11 Nail Growth Tips Anyone Can Master

Want longer nails? Try these easy nail growth tips.

Growing out your nails can be seriously difficult. I’m determined to have nice looking hands and nails for my upcoming wedding, but my weak nails are doing their best to stop me. The last few months of determination have blessed me with quite a few nail growth tips to pass along so you too can have the talons of your dreams.

This used to be the longest I could grow my nails.

Now they’re the claws of my dreams.

Sure, you could always go for acrylic nails which makes things much easier. But the few times I’ve tried them they looked just too big for my hands. I have teensy nail beds (something we’ll talk about in tip 11) and acrylics tend to look bulky. I’ve managed to grow out my nails from lil’ nubs to decent talons but I still managed a nail break. It happens! The key, most important nail growth tip is patience — without it you’ll never grow out your nails.

Other than that, these nail growth tips fall into two categories: hydration, protection.

Oh pinky nail, it was nice knowing you.

Hydration nail growth tips

Keeping your hands and nails properly hydrated (with the correct products) helps prevent cracks in your nails and cuticles. Plus, long nails pair really well with this DIY matte nail polish look.

1. Use cuticle oil

I swear by cuticle oil. It’s the number one way that I’ve been able to grow out my nails, I’m sure. I use the Simply Pure nail oil by Bliss Kiss. It’s a bit pricy but this little bottle has lasted about six months and it’s only half used. I use cuticle oil every night (though you could do it more often) to keep my nails and cuticles hydrated. I almost never get hang nails now, and massaging in the oil helps to encourage blood flow to the nail area.

Imagine how cute your newly lengthened nails will be with our DIY quartz nails tutorial?

2. Avoid water

Have you ever noticed your nails get soft when you shower or wash the dishes? It’s because the water has penetrated your nail, hydrating it in the worst way possible. Because wet nails are so soft they can tend to rip or bend (creating a possible breaking point later). Obviously don’t avoid water all together, just keep your nails in mind when they’re saturated with water.

3. Use hand cream

This is more for keeping your hands looking good too, but it doesn’t hurt your nails. I’ve been using this Baht and Body Works French Lavender and Honey lotion because it smells delightful, not because it’s the most hydrating lotion in the world. If you suffer from cracked or dry nails/hands use something a little more intense like Lucas Paw Paw Ointment. keeping lotion at your desk or in your handbag helps to remind you to actually use it.

4. Try supplements

Obviously before taking any supplements for anything you should chat with your doctor. Supplements that may help nail growth are: collagen, biotin, and fish oil. Keep in mind, supplements aren’t going to make your nails grow faster, but may make your nails heartier so they’re less likely to break.

Protection nail growth tips

The best way to grow your nails? Stop breaking them! These nail growth tips are all about keeping the nails you have nice and safe.

5. Remove oils prior to manicures

All that hydration is great, just not when you’re about to put on polish. Having oil on your nails prevents the polish from adhering to the surface of your nails and makes polish chip much faster. Keeping your polish looking great helps if you’re a polish picker and keeps the nail protected.

6. Keep polish on at all times

That’s right! Polish protects your nails so they’re less likely to be damaged. There’s no reason for your nails to “breathe” between manicures. Take one off, put the next one right on. Think of polish like your nail armor.

7. Gels provide more protection but more potential damage

Stronger than regular nail polish, many people use gels to help protect their nails so they can grow. I do it! Opting for gels is a catch 22. Yes, they totally protect your nails more than standard nail polish. But, they’re also much more damaging to remove. One little swipe of nail polish remover can take off regular polish but you have to soak your nails in acetone to remove gels. It’s seriously drying and can, in my experience, lead to the edges of your nails cracking.

8. Never open anything with your nails

Never ever open a can with your nails. Use a spoon! Or have a less nail-careful friend do it for you. Putting too much pressure on your nails can cause breaks fairly easily.

9. Wear protective gloves while cleaning and in winter

This is a seemingly obvious one, but it needs to be said. When in doubt, wear gloves! It literally can’t hurt, it can only help. This is also one of the best ways to make hands look younger.

MAKE IT STOP!

10. Stop tapping your nails

Tapping your nails once they get long can be so addicting. But, just like everything else it puts pressure on your nails. I once broke the tip of a nail because I was tapping away. Plus, most people get annoyed by nail tappers so it’s best to avoid for your nails sake, and to keep your coworkers happy.

Extra tip

11. Fake it till you make it

If you end up breaking just one nail, don’t chop the rest down to match. Pop on a falsie! I like the Kiss Active Oval nails because they’re thin and it comes with 100 nails. You’re pretty much set for life. The only problem I have is that my nails are so small that even the smallest nail they offer is too big to go on my pinky nail. If this is the case for you too, take a nail file and file down the sides of the fake nail till it fits. Then you can glue it on and paint it to match the rest of your manicure.

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Bio: She’s a New Orleans based beauty writer, nail polish hoarder, and doughnut enthusiast. When she isn’t camping out in her local coffee shop for hours on end, you’ll probably find her taking selfies in front of every colorful wall she’s ever seen. Follow along on Twitter and Instagram @themercuteify.