13 Things You Should Absolutely Never Do To Your Nails

by Kate Taylor
Kate is a writer who laughs at her own jokes and likes to pour too much hot sauce on her food.

Whether your nail care routine involves the occasional clipping or the weekly manicure, we can all agree that having nice-looking nails is something to strive for and take pride in.

However, there are certain ways we treat our nails that aren’t doing them any favors, and it’s not just the obvious. For example, it should be known that following in the footsteps of some world record holders with 20-inch fingernails is not exactly encouraged.

We use our hands and nails everyday, but did you know that something as simple as forgetting to dry your hands could be causing your nails some serious damage?

I’ll be the first to admit that I don’t always take as good care of them as I probably should.

But after seeing some of these facts, I’m looking forward to my soon-to-be strong and healthy nails!

Did we miss any nail no-nos? Let us know in the comments and remember to SHARE this list with your friends on Facebook!

1. Bite Them

Biting nails

To state the obvious, biting your nails is a very bad habit we’re all aware of. Not only are there a lot of germs living under your fingernails that you don’t want in your mouth, it’s also bad for them.

Chewing and biting them for an extended period of time can lead to permanent damage in the form of unsightly bumps and ridges on your nails.

2. Use Old Polish

Open nail polish bottle

As many of us know, nail polish gets thicker and stringier the longer we have it. The changed texture makes it less likely to bind well to your nails and less likely to paint on smoothly. When a fresh coat leaves your nails looking like a mess, it’s time to get another bottle!

3. Cut Cuticles

3. Cut Cuticles

While it’s okay to push your cuticles down, it’s not okay to cut them. Their purpose is to provide a barrier for germs and to seal in moisture. Cutting can lead to infection and to dry, weak nails — not to mention that it hurts!

4. File Them Back And Forth

Filing nails

Filing your nails back and forth could cause tiny tears in your nails that can crack and break. Instead, file nails in one consistent direction to avoid damage.

5. Peel Off Polish

Chipped polish

When you peel off nail polish, you are peeling off a layer of your nail with it. This not only looks bad, but also will weaken your nails, which can be painful.

6. Use Them As A Tool

Opening lightbulb package

Have you ever broken a nail doing something like trying to take batteries out of a computer mouse? I just did and it is not fun. Use a real tool instead — your nails will thank you.

7. Change Polish At A Daily Rate

Painting nails

Using nail polish remover too often can strip the surface and dry out your nails.  A few times a week won’t lead to any permanent damage, but too often is not good for them.

8. Get Polish On The Surrounding Area

Closeup manicure

Nail polish is called nail polish for a reason. Contact with skin can cause irritation to the entire area and should be removed as soon as possible.

9. Buff Them More Than Once A Month

Nail buffer blocks

Buffing your nails strips the top layer, which is great for exfoliating purposes and achieving that shiny look. However, doing it too vigorously or too often can weaken your nails.

10. Pull Or Tear Fake Ones Off

Hot pink French manicure with accent glitter

Although it can be tempting to pull off fake nails, resist the urge! You can easily break your real nails, or worse, pull them off entirely. Following the instructions can save you a lot of pain and regret.

11. Forget To Dry Your Hands

Rolled up hand towel

If your hands are constantly damp from swimming or doing something like washing dishes, make sure to dry them right away. Fungus grows in damp environments and can develop more easily when nails aren’t dried properly.

12. Shake The Polish Bottle Before Applying

Hand modeling red polish with bottle

Shaking the nail polish bottle is something most of us do. However, doing so creates bubbles that will make smooth application difficult. Instead, gently rock the polish back and forth to mix without causing bubbles. Your nails will thank you!

13. Swim With A Manicure

Swimming pool

Although it may be tempting to get a manicure before a beach vacation, it might be better to skip it next time. Our nails naturally absorb water and the polish effectively traps a layer of water between the nail and the coat of polish. Water can cause your nails to weaken and can easily crack your manicure.

Can you think of any other nail don’ts? Please SHARE with your family and friends on Facebook!