Nail Care 101: Guidelines for Healthy Fingernails and Toenails


Nail Care in PortlandYour nails is a reflection of your overall health, which means that proper nail care, much like skin care and hair care, is essential. Whether you’re a regular folk or someone looking to build a cosmetology career, a nail care expert in Portland recommends the following nail care guidelines:

  • Always keep your nails dry and clean. Trim them regularly, straight across, using sharp nail clippers or scissors. Consider rounding the edges for maximum strength and shaping with an emery board to avoid snagging your snails on your skin or clothes.
  • Never bite your fingernails and/or remove cuticles. These could easily damage your nail beds. Likewise, take note that even a tiny cut on your nail bed could allow fungi or bacteria easy access, which in turn could result in a nasty infection.
  • Cut your toenails on a regular basis to reduce the risk of injury or trauma. If your toenails are difficult to trim, soak them first in a saltwater mixture for about 10 to 15 minutes before cutting. Combine a teaspoon of salt for every pint of water.
  • As much as possible, avoid using your fingernails as tools, like for opening a pop can.
  • Never pull hangnails to avoid ripping off live tissue and injury.
  • Never dig out an ingrown toenail, most especially if it’s sore or infected. Schedule an appointment with your doctor.
  • Only use an acetone-based nail polish remover if your nails are painted with professional shellac polish. Otherwise, stick to acetone-free removers.
  • Only wear shoes that fit your feet properly. Likewise, consider alternating which shoes you wear daily.
  • Always wear swim shoes or flip-flops in communal showers to reduce the risk of developing infections that you could obtain from dirty shower floors to your foot, and onto your toenails.

In the event that you notice your nails swell or feel sore or painful, consult your doctor right away to have your nails checked out. This is especially important for people with poor blood circulation or diabetes as the consequences could be extremely dire otherwise.

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