Q. What is the best nail hardener that encourages growth on the market – my nails spilt and break very easily.

– Jeanette

A. Ah – poor you! Cracked, broken or splitting nails look terrible, not to mention they can be extremely painful. Sometimes no matter what you try, it can seem impossible to fix. Our fingernails, and hands in general, are subjected to a lot of wear and tear, so it’s important to tackle the problem head on with a combination of healthy diet and a hard working nail care regime.

Generally, weak nails can be due to a deficiency or lacking internally. A wholesome diet rich in lean protein, fruit and vegetables and healthy fats (salmon, avocado, nuts) is obviously important. If you would like to supplement further, try a tablet such as Swisse Ultiboost Hair Skin Nails. These contain an added dose of vitamins and minerals that help to build, repair and protect damaged nails- not to mention boost your hair and skin while they’re at it.

A good nail treatment product is the next step you need to take in order to seal splitting and stop breakage, while helping nails to grow. With such a huge array of products promising to cure it all, it can be a little overwhelming to make a choice. Where does one start? Natalie Papadopoulos, owner of The Parlour Room in Clovelly, plays manicurist to the perfect talons of Sydney’s celebrity and blogger clientele. This woman knows a thing or two about nail care. “Orly Nailtrition is my favourite strengthener on the market. It has a nice pink undertone that makes your nails look nice too.” This is a great multi-tasker that hardens nails, stops breakage and improves on appearance all in one quick coat. Another top pick that is on high rotation in the Beauticate office is Revitanail Nail Strengthener. This product will fix up dehydrated nails, stop splitting, breakage, and help with growing nails that are strong and healthy.

Looking after nails and keeping their condition in check is so important, especially if you’re trying to grow your claws. Natalie recommends always keeping a nail file in your handbag in case you break a nail – then filing it so it won’t catch. Also – we’re sure we don’t have to tell you this, but biting, chewing and tearing your nails is a major no-no. Never snip or pull at your cuticles either. Instead, use a good cuticle oil and push them back gently, or trim them with cuticles snippers, if things are desperate.  Natalie swears by using her cuticle oil every second night – we love CND Solar Oil. Also keep a hand and nail cream in your bag for quick moisture during the day. L’Occitane Shea Butter Hand Cream is quickly absorbed, hydrating and won’t leave any stickiness on your hands.

Lastly, if you’re suffering damaged nails, don’t give in to masking them with acrylic sets as they can weaken the nail further, especially once you’ve had them removed. If you need a little colour, stick to normal polish. Natalie uses Coat Polish at The Parlour Room, which is kind on the nail if you simply can’t go without a manicure. Our last words will be to please don’t pick nail polish off! Use a gentle nail polish remover.

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Answered by Emily Algar

Comment (3)

  1. December 16, 2015

    I am on my 3rd bottle of revitanail, I love it! I also find putting on hand cream as much as you can remember helps a lot too.

  2. December 17, 2015
    Trish Ousby

    I experience dreadful ridges in my nails Id love to know how to prevent them Trish O

  3. January 18, 2016

    My nails peel all the time but I found that the hair, nail and skin supplement by black mores really helps