Weak, thin nails can be very frustrating. This is a guide about remedies for weak and thin fingernails.
By Caren E. 1
As a recent avid nail biter, I have found a solution to help grow nails that is not only inexpensive but natural and healthy. My nails were really thin (I was able to bend them without pain) and would chip and peel.
Here is my solution: I use NutriNail 5 to 7 day nail growth treatment twice a day (morning and evening). Once dry, I apply a Vitamin E nail and cuticle oil and massage into cuticles and nail surfaces. To help with strength, I use a nail hardener once a day.
These products can be found at your local Wal-Mart: NutriNail is around $4.50, Sally Hansen Nail and Cuticle Oil is around $5.00, and Sally Hansen Nail Hardener is also around $5.00.
Also, having a healthy diet does help nails grow faster and stronger. This includes drinking plenty of water! A vitamin regimen can also be beneficial as taking Biotin (Vitamin B6). Other supplements that have been shown to be successful are Keratin and prenatal vitamins for hair and nail growth since both hair and nails are made of Keratin.
It is also beneficial to gently file your nails (in the same direction) once a week. It does the same thing that a trim to your hair does; it stimulates the nail causing it to grow a little faster.
If you frequently place your hands in water, such as doing the dishes, it is advised to wear gloves because the water can strip nails of natural oils that are essential for growth and strength. The same can be said regarding nail polish removers and dark color polishes. I would recommend a 180 or 200 grit nail file (fine), which can be found at Wal-Mart, dollar stores, and beauty supply stores.
One last tip, if you have short nails or short nail beds, DO NOT TRIM CUTICLES! This can be detrimental to the nail and cause weakness. It is best to gently push cuticles back. This not only keeps the nails healthy and free of bacteria but also helps in the growth process. Do not worry if nails are translucent as they grow as Keratin is naturally translucent. If your nails are white, it could signify that are dry. In this instance, use a hand lotion to soften hands and hydrate nails.
To wrap this up:
I have received so many great tips and information from this site that I thought I was over-due for a pay-back.
Ladies, for those of us who have weak, soft, splitting fingernails, listen up! Buy a bottle of White Iodine (at Wal-Mart or any pharmacy-it can be ordered). It is also very inexpensive - $1.49.
Coat nails every day for a week and then a couple of times a week afterwards. It binds the protein of the nail (or something) but it will make them harder. You will not believe it. It truly works! Try it--you will love it!
By Nolasandy from New Orleans, LA
By tammy 2
I was wondering if anyone has any ideas for something that is good to use for soft, weak fingernails. Mine are so soft that I can bend them forward. Any ideas will be appreciated.
TC from Virginia
July 13, 2013
I found something at Walmart that does wonders for my nails - 5 to 7 day growth formula. It actually works, but I haven't found anything that works for Harding my nails. Please help.
I am trying to strengthen my weak and flimsy fingernails. I take vitamins daily (multivitamin, folic acid, biotin, and some prescription medications) and I can grow my nails, but they bend so easily.
I take a shower and they rip on the towel, or snag. I am tired of wearing bandages on my fingers due to the tearing. They bend so easily, that when I was in beauty school, I hated working on hair, since I knew that my nails would be torn to bits.
I have tried every strengthener known to man, I eat healthy, have recently lost 50+ pounds, and am not hard on my nails. I have polycystic ovary syndrome (a hormone and fertility problem) and weak nails don't run in the family, my sister has egg shell nails, they curl, and what not. I don't have a picture to go with this, I have overlays on my nails now, so they don't tear.
My nails don't need to breath, they are not alive, just like our hair, they both grow, but are not living things. So please refrain from telling me my nails need to breath, because they do not. I went to cosmetology school, and we learned all there is to know about nails.
Any tips thought would be great. I'm sick of spending $$ on no good products. I have OPI Nail Envy, and that does little good. Any ideas would be helpful, home remedies, or anything. I can't even soak my nails for a mani since they are so thin, they just tear off.
By Torrie from Vaughnsville, OH
June 22, 2012
*WARNING!* EliVal mentions that "vitamin B6, in much higher doses than needed for daily nutrition can be beneficial to nail growth. It is water soluble ...and there is no known issues at higher dosages." Sorry, but this is dangerously wrong. Too much B6 can cause permanent nerve damage.
The New England Journal of Medicine (1983, V309 pp 445-448) reported that supplemental doses as low as 500 mg/day can cause numbness & pain in extremities & even difficulty walking. Many women who have tried B6 for PMS symptoms have ended up with far worse problems than bloating or irritability (or thin nails). Yes, B6 is water soluble but it is NOT SAFE at high doses! Supplementation of no more than 200 mg/day is considered safe.
By Andy 1
What causes thin fingernails?
October 6, 2009
Try Nail Envy Nail Strengthener Original by OPI. Worked great for my thin nails
By Elena Kesh 1
I used to bite my nails for years, and now that I finally stopped, whenever I try to grow them out, they keep on breaking. Also they chip very easily. The tips of my nails aren't white but see through.
This is very annoying, and I can't leave them unpainted. I read that this may be caused due to lack of calcium, but I drink a lot of milk, and it doesn't seem to help. What do I have to do to improve my nails and make them stronger?
I wasn't able to include a photo right now, but I'll try to if that'll help.
By Ekikate123 from Skopje, Macedonia
July 14, 2011
First, check with your doctor to see if there is an underlying medical condition. But otherwise . . .
Two inexpensive and highly effective treatments; 1) vitamin B6, (biotin) 2.5 mg once daily and, 2) nail/cuticle oil, this will keep the oils in the nails and the water out, water actually splits the nails.
The nail oil needs to be brushed on (it takes about 15 seconds) and around the cuticle, nail bed, tip, under nail and skin surrounding the nail at least twice a day, let sit for one minute then lightly rub into surrounding fingertips/fingers/hands, 1 hour after hands are not in water, and 1/2 hour after, keep hands/nails out of water. (While first treating your nails wear gloves as much as possible. Try to bathe or do dishes 30 minutes AFTER the oil application.)
"Oil" nails minimally twice a day; many find the most convenient times first thing in morning and then late afternoon an hour before preparing food (to keep nails out of water). I make my own nail oil, in old empty nail oil bottles, adding a little vitamin E & a little antibacterial/antifungal (like teatree oil) shake and you've saved yourself 8 dollars a bottle! While first applying the nail oil, you need to grow out the old damaged nail, the nails grow in fibers that once ripped or split keep moving into the quick (like a run in your hose), so keep them trimmed very, very short, and file with a nail tek crystal file (or better) until the damage is grown out; then you can grow some length and you should be much better than you're at now.
For upkeep use nail oil (or with nail polish on the cuticle and under nail) about twice a week, you'll soon know what your particular nails require. I also do hot manicures once or twice a week, I just zap a little oil in a tiny bowl for 30 seconds and soak fingertips for a minimum of 5 minutes, it is very relaxing. (PS buy the oil less expensively in a food store, you can use almond, olive (I do not like this smell), grapeseed, or soybean oil, whatever vegetable oil you prefer.) I also save my manicure oil (storing it in a small bottle) and give my hair a hot oil treatment once or twice a month, it's a great hair conditioner. So I actually use every drop.
These both will work for most people, but both also will take time. Vitamin B6 treatment can take 6 months to a year (you already know how fast or slow your nails grow) to see an increase in nail thickness. Oil treatment, you may see improvement within weeks, but dramatic within months.
I just took the false nails off my finger nails and my nails are tender and weak. What can I do to strengthen them?
By Audrey W.
February 4, 2012
I take a biotin supplement, the stuff is fantastic for hair and nails! I used to get mine in WalMart, and I also found HoofMaker there.
It's officially a hoof treatment for horses but is perfectly safe for human use on finger nails. You'll find it in the pet section.
Use a Q-Tip to apply it to your nails just before bed and let it soak in overnight-very quick results to repair a damaged nail bed. Huge economical jar, too, and it smells great!
I got that tip, btw, from a nail tech years ago when acrylic nails were the big rage. I was so excited when I was having the things applied-until she warned me that I should save myself some money and get HoofMaker instead the salon's hideously expensive ointment to repair the inevitable nail bed damage when the nails came off. Nail bed damage?! Unfortunately all ten nails had already been applied.
Hoo boy, I did get the HoofMaker, wore the nails until they could safely be removed (about a week I think), and then I never had those UN-fabulous fakes applied again!
My fingertips hurt for several days after those things came off. The HoofMaker did help, easing the bed and healing my nails quickly. Plus I noticed the HoofMaker did really nice things for my nails and the nail bed after the healing was complete. Been using that or a similar product ever since, and I have lovely strong nails. Here in the UK I get Hoof-Treat from the tack shop, looks, smells, and works the same as the HoofMaker.
February 4, 2012
I've never really been into painting my nails or growing them long. Probably because I was always building something instead. However, two of my older sisters did and both were beauticians. They would buy Knox Gelatin made just for fingernails. They would mix it with water and drink it. They did have lovely nails. You can buy that in a grocery store in with the regular Jello.
What can I do to make my nails stronger and grow faster? I got my nails done for my sister's wedding. I didn't want to go because I knew it would damage my nails, but I went. And now I'm facing the consequences. My nails are really thin, they break off easily, and they don't grow hardly at all.
July 14, 2011
The biotin suggestion is one I use (for my hair actually but it helps with nails, too), but since you sign yourself 'horselover' I'm surprised you don't know about using hoof conditioner on your nails to strengthen them. It REALLY works, and quick too!
Apply it liberally with a cotton swab to your nails and cuticles at night before bed; apply a thin coat with the swab several times during the day-you'll have lovely, strong nails in about a week.
You can buy it at tack stores and pet centres like PetsMart. I used to buy it at Wal-Mart in the pet section but I live in the UK now, and don't know if Wal-Mart still sells horse gear in their pet aisles. It's not terribly expensive, doesn't stain, and has a nice fragrance no matter where you buy it-the stuff I get at the horse centre here in the UK looks, acts, and smells just like the stuff I used to get at Wal-Mart.
By Mary perry 1
How to make fingernails thicker and stronger?
February 20, 2015
You better eat dried fish and small fresh fish to add more calsium and protein to your food. Take supplements usually contain vitamins A, C, D, E, as well as many B vitamins, and folic acid, zinc, iron, calcium and biotin. Making sure you have a good intake of omega 3 oils can also reduce your risk of weak, brittle nails.
My nails are super short and thin. If I grow them out, they don't stick to my actual finger which makes them super easy the bend. When I do grow them out, which for me is not even enough to reach the tips of my fingers, they are white and brittle.
August 26, 2015
Louise B, no I have no serious health problems other than frequent migraines which I don't think would have anything to do with my nails. Thank you!!!:)
Why are the fingernails on my ring fingers weaker than the others?
Mary from Stockton, CA
By guest (Guest Post) Flag
February 20, 2007
It may be that you are allergic to nickel, which is a component of the metal in some rings, or that you have left traces of jewelry cleaner on your jewelry. You can strenghthen your nails over time by lightly (and I stress lightly) tapping them on a hard surface for a short period of time daily. This helps improve circulation to your nail beds. When using a nailfile, look for one made with diamond dust called Diamond Deb, which is much finer, less harmful to your nails and much faster than ordinary files.
By poohkitty 1
I had really badly bitten nails, they were horrible! If you want really strong long gorgeous nails, here's my secret. First, stop all nail bitting, nail polish removers and dark colored nail polish. Try more nude colors, they won't stain nails or have harsh ingredients.
Now that's done, you are ready. This is what I do for my nails; Biotin and a nail treatment top coat with a garlic base. I take 5000 mcg of biotin daily. My brand is cheap Rexall, $5.00 at Dollar General and my garlic base top coat (G1Nail treatment) is only $1.25 at a beauty supply store. I also soak my nails in water with salt and any vegetable oil I have on hand. I soak them at least twice a day, soaking for 15 minutes day and night. That's only 30 minutes out of your day. It's worth it, your nails need to refresh daily. However, I recommend olive oil for a more better result.
I massage my nails with a vibrating tool, anything that vibrates. I do this at any time of the day. I bought one from Walgreens. It's use is for stress but I just hold it when my hands are free. I find that it also makes my hair grow. True Story LBVS! The vibrations helps circulate the blood in your nails and hands. Although you must continue to massage a oil base into the cuticles and use a moisturizer to keep nails nourished.
Drink plenty of water as well. The biotin intake will need more water intake daily, around 64 oz. Water is also a good source for growing anything! I hope this helps. My nails have been growing for two weeks now with my own system and it really works. Try and enjoy the beautiful nails God wants you to have. God Bless everyone (:
My finger nails just all of the sudden are really thin. They have always been hard as a rock and healthy. What happened to them? or what is the cause of them to getting so thin, weak, and transparent?
June 4, 2012
My nails used to be hard too and I've found now that I've gotten older they have become more brittle. Not certain but I think it may come with age in my case.
I try and grow my nails out and they do, but at a point they just break. What can I do? Also as it grows it pushes towards my nail bud.
I have very thin nails and growing them naturally is out of the question because as they grow passed the finger tips they'll bend back and forth, break or tear (Very painful). I had acrylic nails for a few years, but found that to be too expensive because my nails grow so fast, I would have to go in every nine days to have them redone. Does anyone know of a home remedy that will make my nails thicker and stronger, or am I doomed to have these thin nails all my life?
Crystal from Arvada, CO
When I had my acrylic nails removed, the person who did my nails recommended something called "Nail Tek" (Not Naitique)- it's like a clear polish. You can usually find it in nail salons or those freestanding cosmetics stores you find in strip malls. About Ten Bucks a bottle, but it lasts me many months. The directions say use it daily, but I apply it about twice a week and it seems to help. (08/17/2006)
A few years ago my Doctor looked at my throat and said he could tell by my tongue that I was deficient in some vitamin/s. Told me to start taking Centrum Silver and never stop.
A few months later I realized it had affected my nails, they are much stronger, seldom split. Since that was the only change I think it must be the Centrum Silver. (08/17/2006)
I found that a very positive side effect from taking glucosimine chondroitin is that I am able to grow long, hard fingernails. (08/17/2006)
i have the same problem. but my nails also peeled off in layers in addition to bending like paper. the best product i've ever used (and will only use from now on) is a Sally Hanson's brand nail hardener that comes in the gold opaque bottle. it's a nail hardener/thickener treatment. you apply it once a week like clear nail polish. you can polish over it with color. it really works, makes your nails really hard. in the hopes of being able to grow my nails past the ends of my fingertips like my mom and sis, i've wasted a fortune on trying other nail harders/treatments too numerous to count (including some other Sally Hanson products)which did not work. this is by far the best. i'll never switch (unless they stop making it.) it isn't cheap, but it is cheaper than manicures or artificial nails. i usually buy mine at chain drugstores for about $5 per bottle, but watch the ads for sales and coupons. it doesn't stay on our shelves long. incidentally, i too used to wear artificial nails, adn when i removed them i found my real nail beds were seriously damaged for at least the next 6 months (or until the entire nail surface grew out). hope this works for you too. good luck! (08/17/2006)
By debbie in sc
I, too, have thin, flimsy nails and I have found that Biotin helps strengthen them. I was taking 1000 mcg/day, but I'm going to start on 3000/day to see if it will work faster. (08/17/2006)
White iodine, purchased or can be ordered at most pharmacies. It is called white, but is actually clear. Put on nail bed daily for a week and then a couple of times a week. It will bond with the protein. I've used it for years. My late husband was a pharmacist. (08/17/2006)
I have heard, though never tried it, that gelatine helps strengthen fingernails. You drink it, not paint it on the nails! you dissolve gelatine in hot water then drink the solution, sorry I can't be more specific.
Try Prenatal Vitamins. Works on thin hair also.
Same idea as Centrum Silver. Drugstores have sales on them periodically. (08/17/2006)
Thank you all for your suggestions! (08/17/2006)
By Crystal Ball
Get "The Hoof Maker" from a store that sells products for horses. Massage into your nails and cuticles. You can even use it over nail polish. It softens the cuticles and hardens your nails. It's not expensive, (08/18/2006)
My fingernails were very thin and sounded a lot like yours. Apple cider vinegar is my remedy. I drink 2 teas. in the morning before breakfast. It takes some getting used to, but put some water with it and swallow it fast. Maybe the vinegar pills would be easier to swallow.:) Be sure to brush your teeth after you drink it. (08/18/2006)
By Monita Paulson
you need to go to the dr. there is a syndrome that i just got told i have and i have the same problem it is (EDS) it is a long name and i can say it just not spell it. i hate it but there is not much that can be done and one of it's many different types can kill you. it causes thin skin lumpy feel to your skin when you rub it, it causes joint pain and "Double jointedness. you can't heal well, thin nails, and a rudderness to your skin it is very streachy. it is worth finding out about. (08/19/2006)
I find that somehow BioZinc by Soloray, supplements
make my nails grow, stop toothaches overnight, and
generally help my immune system. I take 50 mg. overnight if they get weak or thin, or if my tooth begins to ache. Don't know why it works, but it does.
I don't take it daily, however, just for about a few
days to relieve the problems. Also, my cousin told
me to switch dishwashing liquid to Ultra Dawn FOR MY NAILS TO GROW, which WORKS!!! It doesn't help them to grow, just doesn't damage nails as other chemicals and dishsoaps do. I wear gloves when using bleach or bath cleansers. I wash my hands all day long and find that if I dare buy/use anything ELSE, I regret it and have to go back to the Ultra Dawn (blue). God bless. (08/19/2006)
My nails are very strong and I hardly ever brake a nail. I do take vitamins reguarly but also I use a product by Vaseline Intensive Care called "Healthy Hand & Nail" It hydrates hands & strengthens nails and has alpha hydroxy w/keratin and vitamin E. I've been using it for years. Just keep it somewhere handy and use a couple times a day. Your hands and nails should start to look better and you also will have great cuticles that you never have to push back....I just rub into my hands well and put extra on ea nail, making sure to rub into the cuticles.
I probably have the opposite problem....nails that grow fast and I seem to have to cut them often. I used to love to let them grow and keep them nice and usually painted but since adopting two children, I am too busy for that and have my hands in water too much so I keep them relatively short.
The vitamins I take are calcium, a good multi, Vit E, Vit C, magnesium and a fiber capsule. I would imagine that the vitamins help my nails but this hand lotion really helps a lot too and I think the skin on my hands looks better and younger too!
Good luck! (08/20/2006)
Exact same problem! I use Burts Bees Lemon Cuticle Creme, but vitamin E works WONDERS!!!! (08/20/2006)
I also have very thin (paper thin) fingernails. I have to be very careful if i scratch an itch because my fingernails will cut my skin. my skin is also very thin . could i have a vitamin deficiency? (08/24/2006)
By Cathy in Ca.
Try eating a jelly cube each day or jelly babies. (09/02/2006)
Try Sally Hansen's Nail Miracle. You can get it at any drugstore. It comes in a gold bottle and it really is a miracle! Good luck. (09/05/2006)
I had my thyroid taken out 3 years ago. Since then, on different occasions, I've been deficient in Vit. B-12 and on Calcium. My diabetes medication deletes my intake of Vit. B-12. Also, for some reason my body won't absorb the calcium that my body takes in, for this the Dr. put me on Calcitrol. The Calcitrol plus finding Vit. B-12 + Folic Acid cherry flavored lozenges to hold under my tongue after meals has helped tremendously with my nails. (09/15/2006)
Hi. I can certainly relate to most all of these fingernail issues! I've been trying to grow my nails since I was (believe it or not...) 12 years old! I'm now 38 and still on the mission to long, thick, healthy nails.
Wow, I thought I've tried everything but after reading this post, I'm going out to get the vinegar, the vasaline Intensive Care, the Biozine, the Hoofmaker, and the white iodine! I'll try ANYTHING!
I've been experimenting with all kinds of vitamins and herbs for the past 7 months; what works for me, what doesn't.
I will be writing a blog on my experiences in the future (if or when I succeed) to hopefully reach the people who don't want to wear acrylic nails or wraps.
I refuse to be doomed through heredity... somewhere out there is the answer!
At the present time, I'm taking Biotin, prenatal vitamins, calcium vitamin, magnesium, Horsetail, Silica, Borage oil, Omega-3, Gluclosamine and Nutra Nail's Green Tea Oil. It's too early to tell yet if they're working.
These supplements are just a piece of the second trial of my experiment and I also want to mention that I give myself a healthy manicure every 15 days with 2 coats of polish.
I did the Knox Geletin religiously for 4 months... IT DID NOT WORK. I have no health problems, yet my nails are still paper thin, soft, brittle, peel like an onion. When they break, the crack begins about 1/4 of the way down from the top of my finger (my nails don't usually grow past that point) and it's very discouraging.
I know that there are more people out there like me and I really want to help someone if I am able to find a solution on my own; there is not a lot of help on this issue over the Internet that isn't promoting the latest and greatest nail product.
If there is anyone out there who has healthy, thick nails like horse hooves, please feel free to share with us.
Thank you, everyone, for your time!!
Shari in Michigan (12/29/2006)
I have been taking a 5000 mg. Biotin capsule (not tablets) a day that I purchase from Wal-mart (120 capsules for about $10.00). I started taking Biotin for my nails and notice an immediate improvement. Most likely the nail bed since nails take four mos. to grow out. I always had very fine hair that wouldn't stay comb. My hair has improved dramatically, although it is still problem hair. My skin looks a lot better as well. Hope this helps my fine hair sisters (12/29/2006)
I have had Thin nails for a while, I was tested and had a Vitamin B-12 dificiency, I investigated that and discovered my colon cancer. I had that removed and my nails got better for a while, but it is hard to maintain the B-12 I had gotten injections of the B12 which comes from the 2 feet of colon I have left. It can take a long time for the body to recover. My hair was breaking too. CHECK YOU B 12 please everyone. (03/14/2007)
Does anyone know of any fingernail strengthening product that really works? All my life I've had pathetic weak, short nails and it seems like I've tried everything but nothing really works so I can grow nice nails of my own. If there's anything out there that works, I'd love to know about it. Thanks to all.
Bonnie from Tuckerton, NJ
I buy the suave extreme strength for your hair. It's a leave in treatment (that's around 2.50 a bottle), and I rub it onto my fingernails every day. It's for strengthening weak hair, but hair and nails are made up of the same thing, and I find that it works tremendously. I can even use my fingernails to open soda cans now. It is definitely a product I will always keep on hand. (07/17/2007)
You can dip your fingernails in Glycerin for 10 min everyday before going to bed. You can also dip your nails in extra virgin Olive Oil for 15 min everyday before going to bed. It'll really strengthen your nails. (07/18/2007)
I have found that cuticle massage cream does a great job at both strengthening nails AND getting them to grow with a consistent application of 2 times per day. Apply not only to your cuticles, but also your nails.
And it doesn't take much. This 4 oz. container has lasted me several months, at a cost of only $2. Look for the sales. (07/28/2007)
For my weak, peeling nails, I soak them in Extra Virgin Olive Oil for just a couple of minutes once or twice a week, and it really works to help strengthen them. No expensive cuticle creams required. And you'll probably find it in your kitchen cupboard! (09/01/2007)
Try taking coral calcium (has to be coral). Takes about 3 mos., but taking 1-2 a day will give you long, strong fingers. (03/14/2008)
WARNING: Please never use Nail Tek!
I have very thin and weak nails, too. And after years of silk wraps and nail treatments, the lady that does my nails put Nail Tek on them. Everyone agreed that it was the best thing they had ever tried. I should have looked at their nails first (they all had pretty normal nails to begin with). After about 3-4 minutes, my nails felt really hot. Then came the throbbing pain. It truly felt like someone was continuously taking a hammer to my fingers. This pain lasted a little more than an hour (even though they took off the product when I complained it felt hot). The only relief I got was when I literally passed out from the pain!
Please, if you truly have thin nails that can flex easily, never use Nail Tek! (07/28/2008)
I have weak damaged nails from long time acrylic and a nail biting habit. Recently I came across a book called, "Uncommon Cures for Everyday Ailments" from the Editors of Bottom Line/Health. It says, "For stronger, longer nails spread Castor oil into nails and cuticles every night before bed to reduce cracking and breaking. For flexible nails use Vaseline or Crisco before bed rubbing into nails and cuticles.
Also, it says to rub Retin A or Renova a little bit on nails for cell regeneration. Or if nails grow slowly, try rubbing them with Comfrey oil (a cell re-generator, it can help speed up the growth process giving you longer, stronger nails).
I like someone's quote above to try Suave extreme strength leave in treatment because that's right. Hair and nails are made from the same stuff. This article in the book also recommends to use latex gloves while washing dishes and working with chemicals, because water and chemicals damage the fingernails. I've tried the Castor oil as moisturizer, it has been healing the nail bed damage from years of acrylic use. Thank you for all your suggestions. I will try them too. Lots of luck to all of you. (09/29/2008)
I bought the White Iodine yesterday. It has a strong smell, but I decided to put it on before I go to bed so I won't have to concentrate on the smell. I was wondering if I can use this on top of nail polish? This is the first time in 31 years that I see my natural nails long. I'm so excited to keep the length, but I want them to be strong at the same time. (12/28/2008)
I have been biting my nails for the longest time and finally I stopped, but my nails always seemed flimsy and broke very easy. My grandma always had strong nails and I asked her how to get my nails that strong, and her answer was simple and really inexpensive; garlic! She told me to stab my nails in the garlic and rub them on the top of my nails, and to be honest, it really works! No lie. Only one set back, the smell! (02/04/2009)
By Former Nail Bitter
My wife and I started drinking green tea and dramatically reducing the carbohydrates in our diets (no potatoes, rice, less bread, less sugar) a couple of months ago. We both experienced a totally unexpected result; that our fingernails became substantially thicker and stronger. Was it the tea or the diet change? We don't know. Also, rubbing oil (olive, Vaseline, etc.) into the nails (at bedtime is best) will moisturize your nails, resulting in making them look terrific and also making them more flexible. (02/16/2009)
I had the same problem. I apply finger nail polish to them. The "Hard as Nails" kind by Sally Hansen, clear or colored. It helps protect the nails so they want break. It's worth the money. (06/08/2009)
Regarding the post that says "Please never use Nail Tek!":
This is one of the best nail products even better than OPI. I think the problem was years of silk wraps. I highly recommend the Nail Tek line, as it's well worth it. You should use the oil they sell and the ridge filler next, followed by whatever clear coat meets your nail's needs. You can get them at the Christmas Tree stores now. The product has helped my nails, and I have turned the product on to many girls at work. None of them reported any problems. (11/20/2009)
I have a really bad habit of biting my nails. They are really thin and don't grow at all. Does anyone know some home remedies to get my nails to grow and be the healthy, beautiful nails that I have never had?
By Ashley from Philadelphia, PA
Been there, done that. I picked up the nasty, dirty habit from my mother. She bit her fingernails all her life. Being the little girl that I was, I mimicked her.
I'm now in my 60's and I've made it a point to stop biting my nails. I keep my hands busy crocheting or either knitting something so I'm not tempted to bite them.
Here's a website that I think will help you.
Keep "Hard as nails "polish on them and take your 1 a day vitamin at least 2 times a week, or more if you can. They make my head hurt if I take more. Good luck. (12/08/2009)
I found that adding fiber to my diet really helped my brittle, peeling fingernails. They look good now. I take a glass of Metamucil every day too. (12/10/2009)
I am 57 and it wasn't until recently that my nails became much more hard and not brittle. It's from not having enough stomach acid to dissolve the minerals in your food, so it can get into your system. There are probably other things going on, cause it effects every part of the body, from your skin, all the way to your marrow. Do some research on the net. (12/10/2009)
By c t
My nails split, peeled and were thin, then my doctor suggested I take a One-a-day vitamin in the morning and 1 in the evening. The vitamins were for another purpose, but they did wonders for my nails. (12/10/2009)
I had an overactive thyroid. When I had that taken care of, the nails then got very strong. Have your thyroid checked. Also, calcium helps. (12/11/2009)
By Mary C.
My hair stylist was giving me advice on growing out my hair. He said to take a biotin supplement (I found it at the drug store). He told me I would notice a difference in my nails first. I have been taking it for about a month and my nails do seem to be growing a little faster than normal. (12/12/2009)
Garlic! My dad finally got me to use it so I would stop biting my nails and it works! Been using it for years. Get one clove and press your nails in it. If your nails are not long enough, make a little slit on it so that the juice gets on your nails. Get the garlic juice all over your nails. Leave on for at least 10 minutes, but I would leave it on for longer so that you don't bite them. I do this about once a week now that my nails are strong, but for starters I would do it every day for at least 2 weeks. I also use clear garlic nail polish, about $2 in the beauty supply store. Hope this helps. (12/27/2009)
My nails are so soft that they bend. I've never been able to grow them long because they just wear away. They don't even have enough strength to break or chip.
I've tried gelatin, dozens of nail hardeners, gloves, supplements for cartilage, nails, hair, teeth, etc., but to no avail. In desperation once, I applied Tarzan Grip (glue) to the tips to give them strength. I also tried acrylic overlays, and apart from having no thickness to the nail when roughing it up, I developed a really bad fungal infection and I lost a nail.
It took me almost 12 months to recover and the resulting damage to the nail bed hasn't helped matters. I guess I just drew the short straw. Any suggestions?
By Rebecca from Gold Coast, Australia
I had the same problem. A friend told me about Hard as Nails polish. It works if you keep it on your nails, good luck. (01/21/2010)
I don't have much advice as I have problem nails, too. What is your occupation? Maybe that affects your nails. Last resort would be to see your doctor for a check-up. I believe an underactive thyroid contributes to weak nails. (01/21/2010)
I'm sorry to tell you that the only thing you can do to make your fingernails stronger is to eat a healthy diet and to take a good multivitamin supplement. A quality calcium supplement like calcium citrate (which is easily absorbed in the body) can also help. Gelatin protein doesn't work, that was just an old wives tale from the 1970s!
The worst thing for nails is to cover them with acrylic nails or nail polish. Nails need to breath and covering them will only make them more brittle, turn yellow, and crack more. Leave your nails bare for a couple of months and see if that helps.
Be thankful if your nails are a bit thin, because if they are too hard, then won't bend and can chip and snap off more easily when you accidentally hit something with them.
If your nails are really, really thin and unhealthy, that usually signifies something is going on with your body and you should be checked out by a doctor. (01/21/2010)
Here's a link that explains soft and brittle nail causes and offers suggestions how to correct.
One thing that works for me (if I stick with it) is to use a light emery board on your nails, on the top of the nail as well as the ends. This will also get rid of ridges. It seems to stimulate the nail somehow and encourage it to grow. There is a type of "rubberized" nail board to use afterwards which will make your nails shine. (01/23/2010)
I use Nutra Nail5 to 7 Day Growth Calcium Formula. I get it on drugstore.com (a fantastic site); not sure where else you can find it.
I see instant results, as in, less than a week. I bought it because I eat healthily and take vitamins and still have always had thin nails. I also use Burt's Bees cuticle conditioner, so that the new found hardness does not become brittle. I think any conditioning agent would work for that though. The combination has resulted in gorgeous new nails in a total of 3 weeks. Not bad. (01/28/2010)
You can easily get your fingernails health back, massage your nails daily with sunflower oil, also soak in sunflower oil daily for about 15 min. (02/14/2010)
Calcium! After nearly three years of peeling nails. I had almost no nail left after clipping away the peeling ends, nothing even to the ends of my fingers. I realized I was not getting enough calcium of high quality. I don't do dairy. I did some web research and began taking a high dose of better quality calcium, stopped putting anything on my nails (I faithfully tried every brand of strengthener), and now I have strong nails. A good buffing brings a lovely shine. No extras needed, except keeping nails moisturized 3-4 times daily. (08/05/2010)
Honestly, I have the exact same problem. I am 22 and have not ever been able to grow my nails. Oh I have tried everything! Prenatals, castor oil, citizen oil, and nail strengthener. Everything! I have learned a little trick though. Try using a few drops of super glue underneath your nail. I tried on the top, but it's still just as flimsy. It feels funny at first, but it dries clear and keeps my paper thin nails from bending and breaking. (03/17/2011)