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Okay, so as promised, I've put together some of my top tips for longer and stronger nails!  I've also combined this post with tips for better looking hands too, considering you can't have one without the other and vice versa. Superficial? Uhuh. Nevertheless, if you're craving the juxtaposition of silky-soft hands and killer talons, read on... 
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tips for better looking hands skincarebeautiful pink roses photographyI'll admit I'm quietly finding it hilarious how I've chosen sparkly blue fairy-esque nails to accompany tips for fierce nails, but don't let the L'Oreal baby blue shade or Ciate sparkles fool you - these nails are still lethal!  Well, fairly lethal.  I've recently cut my nails down considerably as part of my routine to ensure longer nails during the summer.  Fab timing for a guide post, Gabs.  Anyway onto the tips; these are a handful of the ways I ensure good nail and hand health, some of which you may nod furiously in agreement with and others shake your screen with rage.  Either way, these are the tips I've followed for the past half decade!


5 NAIL CARE TIPS


Combine trimming and filing - Similar to our hair, nails need to be regularly managed to avoid weakening and breaking.  In between trims, I lightly file my nails every few days.  Also, to ensure less awkward tears and snags, try switching squared-nails for a 'softened' version by slightly rounding the edges (as shown in photos)

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Base and top coats - Both are essential for nail health/appearance.  A decent top coat ensures better wear and therefore less regular use of nail polish remover (which can dry out your nails).  I'm a huge fan of Jessica Nails' Top Priority Top Coat  

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Vitamins and supplements - There's plenty of information straight from experts available online, however three I've been taking for many years are Zinc, Folic Acid and Biotin (Vitamin H).  Biotin is particularly useful as it specifically promotes the growth of nails and hair - personally, I take MultiBionta by Seven Seas.  Tablet forms of Folic Acid (Vitamin B9) are available, however you'll also most likely have access to an abundance of it right now, as fish, cheese and red meat are all high in Folic Acid! 

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Avoid soaking your nails - Cover your hands as often as possible when coming into contact with water, for example when washing up.  Be sure to thoroughly dry the underneath of your nails after washing your hands/showering too - an area often forgotten and left damp!

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Give them the princess treatment - Sadly, lying on a chaise longue all day as you're fed a bunch of grapes isn't (always) possible.  So, as your nails grow to a longer length, don't be tempted to use them as substitutes for your fingers by relying on them to open packages or pick up small objects.  Though, picking up a cube of jelly a day is allowed, as it's rumoured to be an effective (and rather tasty) nail strengthener!  

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Time to move onto the hands!  Genetics play a decent role on this front, particularly with regard to finger length, however there's still a lot that can be done to improve their appearance.  Such as... not shoving your hand into a bunch of roses and scratching up your middle finger on thorns, oops!


5 HAND CARE TIPS


Cuticles - If needed, cuticles can be gently pushed back using a soft-tipped pusher.  However, avoid cutting them as this can open the door to infection/irritation

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Hand over the shovel - Simply put, do as little with your hands as possible.  Easier said than done?  Of course!  However, small lifestyle adjustments on this front can go a long way.  For example, one of my changes includes wearing palm-grip gloves when lifting (albeit very light) weights.  Speaking of weights, arm exercises that involve lifting will simultaneously help shape the muscles in your hands/fingers!

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Sun damage - Treat your hands as you do your face when exposed and use sun protection

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Lotions & potions - There are so, so many options available when in comes to skincare/hand creams, therefore you're best deciding on budget, scent and preference before you begin searching.  Personally, I'm forever variating my hand creams, though most often revisiting products by Clarins and L'Occitane   

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Identify the problems - 'An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure', after all!  Check out the ingredients of the soap you use at home/work to see whether it could be contributing to dryness.  Have you been wearing gloves throughout this past chilly season?  Is it time to exfoliate?         

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photography lover uk female bloggerI hope the above points have been of some help.  Both for those of you who are looking to frighten people with the length of their talons, and equally those endeavouring to induce swoons from the lucky individuals who touch their baby-soft hands!  Anyway, there's a ton of further information online - particularly when it comes to home remedies - but if you have any specific questions, feel free to drop me an email!

With love,

Gabrielle x