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Category Archives: Nail Care


“Leave the Peeling to Oranges” – How to have healthy, strong nails.

By Tina Stading, Nail Specialist Reflections – A Salon

Being a certified nail tech I get to interact with all types of people from all kinds of backgrounds, and the one question I get asked frequently about is how to deal with unsightly peeling nails. Many people suffer from onychoschisis, a condition where the different layers of keratin that make up the nail plate flake off at the ends. While reasons vary for this condition, from lifestyle habits, past nail trauma to genetics, there are a few keys things you can do to treat this form of nail dystrophy.

Shaping & Buffing

NailsOnce a week you will need to shape & buff your nails. You will need a 4 way nail buffer to do this. Usually the sides of the buffers are numbered from 1 to 4, with 1 being the roughest side & 4 being the smoothest side. Use side number 1, or the roughest side of the buffer, to file the free edge of all 10 nails. When you’re shaping your nail tip be sure to file from the corners toward the center in one direction, avoiding a sawing back & forth motion. Your nail length should be right at the tip of your finger or just below it, avoid too much length but also avoid making them too short. Moving onto side 2 buff the entire nail surface on each finger in a gentle back & forth motion. If you feel any heat spikes on your nails you are buffing too hard. Do the same with side 3 & buff the entire nail. Once you get to side 4, or the smoothest side, take the time to make sure the entire nail is buffed & that you can see the layers of keratin smoothed out. Your nails will be left with a shiny natural finish.


Once you have shaped & buffed your nails you will want to moisturize. In between the layers of keratin on your nail plate are small spaces. These spaces can fill with air & water causing the nail to swell which makes the layers easier to lift & separate causing peeling. By moisturizing you are protecting your nail plate from such damage. Look for a cuticle treatment that has keratin as well as jojoba oil in it, such as CND’s Rescue RXx . The jojoba oil has the same sized molecules as the body’s own natural oil, sebum, which can easily penetrate the layers of the nail while depositing the keratin to the nail plate, restoring strength & moisture. Once you have massaged the oil treatment into each nail, finish off with an ultra-hydrating lotion or body butter to seal it in. Cuccio’s Naturale Butter Blend in Milk & Honey is a great option for this; it’s thick but does not leave an oily residue. It also has time released emollients that moisturize the nails & skin every 2 hours. Repeat this process twice daily.

Additional Tips

Here are some additional tips on keeping your peeling nails at bay:

  • Wear gloves when doing household chores or working outside. Soap, the action of scrubbing or digging, & other harsh chemicals can dry your hands out & damage your nails.
  • Apply a moisturizer after you wash your hands or use a hand sanitizer since these can also cause your nails to dry out.
  • Avoid long, hot baths or showers since hot water is especially drying to skin & nails. Be sure to moisturize as soon as possible after your shower or bathe to lock in any moisture remaining.
  • And last but certainly not least, make sure you are drinking adequate amounts of water to stay hydrated & are eating a varied diet to ensure you are getting all the vitamins & minerals you need for healthy nails.

Having healthy nails not only gives you a more put together appearance, but it also boosts your confidence. Nail care, like regularly scheduled haircuts or a good skin care regimen, should be a part of your self-care routine. Consider seeing a professional certified nail technician to keep your nails as healthy as they can be. A trained professional will not only be able to perfectly shape your nails & give you the look that you desire, but they can also keep the peeling at bay all while providing a relaxing experience in an atmosphere that promotes total wellness.