Nailed it! Manicures and nail care made easy

Clean, shiny well-kept nails are a quick-fire way to feeling pampered and ‘put together’, but if you’re one of the 80%[1] of people with PsA who suffer from nail problems then it can be tricky to know what  nail care advice to ignore and what to embrace! Whether you simply want to make sure your nails look tidy, or you want a full home mani experience, we’re here to show you how to reduce the chances of infections and keep those nails looking great, and you feeling pampered:

Nail care 101

  • Keeping nails short reduces the chances of nasty infections and avoids them being caught or torn as you go through your day, so file or cut regularly to keep them as healthy as possible[2]
  • A glass nail board (normally found at larger chemists and online) is a great investment, as some people with nail psoriasis find it a gentler and less abrasive way of looking after nails than an emery board, and it can also help ‘seal’ the ends of the nail
  • Soaking nails in warm water before filing is another way of ensuring maximum protection[3]; try putting on your most relaxing playlist, light a candle and turn it into five minutes of total chill-out time
  • It can be super tempting to clip cuticles or push them back, but try and avoid doing so if possible  as this is another way in which infections can occur [4]
  • And remember, nail care isn’t just for the ladies! Men will also benefit from this advice and feel put together if their hands are looking and feeling pampered

So we’ve covered off the basic nail care, and now we get to…

The pretty stuff

The most important step for a perfect PsA mani is to know which products will keep your nails happy; False nails and gel treatments can be irritating[5] and lead to longer term damage, but there are some awesome nail varnishes made with natural ingredients which are available online or from specialist wellness stores that you should snap up immediately.

Here’s how to get dreamy digits in five easy steps:

  1. Start with a clean base: That means gently buffed nails with all old nail varnish removed. Always go for acetone free nail varnish remover to avoid causing damage to nails or skin irritations5
  2. A classic ‘squoval’ shape (rounded edges with a flat end) is flattering for shorter nails and is really easy to maintain. For the perfect squoval simply file your nails into the classic oval shape, and then gently file down the end until flat and gently soften the hard angles on the sides of the nails
  3. Most nail infections occur at the base of the nail,5 so try to keep a small amount of space between your varnish and cuticles (the bonus is that it’ll mean your mani lasts longer)
  4. For the perfect finish, get a small amount of varnish on your brush and push it up from the centre of the nail towards the cuticle, allowing the brush to fan out and create a semi-circle. The brush can then be pulled down to the tip of the nail, creating a smooth line and even coating
  5. It can take up to 24 hours for nail varnish to dry completely, but dipping your hands in cold water for three minutes once touch dry will help speed up with process, leaving you with perfect nails which will last for days

Don’t forget to Tweet or Instagram us @PsandMe to show off your perfect 10!

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