as it will help your nails grow out nicely. Even within a few days, you will notice the progress.
And once you have started the journey of getting healthy looking nails you don´t want to go back to nail biting again.
How can you grow out bitten nails?
If you have been a heavy nail biter and have been extending this to your cuticles and the skin around your nails it is harder to get those nails back to normal. It is not impossible, but it requires more work.
Once you start to see the progress it will be rewarding and it will make it easier for you to not want to bite your nails. Let me take you through a treatment that can help you to get those nails back to a natural healthy state.
1) Soothe up the cuticles
If you have been a heavy nail-biter for a long time it is common that the cuticles are damaged and they need to start growing back. So this is where we start! Cuticles are the skin immediately surrounding and protecting your nail, especially near the nail’s beginning edge.
It is recommended to start treating your nails with a cuticle remover like this one. Apply the remover on and around your nails and shortly it will help you to break down excess cuticles. These products normally contain natural products such as aloe and chamomile which will soothe the skin around the nail.
2) Push down the cuticles
Once your nails are covered in the cuticle removers you should wait for a couple of minutes (depending on the product you use) and then start to gently push down the cuticles. This is easiest done with a cuticle pusher. Gently push the cuticles down and use the pusher to remove the excess skin around the nail. If you are using a manicure stick then use the flat end to push the cuticle back, and the pointy end to run along the underside of your fingernail. (Remember: If you continue biting, your cuticles will grow back out.)
Repeat this treatment on all your nails and then remove the cuticle remover. Once you have done the treatment by pushing down the cuticles you should pat dry your hands so they are still moist.
3) Remove the excess skin around the nails
Next, use a manicure nipper to cut the extra skin around your nails. Trimming your cuticles will make the nail appear longer and it will help it to breathe. Just remember to be very careful to only cut away skin that is loose and soft, not your actual cuticles. The skin you want to remove will be white in color compared to the actually attached skin on your fingers.
4) File to a straight edge
After you have removed the excess skin and pushed back the cuticles it is time to file those nails to a straight edge. Be gentle and remember to not move the file back and forward but in just one steady direction. Be careful to keep the corners of your nails smooth so they don’t injure the skin around your nail.
5) Apply an oil-massage
As a final step in your treatment, apply a repairing oil-massage onto the cuticles. Massage the cuticle oil into them every night before bed, and push them back gently with a stick every few days.
You can also wear moisture locking gloves overnight. This will help to seal in the moisturizer and help heal your nails and cuticles. Remove the gloves in the morning and then repeat this procedure every night for longer lasting results.
This YouTube video from HailTheNail shows you step 1-5
Keep them healthy
I hope this treatment will work for you. Now it is important that you keep your nails healthy and that you continuously take good care of them. Always keep your nails dry and clean. This will not only make them look good but it also prevent bacteria from growing under the nail.
Use a file instead of your teeth
It is almost inevitable that your nails won’t break. When it happens do not fall into the trap and using your teeth trying to fix them. Get the file out and smooth them out. Again, remember to always file in one direction.
Moisturize them regularly
To maintain the nails healthy it is important to moisturize them regularly. Make it a habit that whenever you wash your hands with soap, you must apply a moisturizer or hand lotion and massage your hands and the nails. Massage the corners of your nails and the cuticle.
Keep them trimmed
Keep your nails trimmed at all time. And a good advice is to always carry a nail clipper and a nail file with you everywhere you go.
I don’t know why, but it was not until recently (a couple of years ago) I bought a small manicure set (similar to this one on Amazon). It goes without saying that it is pretty handy when you have everything you need together in a small set. That said, I did very well for a long time without a set like this. So it’s not a must have!