You need not spend a fortune on fancy nail oils. If you want one of the best nail conditioners, Onymyrrhe, is a product that you can rub nightly into the matrix areas (lunula and cuticle area) of nails. A bottle is expensive, about $20, but lasts for nearly two years. Even if you use Onymyrrhe, it is still important to rub oil into your nails throughout the day.

Nail Care : Some Don’t and Do’s

  • Don’t push your cuticles back with a hard tool. Doing so may damage the matrix, the part that generates new nail and makes the nail proteins.
  • Do push damp cuticles back gently with a towel over your finger.
  • Don’t use acetone-containing solvents on your nails.
  • Do use non-acetone containing solvents to remove nail products.
  • Don’t get solvents like gasoline, turpentine, etc. on your nails.
  • Do wear protective gloves when working with solvents.
  • Don’t repeatedly wash/dry your hands and nails. (Hard for physicians among us.) Do wear protective gloves when house cleaning, doing dishes, etc. Do keep you nails well oiled to minimize their drying out excessively.
  • Don’t spend a lot of time in chlorinated swimming pools. Do keep you nails well oiled if you must.
  • Don’t cut back your cuticles. You may damage the nail growth matrix. You may wish to avoid professional manicures, or ask your manicurist NOT to cut back your cuticles, but to oil them and gently push them back.
  • Don’t file nails all the way down to the nail bed at the sides. Doing so takes away the natural nail wrap that protects from horizontal splits.
  • Do invest in a really good nail file.
  • Do always have a nail file with you. Snags can happen any time.
  • Do invest in very fine abrasive paper like that sold by the Classical Guitar Store as nail paper. Wrapped over a nail file, it can polish the edges and under-edges of your nails. A four-way nail buffer works well too. Buff only the edges and under-edges of nails. Buffing the tops on nails will thin them.
  • Don’t reflexively reach out to do things with your right hand. Think! Do figure out how to do nail-risky things left-handed.
  • Do rub oils into your nails several times a day and always after washing your hands.
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