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11/10 Flimsy Nail Fixes

Posted on November 10, 2010 at 2:23 PM

Here's a question from one of my readers:

How can I make my nails stronger?

My nails are really flimsy; they've always been this way. I never bite them. I don't usually clip them, because they’re so thin I can just peel the end off. Even if I try to let them grow out, they're so thin that they always start to crack or break. I have tried nail hardeners, but they don’t make much difference. I really want longer nails, HELP!

Some people are born with hard, healthy, beautiful nails and others (like you and me) are born with weak flimsy pathetic nails. It’s sad, but true. I have always had terrible nails, but I have great hair and practically blemish-free skin (even in high school), so I just count my blessings and wear acrylic nails…which brings me to

option #1: The Artificial Route

If you really want long beautiful nails, you can have nail enhancements put on. These can get expensive and require quite a bit of upkeep, but they are pretty… Your choices are:


This is what I wear, it is a strong plastic applied either over your natural nail, or over your nail with a tip attached (for length). It a a powder mixed with a liquid solution and applied to the nail with a brush. This is what most people typically associate with the Vietnamese nail salons, you know the ones with the chairs that look like hands, and all the ladies that barely speak English wearing masks and talking about you in their native tongue. However, most Day Spas perform acrylic services as well, and have odorless acrylic.


Gel is basically the same as acrylic. They’re both plastic overlays, but the gel solution is pre-mixed, so you get a cleaner application. Gel nails also need to be cured (set) with a UV light. Gels are very pretty, but they are also temperamental. They are more difficult to wear and to apply. They have to be cured for just the right about of time, the crack easily (especially in cold weather) and Acetone Nail Polish remover cannot remove them. Gel Nails must be filed or clipped off. This does not make them a good choice if you’re just going to try them out. Gel nails are best for people who plan to wear them long term.


Nail wraps are great for strengthening natural nails. This is the application of fabric, usually silk, over your natural nail. This is a good option for someone who needs a nail repair or wants to strengthen their nails until they can get them healthy. You can apply  a wrap and allow it to grow while following the steps below. With a little filing and glue touch-ups, the wraps will grow out unnoticed. 

- Some people think that nail enhancements are dangerous, but if they are applied and cared for correctly, they are perfectly safe.

Option #2: The Natural Route

If you don’t want to wear nail enhancements, you should keep your nails polished at all times. Use a nail strengthening base coat, such as OPI nail envy or Sally Hansen Hard as Nails, 2 coats of color, and a top coat. This will add 4 extra layers or strength to your nails, and also protect them.

No Topical Nail Strengthener will permanently alter the condition of your nail. They will work to strengthen your nails while they are on, but when you take them off (or they chip off) your nail will still be flimsy and soft, which is why it is important to keep nails polished. In conjunction with polishing nails, you can take a hair skin and nail vitamin. These vitamins can be purchased at any beauty supply or Health store (Sally’s or GNC), and will help to improve your nails from the inside out.

I hope these suggestions help!

Send your beauty questions to pamperp[email protected] and I’ll answer them in my next blog.

Don’t forget to stop by tomorrow for another dose of the beauty blog.



Categories: Hand, Foot, and Nail Care

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Reply Braun rasierer
2:59 AM on December 29, 2010 
Very useful list of templates¡­thanks for the compilation!
Reply Brittany D
2:41 PM on January 13, 2013 
I have to say that I thought your recap of nail enhancements was good and fair, but the color you chose for the text is awful. It clashes badly with the mauve color of the background. I had to highlight all the text to be able to read your blog post. Perhaps change the text to black, that would make it easier to read.

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