A Nail Guide for Nail Biters
Struggling with a nailbiting habit and want to get out of it? Here are some tips to conquer it once and for all!
1. Figure out the cause
It might be a good idea to figure out why you are biting your nails. Is it recent or a lifelong habit? Does it coincide with stressful times? Have there been changes in your skin and nail health which have prompted you to be aware of your nails and therefore prone to fiddling with them? (I found that when my thyroid went on the fritz my nails gave up and became brittle). Chat to your doctor if you are worried!
2. Set a goal
Sometimes the best way to be motivated to make a change is by setting a date in the near future to reach. You could set a date a week from now with the goal of reaching that date without having bitten your nails at all. Next, set a date two weeks from then with no biting, and implement a maintenance routine. Have a special date (perhaps 6 weeks from now) where you plan a manicure for your newly-grown, healthy nails.
3. Invest in treatment products
Give your nails a helping hand and a strong barrier so they can start to rebuild. I really like the OPI Original Nail Envy Nail Strengthener Color ($17.95). The Nail Inc. Nailkale Superfood Base Coat ($15) is a great option too. By having polish on your nails you might be less likely to nibble them, especially if you know the polish is working to improve the nail integrity. It can really help you get past the first few millimeters when you start to see that ever-encouraging growth and strength.
4. Moisturize and nourish
Dry nails are prone to brittleness, peeling, and breakage. Dry hands can also cause dryness around the edges of the nails, tempting you to bite or peel the flaking skin off. This leads to redness and rawness around the nails as well as damaged cuticles.
Keep a nourishing hand cream by your bed and apply it every night. Moisturize your hands after doing housework (all those drying cleaning agents!) and rub the product into your cuticles and nail beds.
5. Keep a file handy at all times
I find that if there’s a rough edge, corner or a part of the nail which is barely hanging on, I will bite or pick at it. However, if the nails are soft smooth and without sharp corners I don’t feel compelled to fuss with them. Keep a good nail file in your bag so you can smooth out the edges and round out the corners when you need to. This will also help you to feel more in control of your nails and more dedicated to their growth, therefore helping to discourage nibbling!
My favorite nail file which I use is the Manicare Crystal Nail File, but it may be hard to source outside of Australasia. A great alternative and very similar option is the ClassyLady Professional Glass Nail File ($11.83 approx.)
Have any extra tips? Let us know in the comments below!