Ridges. What you need to know.

Horizontal or Vertical ones?

Your nails are a reflection of the health and wellness of your body. You can tell you a lot from looking at fingernails. It is true that abnormalities of the nails can often provide early clues to common medical problems or severe systemic diseases. Take a few moments and examine your unpolished fingernails under a good light. You will gather a new appreciation for how your lifestyle affects your nails and overall health.

One of the most common fingernail complaints is ridges. There are so many speculations on why people get them, from aging to nutritional deficiencies. But what is the real answer? Are they something to worry about? Can you stop them from growing? How they can be hidden? Who can get ridges on their nails? Everybody, in fact, fingernail ridges are very common. They appear more often as you age, but they can appear on people of all ages. They aren’t only confined to your fingernails, as ridges in toenails can be visible, as well.

Nail Ridges

Horizontal ridges:

  • injury
  • infection
  • nutrition

Longitudinal ridges:

  • aging
  • poor absorption of vitamins and minerals
  • thyroid disease
  • kidney failure
  • rheumatoid arthritis

 

Vertical or Longitudinal Nail Ridges

Vertical nail ridges are the most common type of nail ridges.  They are like a fingerprint for your nail, one that amplifies with age. As we age the nail matrix becomes atrophied in areas resulting in longitudinal ridging of nails: They are like wrinkles in the nails.

Causes
As we get older, they can become more pronounced due to everyday abuse; repeated blows, beating and battering of the fingertips and fingernails.  Vertical ridges also become more pronounced when the finger is injured from catching them in drawers and doors.

But these are not the only cause of increased ridges.  Vertical nail ridges also become more pronounced as we age, due to lack of moisture in the nail.  As we age, our skin slows in the production of sebum, which hydrates our nails naturally.  Depending on the individual, this natural process will dry out the nail.  The nails become seemingly harder and the ridges become more pronounced, but they can also become more brittle and prone to breaking. (Applying cuticle oil daily can help with this.)

Sometimes it can be a sign of lack of certain vitamins or poor nutrition, but this is rare. Vertical ridges can also be caused by nail injury and certain diseases, thyroid disease, kidney failure, including rheumatoid arthritis. If there is only a single vertical streak, this could be a sign of a tumour growing at the root of the nail. Another caveat: If the ridges have appeared and grown more pronounced very quickly or over a short period of time, they could be a sign of a very rare condition called lichen planus, which often also causes skin rash.

Horizontal Nail Ridges

Horizontal nail ridges are less common and can be due to a multitude of reasons.

Causes
Most often, they are due to infection and injury.  It is important to see a doctor when such an injury or infection occurs, especially in the area of the nail matrix, the area around the moon of your nail and below the cuticle.
This type of injury or infection can cause permanent horizontal nail ridges and waves, although this usually only happens on one or more fingers.  When the ridges are on all the nails, you’ll want to consult a doctor.
These systemic type ridges to watch for are:
1. Nail Pitting, most commonly from Psoriasis
2. Beau’s Lines, are characterized by indentations across the nail bed that are a sign of disrupted growth due to illness .It can be a sign of a zinc deficiency or something more serious, like uncontrolled diabetes and peripheral vascular disease, as well as illnesses associated with a high fever, such as scarlet fever, measles, mumps and pneumonia. 3

While a single instance of a horizontal ridge could just be a sign of a time the body was fighting off illness, recurrent horizontal ridges might point to a chronic disease.

How to treat ridges?

Vertical Ridges: While some people might not like the way they look, it is better not to buff off the ridges. Since the ridge is the thinnest spot on the nail, it can split and buffing only exacerbates that. Instead, try to moisturize the nail throughout the day with nail oil, vitamin E oil or olive oil might help prevent ridges in your nails, paying close attention to the cuticle, the key to the health of the nail.

Horizontal Ridges: If your fingernails change colour or you develop horizontal nail ridges, consult your doctor. These changes could indicate an underlying health condition.

How to hide ridges?

There is special nail polish made for hiding ridges. They are typically white and have the word “ridge” on the bottle. They are used like a base coat and do a great job at producing a smooth nail that looks ridge-free. Many nail salons use ridge filler under your polish to make your nails look completely smooth.

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Sources used:

www.bella10.blogspot.cz
www.naildoctors.com
www.huffingtonpost.com
www.mayoclinic.com

 

HANGNAIL. Warning: don´t bite or tear it off!

Hangnail is another very common and sometimes painful issue that nearly everyone experiences during lifetime. Hangnails are those dry, sometimes brittle triangular-shaped tags of skin around your fingernails, usually at the cuticle, that can tear off and be annoying as much as an unattractive and painful as well. Tearing it off can become a disturbing habit.

This usually happens because the skin is dry or because a person bites his nails. Hangnail has nothing to do with ingrown nail; hangnail is not a problem of the nail itself.

Hangnail

Hangnail

When the skin around your fingernails tears off, it opens the door to infection, especially when you consider all the bacteria your hands are exposed to every day, not to mention dishwater, cold weather and all the other things that dry out your hands in the first place. Fortunately, there are quick and easy ways to prevent hangnails that range from moisturizing often to pampering your hands with cuticle soaks and manicures.

Remember that hangnails that aren’t properly cared for can result in an infection called paronychia. There are three types of paronychia infection: bacterial, Candida and fungal infection in the skin around your fingernail can be red, swollen and painful, and it may even emit pus.

Common causes of hangnails

  • Dry skin
  • Cold, dry winter climate
  • Overexposure to harsh chemicals
  • Frequently immersing your unprotected hands in water
  • Nail biter
  • Bad Manicure with frequent cutting of the cuticles

 

HOW TO AVOID HANGNAILS?

  • Moisturize Your Hands – Keeping your hands moisturized  with oils, lotions and creams at all times ensures it does not become dry. As you know, dryness is a primary cause of hangnails. Therefore, keeping hands moisturized with a good hand cream, especially during dry weather is beneficial.
Moisturise your hands

Moisturize your hands

  • Wash your hands daily with a mild soap.
  • Avoid Biting Nails – If you are a nail biter, you should try and avoid this habit as you are more at risk of developing hangnails than others. In addition, the risk of infection is also higher. If you have already developed hangnails with an infection, there are various antifungal and antibiotic medications just for this purpose.
  • Trim Nails Regularly – Keeping the nails trimmed and not overly long can help prevent hangnail development. Regular manicures can also be good for your nail health, just remember that pushing cuticles back with an orangewood stick is healthier than cutting them.
Trim Nails Regularly

Trim Nails Regularly

  • Use Acetone Free Nail Polish Remover / polish with non-irritating ingredients . Acetone-based nail polish remover dries out hands and nails. Also, use polishes that do not contain drying ingredients such as formaldehyde, dibutyl phthalate and toluene.
Limpiador

Acetone Free Nail Polish Remover

  • Use Petroleum Jelly – This is an excellent moisturizer. Petroleum jelly contains fats that penetrate into the deep layers of the skin. The application of petroleum jelly is one of the best ways you can prevent the hands from drying excessively.
  • Consider your diet – If you have brittle or problem nails, it could be the result of a vitamin deficiency that can make you more prone to dryness that causes hangnails. A diet rich in calcium, iron, and vitamin B to promote nail strength. Moreover, drink plenty of water throughout the day to keep your body and skin hydrated.

 

HANGNAIL REMOVAL

Treating hangnails should not involve ripping, biting or cutting the affected area.
Steps to follow:

  1. Disinfect a pair of cuticle scissors in alcohol to reduce the chance of accidental infection.
  2. Soften the area by soaking fingers in warm water.
  3. Clip the hangnail with the cuticle scissors to prevent jagged edges.
  4. Once this is done, massage lotion to the nail bed and continue to do so for some weeks. You can also consider the application of antibacterial lotion and covering the affected area with a bandage. If the infection has set in, try soaking the fingers in hot water for a few days. If this does not work, consult your doctor.

 

Hangnails do not have to ruin your fingers and cause problems. If you care for your nails properly and avoid the causes of hangnail development, you ensure healthy nails.

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Sources used:

http://health.howstuffworks.com
http://www.nlm.nih.gov
http://feminspire.com
http://www.expertclinic.org
http://nationalnailfungus.org
http://www.examiner.com

All you wanted to know about Nail Biting and how to treat it

Nail Biting: Implications

Did you know that your nails can reveal clues to your overall health and personality? And how bitten nails or chipped nail polish can put interviewers off a candidate? You have often heard that first impressions count, particularly when this is related to a job interview.

Judy James, author of The Body Language Bible, states that you have 7 seconds to impress someone when you meet for the first time.

Therefore, we should take care of our general appearance and this, obviously, includes our nails.

Nail Biting

Nail Biting

Studies show that: 28-33% of children, 44% of adolescents, 19-29% of young adults and 5% of adults are nail biters.

It seems that Biting fingernails is a tic or a common oral compulsive habit in children and adults that, often starts in childhood, and it happen during periods of nervousness, stress, hunger or boredom. Nail biting gives the individual a feeling of peace and reduces nervous tension in stressful situations. Actually, a friend of mine stated that her current biting habit came from the time when she was a child and her father died, this tragic event during childhood triggered the tic. But this type of problem can range from a mild, occasional habit to an ongoing and more serious problem and be a sign of emotional disorder called chronic onychophagia, this is when someone becomes a “pathological groomer”.

Some Facts you should know:

Factors to spark Nail Biting

  • Genetics – An ancient grooming behavior in the brain, left behind by evolution
  • Childhood Stresses – caused by stressful or traumatic events: shyness, pressure to achieve good grades, bullying in the school, divorce of the parents, moving to a new house,
  • Imitation – nail biting may be a learned behavior from the family
  • Lack of proper tools – Another theory is that the nail biter simply doesn’t have the right tools to trim the nails or handle irregularities as they arise

Negative consequences

  • Anxiety in the individual because of the impossibility of showing the hands
  • Negative impact on your appearance: social implications
  • Health problems: microbial and viral infections, dental problems, transport of germs into the mouth

Treatment

For mild biters:

  • Bitter Polish: apply a bitter-tasting preparation to the nails
Anti nail biting

Anti nail biting

  • Keep nails trimmed short.
Manicure set with a glass nail file

Manicure set with a glass nail file

  • Get regular manicures
  • Use an alternate technique to manage your stress (yoga, meditation,…).
  • Put a rubber band around your wrist and snap it whenever you get the urge to bite your nails.
  • Wear gloves or put self-adhesive bandages on the tips of your fingers

For chronic biters:

Onychophagia is a disease that takes a physical form from a psychological cause. Their personal history, their character and therefore, any treatment has to be adapted on a case by case basis:

  • Medication: A tool to help with therapy
  • Behavioural Therapy: Habit Reversal Training (HRT)5
  • Other treatments: Aversion Therapy, Self- Control, Hypnotherapy or Psychological treatment (to eliminate the underlying problem)
Nail biting

Nail biting

Many adults and children are often unaware they are biting their nails because doing so has become a habit and this can affect the individual’s quality of life and ultimately his self-image. Personal grooming is just as important as what you wear. You may select the right clothes, but neglecting personal hygiene can ruin the image you wish to present. Get your fingernails always neat, clean and trimmed, experts claim.

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Sources used:

www.judijames.com
www.psychology.wikia.com
www.skinnail.com
www.psychcentral.com
www.ehow.com
www.nailmove.com
www.design-glassware.com
www.mavala.com
www.stopnailbitingtips.com
www.sevenoaksdental.com
www.zoominterviews.com

Nail Fungus

One of unpleasant things which could happen to your nails called fungus. Yes, it is more of a private issue but as they say “in for a penny, in for a pound” and since we decide to talk about all possible aspects of nail care, we have to mention fungal diseases too.

As you understand the following images could be disturbing.

nail_fungus

Causes of nail fungus

Causes of nail fungus (Tinea unguim) are mycotic infections, which easily transfer from one individual to another. Most of the time people in one family exposed to infection, through shared footwear, towels or some other home stuff. The same infection rate appears in public places like saunas, gyms, swimming pools.

Nail fungus is very “tough” infection, and eventually contaminates all nail parts destroying it and infecting other nails or even skin. Nail fungus is a source of invasion of other body parts. Even you if treat all nidus of fungus on feet skin, it might occur again if nidus of infection left in the nails.
As the nail fungus spreads deep into your nail, it causes nails discolor, thicken and as following crumbling and destroyed nails. Fungus makes nails white, grey, yellow, brown, sometimes black and even green. Nail plate itself becomes opaque, because of fungus under it. Sometime disease could also pair with unpleasant odor, which is also could be sign of coming problems.

Possible consequences

There are a lot of unwanted consequences of untreated nail fungus, thus you have to careful at first. Always try to wear your own slipper in public shower, swimming pool at the places where you are mostly exposing to the contamination. If some of your relatives, friends, roommates with whom you use same home stuff are infected use precaution methods too.

But if, you unfortunately got infected, don’t waste your time trying folk remedies such as Listerine and vinegar mixture, go you your dermatologist. Only lab tests and prescription drugs will help you.

Identifying various types of nail fungus

Here is the table that will help you to identify fungal type, but as mentioned before get the professional help and use this table (courtesy of fixafungus.com) for your guidance only.

Identifying-Types-of-Nail-Fungus

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Image credit, and sources used:

www.fixafungus.com
www.sovetcik.ru

Nail Jewelry

Lady Gaga Nails

Gone are the days where just a bit of nail polish would do the trick: nail decoration does not end with the nail polish, it goes far beyond, Nail Art Jewellery is taking positions and the magazine girls, we know who THEY ARE, THEY LOVE IT! Let´s face it…NAIL JEWELLERY ROCKS! The amazing thing about this, it is that you can do it at home and you do not have to be extremely skilled for it.

SWAROVSKI NAIL ART JEWELLERY. GO SPARKLING!

Why Swarovski? Because they are simply the best crystals in the world. The quality and the beauty of Swarovski crystals cannot be beaten. Amazing designs can be done with Swarovski crystals and gems also, giving this sparkling touch to your nails and with a little effort.

Swarovski nail art

You will need:

  • Genuine Swarovski crystals
  • Nail Art Tweezers
  • 1 Clear Gel Bond / Nail Glue

The steps:

  1. Apply your nail polish smoothly. Prevent ridges or bumps by shaking the polish bottle before use. This is an important step.
  2. Let your fresh polished nails dry completely. You cannot put the jewels on with wet nails.
  3. Gently pick up the jewel with tweezers. Fix every crystal or gem individually to the nail plate using a gel bond.
  4. Push the jewel with the tip of something sharp. Make sure it sticks.
  5. Apply a top coat. You will find this helps them not fall off.

3D NAIL ART JEWELLERY CHARM. FLAT IS ENOUGH!

Nail Art Jewellery Charms

Offering effortless and unique style for your nails. Now we want big, bold and bright nails and 3D nail art is perfect for this: a real style punch for your manicure fashion. Sophisticated 3D Jewellery Charms will ensure that you never have a dull look to your nails ever again, thanks to some of the trendiest and most fashionable designs on the market.
The charms can be applied to the coloured nail polish base coat of your choice to give an extra level of unique style to your fingertips. So simple to apply with nail glue and even easier to enjoy, you’ll get a dazzling look.

NAIL ART DANGLES AND CHARMS HEY! THE 80’S HAVE COME BACK!

Nail Piercing Jewelry

The ’80s saw the use of nail drills becoming common when working with acrylic nails (adapted from dental, hobby and jewellery drills, remember Madonna and her golden tooth?). Fibreglass was the newest wrap system and nail charms and gold nails began to decorate some clients’ hands, and nail art finally made it to the United States, and now… now is back!

Nail Dangles are commonly known as nail piercings, but they can also be “clip on”, so no piercing will be involved. Nail art dangles are a really quick and easy way to create interest on natural nails – they range from really elaborate designs to simpler dangles. They can be easily applied and can even be used on shorter nails.

You will need:

Nail Art Charms Tools

  • A. Nail Art Tweezers
  • B. Nail Piercer
  • C. Rhinestone Picker Pencil
  • D. Post Cutter
  • E. Nuts for a charm
  • Dangle or a Charm
  • At least one nail with at least 5mm of free edge (that’s the white tip of your nail).

Nail dangle jewelry

The steps:

  1. Before you start: Prepare nails first. Apply a base coat, nail varnish and top coat and any nail art you intent to use. There are two reasons for this: firstly, it’s a little tricky to varnish around a dangle and secondly, it will strengthen the nail that is going to carry the piercing.
  2. Get your nail piercer ready:  To use the tool, unscrew the two parts of the handle to release the drill. Screw the top of the handle onto the screw thread to leave the drill exposed.
  3. Get steady: Place the free edge of the nail onto a flat surface – the drill may pierce this surface. A cork-backed drinks coaster makes the ideal surface. You need to have at least 5mm of free edge available. The nail needs to be pierced at approximately 2 to 3mm from the free edge and  you need to be able to do this comfortably without hurting the finger.
  4. Drill: drill slowly through the selected point of the free edge turning the drill clockwise until it pierces the nail.  Remove the drill from the hole by turning anticlockwise.
  5. Insert the dangle: this is where a small pair of pliers will come in handy! Open the jump ring (this is a small metal loop that can be opened and shut – there should be one at the base of your dangle and a couple of spares in the packet). Thread the jump ring through the hole that you’ve made and thread the dangle onto the ring. Use your pliers to close the ring firmly. And….That’s it!

FINGER NAIL JEWELLERY

Fingernail jewelry nail ring

Recently the nail art trend has gone one step further as celebrities have been spotted wearing “nail jewellery”. Beyoncé, Lady Gaga and Kim Kardashian have all been seen showing off their sparkly fingertips with extreme nail guards which add a whole new dimension to the nails.

Go beyond traditional nail art and slide on these rings made especially for the tip of your finger. There are some dramatic designs, such as the rhinestone embellished claw-shaped nail rings but there are some more subtle options for the more reserved. But there are really gorgeous ones online that would definitely add an ornamental edge to your manicure.

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Image credit, and sources used:

www.crystalandglassbeads.com
nailjewellery.net
www.happynailsuk.com
www.nailtopia.co.uk
www.wikihow.com
blog.glossybox.co.uk
2.bp.blogspot.com
www.roobeauty.com

How to take care of your nails during autumn

Usually fall is sort of hard time for nails. After hot summer, nails tend to brittle and break. Why is it happening?

Well, vitamins rich summer is far behind us, our bodies had time to collect and preserve enough of healthy minerals and vitamins. Though,  seems it takes its time to spend those, there is a good reason for it, and autumn is time for preparation.  During three short months our body is changing its working regime to tight winter one.
Sunny summer gave us enough of vitamin D, but hot temperatures dried out our nails, thus they became fragile.

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My favorite hand care treatments for reasonable price

I’ve been telling myself that I should do my manicure more often, that I should treat my hands better. As they say, that eyes are mirror of the soul, so hands are age reflectors. You may have a facial, neck, eye lift, but unfortunately nothing to lift on your hands. I think on every woman’s toiletry there are some favorite creams, balms and scrubs.

Well, here is mine Rituals Ginkgo’s Secret hand balm and Rituals Hand Therapy scrub:

I think I bought this set by chance, I use their candles at home. Assistant offered me to try it first and I liked the smell and effect.  As it says in annotation ginkgo can strengthened blood vessels, and is especially good for dry skin and since then, can’t find anything better for my hands and by the way for nails too, though I have a small tube of Kamill classic hand and nail crème, in my bag:

Let’s hope that my hands will look at least how they look now in ten years.