It might not be the first thing that comes in mind, but how our hands look and feel gets noticed far more often than we think.
Of course, there are dozens of products we can buy for smooth skin and strong nails, but regular creams or peels often come with scary chemicals that do more harm than good, and organic variants might leave a bigger dent in our wallet than we’d bargained for.
Luckily, there’s another alternative: DIY recipes and vitamin cures!
Here are 6 of my personal secrets to beautiful hands and nails that leave a great first impression:
1. Cleaning Basics
It doesn’t matter whether you’ve worked, cooked, or cleaned – your hands are paying a price for everything you do.
(Think stains, food smells, broken or dirty nails, and chapped skin.)
To thoroughly clean your hands without burdening your skin, simply fill a small bowl with about 4 cups of lukewarm water. Add one cup of organic apple cider vinegar and several table spoons of baking soda.
Bathe your hands in this concoction for a couple of minutes, while gently rubbing over your skin and nails with a little brush.
2. Vitamin C Hand Peel
To remove dead cells from your hands and plump up your skin, there’s nothing better than a vitamin C peel:
Mix about 2 Tbsp of vitamin C powder (aka ascorbic acid) and 2 Tbsp of Dead Sea salt with a little bit of almond milk into a thick paste.
With a little brush, massage this paste into your skin for several minutes, and then rinse with lukewarm water.
After thoroughly cleaning or peeling your hands, you need to apply some moisture to soothe and plump up your skin.
Although many essential oils have a moisturizing effect, they often leave an annoying residue or oily film on the skin after application. Grape seed oil on the other hand is extremely “light”, which means it is quickly absorbed by the skin while providing plenty of nutrients and stimulating tissue regeneration.
4. Vitamin Cuticle Oil And Hand Treatment
Even though your hands might now be smooth and soft, chances are your cuticles still need a little extra TLC.
One of the most effective vitamin cures I know is vitamin E. Simply cut open a capsule with plain vitamin E oil and squeeze a tiny amount onto your finger tips. Massage into your cuticles and you’ll be surprised at how quickly they transform, or that your nails will never break again due to a lack of moisture!
Every now and then I pamper myself with a complete vitamin E treatment and apply the content of several capsules all over my hands right before going to bed.
Since the oil is thick and takes times to be absorbed, make sure to wear cotton gloves during the night. Going to bed with gloves on might feel a little weird at first, but the effect is totally worth it!
Of course, beautiful hands and nails (or skin and hair) are not just about what we put onto our body. Making sure we provide our system with plenty of nutrients so that we can feel and look the best from the inside out is at least equally important.
5. Foods for strong nails
Do you have brittle nails that never seem to grow? Daily have some (or all) the following foods which are chock-full of “nail & skin” micronutrients to help your hands look the best:
- Organic almonds or plain organic almond butter
- Spinach, kale, watercress, broccoli, or collards
- Carrots, pumpkin seeds, or sweet potatoes
- Chia seeds
6. Supplements for strong nails
Biotin – a member of the vitamin B family – has been shown to increase nail thickness and prevent your nails from breaking or splitting.
It’s provided in ample amounts by the above foods, but since B vitamins are water-soluble, you need to replenish them several times daily.
If you want to supplement with a B-vitamin complex, make sure your product provides you with at least 2.5 milligrams of biotin a day.
One last thought: if you’ve tried the tips above and still aren’t all that happy with your hands and nails, think about changing your soap, shampoo, or other products you use on a daily basis.
If you’d like to know which vitamin hacks I recommend for hair growing strong, keep your eyes open for my next piece!