Silly me for being the little girl in 6th grade who begged her mom for acrylics because it was the cool factor to have airbrushed french manicured nails with designs. Low and behold, mama followed through with her baby girl’s wishes, and there went my healthy nail bed. I’ve been an acrylic nail wearer for about 12 years, and consequently my nails were thin as wax paper and as flimsy as a cooked spaghetti noodle. After many failed attempts at wearing my natural nails, I finally said I would follow through with my last try at having the adorable natural nails I’ve always wanted. It took me a while to transition because I was once a bartender/server so my hands were constantly dipped in harsh chemicals, which could have been damaging towards my nails but I gave it my best and it worked. With the help a close friend encouraging me to stick with natural nails –I have been acrylic free since September 2013! I still have a long way to go but I can finally function without being afraid of splitting or breaking my natural nails. Here are a few tricks I used to jump start my natural nail growth:
- Short and sweet is the way to go when growing out your damaged nail bed. I literally kept my nails trimmed right at the point of the tip of my fingers to avoid breaking them.
- Gel nails first … I wouldn’t recommend only using polish. Gel is a little thicker than plain polish, and it adds a little more strength.
- Use gloves when cleaning. Gloves should become your best friend! Anytime I cleaned my house or washed dishes, I always used gloves to avoid thinning your gel polish or damaging your nail bed.
- Vitamins! I took my daily dose of biotin to speed the process of nail growth. For some reason my nails don’t grow as fast, unless something is on them like gel, so this helped me a lot.
- Up your water intake.
- Patience … trust me this is tedious process and it takes about 6 months to notice a difference, but its so worth it.
Here are a few photos of my natural nails from October 2013 to February 2014