How-to: care for your cuticles

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Cuticles – you’ve heard of them, you have them, but chances are you rarely think of them. Cuticles (where the nail meets the skin) are integral to keeping your nails healthy – they provide a protective cover for the tissue that grows new cells that build the nails.  Taking proper care of your cuticles will not only result in stronger, healthier nails but can also prevent infections, which usually begin at the cuticle. There are ways to treat your cuticles without taking a trip to the salon. Take a look at our list below for ways to make them softer and more nourished.

To cut or not to cut?

If you’ve ever been to a nail salon, it’s more than likely you have winced at a bleeding cuticle. If you’re worried about this, play it safe and avoid cutting or having your cuticles cut.  If you have a hangnail, avoid the temptation of pulling or biting it off and instead very carefully trim it.  There’s no real need to cut them and by staying away from the scissors you avoid breaking the cuticle seal and contracting an infection – as well as needing to get them trimmed again.

How to push them back

After filing your nails, place your fingers in a small bowl filled with soapy water, this will soften the cuticle and loosen any dirt under your nails. Pat your hands dry and carefully push cuticles back with an orange stick without adding too much pressure.  To smooth down overgrown cuticles you can use a nail buffer or clean nail file to gently buff around the nail bed. Product pick: Manicare Cuticle Sticks

Massage and Moisturise

Cuticles are essentially composed of skin – they crack, peel and flake just like the rest of your skin so it’s important to keep them moisturised. For dry cuticles try a cuticle cream such as Burt’s Bee’s Lemon Butter Cuticle Cream, which not only leaves your cuticles soft and healthy but also provides intensive care for brittle nails and chapped, cracked fingertips. If your cuticles are detached, cracked or damaged, opt for a cuticle oil such as Sally Hansen Vitamin E Nail and Cuticle Oil.

Do you care for your cuticles? Have you cut your cuticles in the past?

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