Wednesday, 13 May 2020

My Current Nail Care Routine & Why I Usually Keep Them Bare


My Current Nail Care Routine, healthy nail routine, how to have healthy nails

Here are some lesser known facts :

  • I am not a big on painting my nails. Don't get me wrong. I do enjoy wearing nail polish, but I do it mostly on a day I know I am going out someplace nice or if it's an occasion. And I do enjoy painting my own nails - the process of applying polish is somewhat relaxing for me. But I don't see the need of having a nail paint on every single day. 
  • I like keeping my nails short. I have a strong dislike towards really long nails - you know those which look like claws/weapons? I can't stand them. So short nails for me. I do like a bit of length every now and then, but I limit it to approximately 2 mm. 
  • I’ve never been one for getting my nails painted professionally or get gel/acrylic nails. I understand why many people do, the end result is definitely nicer, but I rather make use of my stable hand & do them myself at home. It's more convenient for me. And I rather not have my natural nails disrupted.

I did try gel extentions early last year - BIG MISTAKE! It damaged my natural nails quite a bit. And that's with just one round. I shudder to think what would happen if I did it every few months like so many people do. 

My Current Nail Care Routine, healthy nail routine, how to have healthy nails

Why do I like to keep my nails bare most of the time ?
  • It's low maintenance - Instead of needing 15 mintues to prep my nails, apply polish, waiting for it to dry (which requires a lot of patience!) & then spending the next few minutes doing any work with ninja skills so that the polish doesn't have scratches or smudges, I just need to keep them clipped and filed well. So, it's 5 minutes every week. 
  • No need to worry about polish and outfits co-ordinating - This might seem a bit frivolous, but a lot of times outfits & the colour of your polish clash. It doesn't really look nice to be wearing a dainty outfit and have black nailpolish on ... are you getting what I am trying to say? With bare nails I really don't have to worry about any of this. 
  • Yellow Nails - I know that the nail itself is dead & the nail plate does not ‘breathe’ so it is possible to cover our nails with nail polish and not harm them. But if you wear darker colours or pigmented polishes, chances are that the pigments will stain your nails. I also know that you need to use a good base coat below the polish to prevent it. But that is an extra step = more time and honestly, I haven't found a base coat yet that prevents staining completely. 
  • Weakened Nails - Polishes can contain harsh ingredients. Toluene, formaldehyde &  DBP weaken the nails, dry them out - making them prone to breakage. You really need to pay attention to the nail polish ingredients. Regular use of nail polish can also cause keratin granulation (white spots) - please read up about this. Nail polish removers especially the ones with acetone weaken nails a lot, and you automatically use a lot less remover when you keep your nails bare most of the time. 

My Current Nail Care Routine, healthy nail routine, how to have healthy nails

Keeping your nails bare doesn't mean that they will look undone or shabby. You just need to take a bit of care so that they are presentable. Here's my current routine :

1) Prep

Wash your hands well. I like to scrub my hands (you can use any body scrub or a hand scrub if you are feeling facy) and I also clean under the nails (if they are a wee bit longer & I don't want to cut them) with a nail brush or an old toothbrush. 
All clean & scrubbed, it's time to tackle the cuticles. Bulk of my nailcare routine is tackling my thick dry cuticles. I have been using the Sally Hansen Instant Cuticle Remover for years (reviewed HERE). It does the job quickly and makes it really easy. Cutting cuticles completely makes one prone to lots of infections. I remove the excess dead skin which and clean the cuticle area with a Soft Silicone Tip Pusher. (I am using one by Vega currently). 

My Current Nail Care Routine, healthy nail routine, how to have healthy nails

When I need to trim the nails I use a good quality clipper & file the edges. I prefer using a Glass nail file. Unlike gritty metal or sandpaper files which are very harsh and can cause more damage, a glass/crystal file is gentle on the nails. I would recommend you to invest in one. It is also recommended to file I. One direction. Don't go back & forth as it tends to weaken the nails more causing them to break. 

My Current Nail Care Routine, healthy nail routine, how to have healthy nails

I do not do it often, but once in a while, if my nails have stained, or are too bumpy, I use a nail buffer to smoothen it out. I only use the finest/smoothest side. It just makes bare nails look polished. I like the Body Shop Nail Buffing Block
I will not recommend buffing the nails too often

2) Nourish

Probably the most important step & one we most often tend to neglect. Keeping the cuticle and nail bed nourished goes a long way to keep nails healthy. I find that the best way to do this is by using 2 things - A good hand cream & a cuticle oil. One of my favourites is the Burt's Bees Lemon Butter Cuticle Cream (reviewed HERE), but since it is difficult to find it in India, I have moved on to my own homemade cuticle oil, which works equally well & sometimes even better I think. 
Over the past few years I have tried many hand creams and nothing comes close to the Neutrogena Hand Cream (reviewed HERE).
The best way to do this religiously is to keep a hand cream & a cuticle oil on the bedside table. It has now become a part of my pre-sleep night-time beauty routine. 

My Current Nail Care Routine, healthy nail routine, how to have healthy nails

Additionally,I am also currently using the Sally Hansen Moisture Rehab. It is a light gel-serum which sinks in quickly leaving no residue behind. I find it extremely handy to have around for a quick boost of hydration, especially when you don't want an oily feeling during the day. It isn't essential, but my cuticles are extremely thick & dry and any help is welcome. 

My Current Nail Care Routine, healthy nail routine, how to have healthy nails

I don't get the pressure of always having lacqured nails. it's ok if you won't agree with me. If you like having a coat of polish on, do it. Whatever makes you happy. For me having nail paint on is not that important. I love rocking bare nails as long as they are well maintained and clean. 

You can watch the whole routine & the products in action, in the video I shared HERE

My Current Nail Care Routine, healthy nail routine, how to have healthy nails

Do you think you could rock bare nails too?

xoxo,
Swati