Today, we’re going to talk about nail-biting.
I know, I know, you biters don’t want to hear it. You’ve probably thought about quitting before. Maybe you have already tried some techniques, like dipping your fingers in nail polish remover or investing in that clear polish that makes your nails taste bad. I understand that nail-biting is a widespread habit that is notoriously difficult to quit. Even Kate Middleton has been caught nibbling her nails. But as a nail technician, I must confess that nail-biting is the bane of my existence.
Since it’s the new year, let’s kick this habit for good with some of these tips and tricks.
1. Quick scare tactic: it’s bad for you.
Think about everything you do with your hands on a daily basis. Even if you’re washing your hands frequently, germs and bacteria still grow underneath your nails. When you bite your nails, you’re transferring all that gross-ness from your nail beds into your mouth. Biting hangnails can cause infection within the nail bed. Ragged, nubby and sometimes bloody nails make my heart ache. Plus, you can permanently damage your teeth, your gums and your nails!
2. Decide to quit. Continue not doing it.
This may sound silly, but if you want to quit biting, you have to really want it. If you feel the urge to bite, think about the positive aspects of changing this habit: attractive, healthy looking nails, a sense of accomplishment, perhaps even a major boost in self-confidence or a newfound nail polish addiction!
3. Build yourself a nail care kit.
If you’re serious about kicking your habit, then you’re going to need the proper tools. I would suggest the following: a pair of nail clippers, a nail file, cuticle pusher, cuticle nippers, hand cream, and cuticle oil/balm. Carry the kit in your purse, so you can take care of broken nails or hang nails on the go without biting them off.
Keeping your hands moisturized is one of the best and easiest things you can do for the health of your nails. Keep cuticle oil next to your bed and apply it at night, so it will have time to absorb into your nail matrix. I love CND Solar Oil and Lush Lemon Cuticle Butter.
4. Give yourself weekly manicures!
In order to officially kick this nasty habit, you should adopt some type of nail routine to keep your nails maintained and in good health! Giving yourself weekly manicures will help A LOT. Nail polish actually acts as a protective shield, so your nails will have the chance to grow, but it’s also important that you’re invested in the care of your nails. Think of it as making up for all those hours of gnawing your nails down to nubs.
5. Treat yo’self!
Take a page from the book of Donna and Tom and treat yo’ self for working so hard! Buy yourself a new nail polish after you’ve made it over the three-day hump. Maybe start experimenting with nail art, and splurge on some stripers and dotting tools. Hit up your local nail salon once a month for a fresh manicure. It’s harder to bite your finger nails when you’re spending money to make them look pretty.