Preparing Your Hands & Feet For Winter
Wintertime is tough on the body, it’s too wet outside, too dry inside and finding a happy medium for your hair, skin & nails isn’t an easy task. There are a few things you can do to help prepare yourself for the short days and long nights ahead.
Team Inspirationail has learned a few tips over the years and we’re sharing them here with you today. All of these are fairly quick and easy to do and don’t require large purchases. Really it’s about keeping you living and eating healthy while avoiding exposure to the elements as much as possible. With a little advance planning, preventative care and attention to detail you and your nails can make it through the winter intact.
Nails grow less in the winter and tend to become brittle – this makes them more susceptible to breaks & tears.
Keeping yourself hydrated on the inside helps every part of your body work & feel better. That said, it’s still difficult to remember sometimes – try adding a squeeze of any citrus fruit for a little extra flavour. We won’t bore you with statistics about how much you should drink – but if you aren’t visiting the bathroom every couple of hours, you should probably be drinking more water.
A good moisturiser is key to keeping winter skin & nails well hydrated as well. It’s flu season, so washing your hands is a must, just keep skin cream nearby and slather up (massaging into cuticles & nails) after every wash. (Don’t forget your toes after showers too). Be sure to apply a natural cuticle oil weekly – try olive oil in a pinch.
Investing in a good pair of gloves & wearing them every day helps to keep your hands from the elements. Cold winter winds and dry air take their toll on skin and nails so keeping them covered will help to keep the moisture in. Get some in a bold colour to make up for covering your brilliant nails!
Any time your hands are submerged in water or exposed to chemicals you should wear rubber gloves. Exposure to water for long periods of time causes nails to expand with water and shrink as they dry. This makes them vulnerable and can cause them to be brittle as a result. The chemicals should go without saying and direct contact should be avoided whatever the weather outside.
We see our hands every day, but during winter our toes often stay covered up for days on end. It’s easy to get lazy, but it’s not very good for our feet. Be sure to change socks daily (at least every other day) and give your feet a few minutes to breathe every day. Also keep your toenails regularly trimmed & filed to avoid breakage & ingrown nails.
Eating well is the backbone to our overall health which means it’s essential for healthy skin & nails. Getting plenty of protein & vitamins is especially important during largely sunless winter months. Eat as locally as possible focusing on organic seasonal produce and lean proteins – fish is great for your skin & nails (just make sure it’s not farmed).
This is something Team Inspirationail recommends year round. Opt for oily scrubs with salt or sugar crystals because they slowly dissolve and won’t clog drains. (try olive oil and rough cut salt or sugar in a pinch) Massage thoroughly into hands, cuticles & nails (& don’t forget your feet). Rinse quickly in warm (not hot) water, gently pat dry and follow with a thick moisturising cream.
Although dark winter months are a great time to work on your manicure & pedicure skills it’s also the worst time of the year for your nails. That makes your practice a double edged sword – nail products inevitably dry nails out and keeping them constantly polished deprives them of what little sunlight they get. Practice restraint and paint in moderation using the most natural products you can find – giving your nails periodic breaks is important in the winter.
Our advice is to go as natural and free of chemicals as possible, whether it’s your nail, cleaning or beauty products. Be sure to check out our store for some great nail products by companies who care about you & the environment.