Dermatologist Explains 10 Possible Reasons Why Your Nails Are Brittle and Dry

Dermatologist Explains 10 Possible Reasons Why Your Nails Are Brittle and Dry

May 29, 2021

More than revealing how fashionable you are, your hands can say so much about your health especially your nails. Nails also lose moisture the way the skin does causing them to feel weak and, brittle and dry. There are so much more in your nails that meets your eyes, what you see in the surface is not the whole nail, there are more to it inside. The nail grows from a matrix or the living tissue below your cuticle. It supports the nail growth in your fingers.

If you always have your nails painted, you will notice that it sometimes begin to break and that is something that you shouldn’t ignore. A number of reasons can be the cause of that and here are some of them.

Nail Biting

People bite their nail for a number of reasons and some could be due to nervousness, out of concentration, boredom and many more and it makes the nail break easily. The saliva which is made of digestive enzymes that are meant to dissolve food also dissolves the nail cuticle that will eventually make them weak and brittle. If you like biting your nails, it’s better to keep them short.

Lack of Iron

Iron is an important mineral that your nails need too. If your diet is low on iron it will cause your nail to lack oxygen. Hence the reason for depressed nails or conclave nails, low iron level will cause stunt nail growth. Make it a habit to include iron-rich foods in your diet such as beef, beans, spinach, legumes, oyster and dark chocolate.

Too much texting and typing

You may not notice it but too much typing on keyboard or smartphone screen can cause damage to your nails. It can split, fray, and fracture your nails over time. If your work is consist of mainly typing or you just love spending too much time on your phone, its best to trim the nails regularly so your finger does most of the contact rather than the nails itself.

Not regularly applying hand cream

Hand cream is important not only to your hands but also to your nails. If you always wash your hands, it is a must to apply hand cream after washing as the water would dry out your skin. If your skin is dry, so is the cuticle and it has a domino effect on the matrix of the nails. Lack of moisture in the hands can cause splitting, breaking and cracking of the nails. Applying fast-absorbing lotion is the best solution to this and do this often and not just in the morning.

Using too much hand-sanitizer

The high alcohol content of hand-sanitizer will make your nails brittle. If you really need to use a hand-sanitizer, try to avoid the area near the nails until you can wash your hands with water. Also, following it with a hand cream will rebalance the moisture.

Putting Nail Polish for a long time

Nail polish contains drying ingredients that sap moisture in the nail plate causing it to become weak. That drying effect doesn’t stop even after the polish has hardened. Give the nails a few days of downtime before having it repainted.

Acetone nail polish removers is not your nail’s best friend

Acetone strips out the natural oil as it contains solvent that is very drying to the nails. Soy-based acetone-free nail polish remover is the best option as it will leave the nails moisturized.

Do not ignore your cuticles

Cuticle snippers do more harm than good as it bit the skin at the base of the nails that protects the grout between the nail and skin. Cutting the cuticle is like removing that grout and when there is no more grout left, nothing will prevent the water from entering and it can cause infection. Tame the cuticles gently by using a washcloth rather than cutting them.

Lack of Vitamin B

Biotin or Vitamin B is a vitamin that’s known to strengthen nails and hair is very important if you want to keep your nails at its healthiest state.  Taking vitamin B daily will improve the nail strength and reduce brittleness after taking it regularly for 6-9 months. Include vitamin B-enriched food on your diet such as eggs, salmon, beef, almonds and sweet potatoes. Just keep in mind that result can take up to several months to be obvious and be sure to talk to your doctor before taking it.

Always apply lotion before polishing your nails

Apply a little hand lotion before polishing your nail so base coat will not directly hit the naked nails. The lotion will hydrate the nails so it’s not susceptible to damage. Leave for few minutes then wipe off any excess before applying the polish.

Tags Nail Care