Our nails are often overlooked when it comes to our daily self-care routine. As nails can easily be covered up with polish or enveloped in acrylics, it’s easy to be creative with them without actually paying attention to what lies beneath the color. Even the most beautiful of manicures can hide how healthy our nails really are. So how can you be sure your nails are at their best, even underneath the polish? We’re here to help you spot the signs of healthy nails and show you how you can keep them in perfect condition.
What do healthy nails look like?
Our nails consist of different parts, all of which need to be protected in order to maintain complete nail health:
• Nail plate: hard part of the nail containing ‘keratins’ that contribute to the health of your nails.
• Nail matrix: interior of the nail plate forming the nail ‘structure’.
• Nail bed: soft part that lies under the nail plate.
• Eponychium; thickened layer of living tissue which surrounds the nails and protects from bacteria and infection. Not to be confused with the cuticle – non-living tissue which grows along the nail plate.
• Hyponychium: soft living tissue found under the ‘top’ edge of the nail plate (under the tip of your nails) which protects the nail bed from bacteria and infection.
Healthy nails should be smooth, with no ridges, bumps or dents in the nail. While ridges may have no impact on your overall fingernail health, you may find them esthetically unappealing. Damaged nails can also have white spots on them, or lines which occur as a result of injury to the nail, but with new nail growth, these spots will disappear.
Nails which are healthy have to be both flexible and durable, to avoid breakage, and conditioned, so they can absorb moisture to stay both strong and supple.
You may notice that your nails become harder over time – this is normal. With age they become more brittle. However, if your nails have changed in texture and color and you can’t pinpoint a reason why, visit your dermatologist.
Are yellow nails healthy?
If you wear polish frequently, you might have noticed that your nails turn yellow over time. This is because the pigment in certain polishes can discolor your nails if you paint your nails often. This doesn’t necessarily mean your nails aren’t healthy – it just means you might need a break from the polish every once in a while!
Read more: when to take a nail polish break
This said, yellow nails can sometimes indicate an underlying health issue. New nail growth in healthy nails should not be yellow in color, so if your nails stay yellow as they grow, visit your dermatologist to see if there is any particular underlying cause.
How can I get healthy nails?
If you’ve noticed that your nails are showing signs of weakness, discoloration, or split and break frequently, give them a break from polish and apply a treatment which will both strengthen and hydrate for optimal fingernail health.
Choose a product which contains ingredients that boost the growth and strength of your nails, but which also highly moisturizes them. Healthy nails are both strong and flexible, so that they do not split or break.
ISDIN Si-Nails for healthier, stronger nails
Si-Nails’ formula promotes keratin and silicon, and contains cationic hyaluronic acid, which promotes cuticle moisturization. When your cuticles are dry, they can become more irritated. Moisturizing your cuticles helps to maintain the skin around the nails, contributing to overall nail health.
In a study of consumers who used Si-Nails, after 28 days, 100% of users reported they had smoother nails, while 97% reported that their nails were harder and grew faster. 93% of users reported that their nails were less brittle, and looked more attractive.
Read more: how to repair damaged and split nails
If you’re looking for healthier-looking, stronger nails which grow faster, try Si-Nails and begin to see the difference in 14 days. Don’t forget to include your nails in your daily skincare routine, and you’ll be well on your way to perfect, healthy nails!
Shop ISDIN Si-Nails ($29.95)
Sources and references:
Data on File; ISDIN Corp.; Morristown, NJ; 2019.