Until about a year ago I’ve always had short nails. Sometimes intentionally, such as when I played the violin, other times not so deliberately, like when they were just too weak from the labor of working in restaurants.

But no more. I love having long nails- and even more so strong nails. But this doesn’t come naturally to me as it does for some, so today I’m unleashing all my tips for growing out your own little nubbins!

1. Moisturize
We borderline drown our hair and bodies- so why not your nails?

CND’s Solar Oil is my personal favorite. I leave it on my nightstand and before getting into bed cover my cuticles and nails with this stuff, let the product soak, then rub it in and follow up with a thick lotion. It makes a huge difference in the quality of my nails, and is very affordable. If you’re not into oil Burt’s Bees makes a good one as well- but no matter what you’re using make sure you’re keeping your nails and cuticles hydrated- especially in the winter!

2. Remove Polish Properly
Didn’t know there was a right and wrong way of doing this?

If removing regular polish try and use a non-acetone polish remover. Acetone will dry your nails out- making them brittle. As for gel or shellac, don’t just peel them off as tempting as it is otherwise you will strip your nails. So don’t pick or I’ll know- use a soak or a shellac remover.

3. Eating enough?
As with everything else, your diet can severely effect the strength of your nails. Upping your protein, biotin, and zinc can make a big difference in not only the quality of your nails- but also improve your skin and hair as well!

And speaking of eating- don’t evahhhh bite your nails. If you need some encouragement allow me to disgust you thoroughly. First of all you’re sticking who knows what in your mouth, which increases the chances of colds and other sicknesses. It’s also bad for your teeth and your nails! Additionally- if you have a wart, biting your nails can cause it to spread! When it doubt- just don’t put it on your mouth.

4. Treat Yoself.
Every so often I go ahead and treat myself to a manicure. Personally, I don’t fuxx with acrylics because those do a ton of damage- but getting the dead skin, cuticles, hang nails, and other junk removed will keep your nails at a good baseline. If you can’t/don’t want to splurge- you can also just have a DIY Manicure at home!

And that my friends is everything I do to keep my nails strong and long! Which is also what I aspire the rest of me to be too. Do you have any tips or secret things you do to keep your nails in tact? LEMMEKNOW!