Nails and skin are the first to show signs of vitamin and mineral deficiency. Nails start to tear more easily and hands take on a flaky, scaly, alligator skin look.
In years past, the majority of women wore hats to shade their faces from the aging effects of the sun. They wore long sleeves when gardening. Moisturizing and whitening creams were slathered on their hands and cotton gloves were worn when sleeping. Gloves were also worn during the day – not only for fashion but also to protect the hands from every day wear and tear on skin and nails, and from the harmful effects of the sun. Today, those carrying on that tradition would be considered the minority.
Women today spend hundreds of dollars on youth-enhancing facial moisturizers. They take pride in their faces and hair being beautiful. But if you look closely at their hands, you may see that those hard-working clappers have been lacking in love.
Here are some helpful and simple tips to help you wave bye-bye to those rough and ragged hands.
1. Wash your hands. It’s simple. Keep your hands clean and nails free of dirt and debris by using a nail brush to scrub away the accumulation of dirt from the day. Be sure to use a moisturizing, anti-bacterial and soap. You only get one pair of hands, so work hard to keep them germ free.
2. Moisturize. Try using a moisturizing hand cream to maintain elasticity and keep hands soft and supple. For added protection, use a cream specially formulated for nails. Other alternatives to creams are tea tree oil, jojoba oil, and good old petroleum jelly. If nails continue cracking, it may be due to a vitamin B deficiency. Consult your physician before taking prescription or over the counter medication.
3. Wear gloves. Using moisturizer with sunscreen helps keep your hands feeling soft and looking youthful, while gloves offer added protection from UV rays.
4. Exfoliate. Exfoliating hands helps get rid of dead skin cells, uncovering soft skin, and ridding the skin of impurities.
5. Avoid hot water. Prolonged exposure to water of any temperature washes away your skin’s protective layer of oil. Hot water dries out the skin, use tepid water when cleansing hands. For tub baths, avoid extremely hot water. Try running a warm bath instead. Both tub baths and showers should be limited to 10 minutes, no more than once a day.
6. Love your cuticles. Cuticles offer protection for your nails against bacteria. If they are rough and ragged, painful hang-nails will develop. Soften the cuticles by using cuticle oil twice a day. Refrain from removing your cuticles. Instead, push the cuticles back by soaking your hands into warm water and then using a soft orange wood stick.
7. Always buff your nails. Buffing nails helps rid them of ridges, yellowing, and makes them nice and smooth.
8. Stop biting your nails. Biting your nails leaves them cracked, uneven, and with swollen, angry cuticles. Don’t be a nail nibbler. Stamp out a bad habit and start a healthier habit instead. Whenever you feel the need to gnaw on those nails, brush your teeth. It will give you something productive to do with your hands. For those times when itâs not practical to carry a full-size toothbrush and paste, try a disposable, one-use brush. They cleanse as well as freshen your breath.
9. Apply a base coat to your nails. Applying polish directly to nails can leave them brittle. Always apply a base coat before applying polish.
Finally, do yourself a favor. Treat your hands nails to professional nail treatment occasionally. This will help to strengthen the nails and maintain their beautiful appearance. Who doesn’t like to be pampered occasionally? So, kick back and put your hands in someone else’s hands. Stay beautiful!