Tuesday, April 17, 2012

A Fabulous Guest: A post by Lara from Every Beauty Addict's Bible!

Hi Guys!!

Today we have another special post for you!! Our dear friend Lara from Every Beauty Addict's Bible.

Taking Care of your Cuticles

Hello loves! I am Lara from Every Beauty Addict’s Bible and today, I have been given the privilege to write this guest post for my friends Martina & Denise.

I have decided to tackle the subject of cuticle care because in my freelance job as a nail technician I get to meet different women from different backgrounds but most of them have one thing in common... they do not know what a cuticle is and how to take proper care of them.  Even more so, ones who are past a certain age will tell you that they used to cut their cuticles off and there are some manicurists who still cut off clients’ cuticles to this very date!

So let me start by explaining the anatomy of the nail and the role of cuticles first and then I will give you some tips on how you can care for your cuticles at home without spending a fortune!

A nail is mostly made-up of a protein known as keratin, so the nail is essentially dead (in fact, dead skin cells are termed to be ‘keratinized’ cells).  The only living part of a nail is the matrix, from which the nail gets the necessary nutrients to grow strong.

The nail matrix is protected by the cuticle is that thin strip around the base of the nail that protects the new cells underneath from infection or damage. Therefore, the cuticle grows from the finger to overlap and protect the nail plate and form a rim around the base of the nail.

The cuticle is perhaps the most important part of the nail, protecting both the nail matrix and with its delicate tissues and cells below the nail plate which are actively forming the hard nail. Its purpose is to protect against debris, fungi and bacteria that can damage the matrix and the nail bed.

Gentleness is key when caring for your cuticles, since vigorous trimming and pushing them back as well as the use of harsh chemical solvents may cause ridges in the nail. Therefore, wearing rubber gloves while doing house chores helps protect both your hands and cuticles.

A key point to note is that once the cuticle is damaged, the watertight space under the nail fold is laid open to moisture and becomes a potential breeding ground for bacteria, which can lead to a number of unwanted infections.

Cuticle care is therefore the cornerstone of a good manicure and impeccable looking hands; hence, cutting them off is not a solution as this will only create an open way for bacteria to enter your body and it could have serious repercussions.

Taking proper care of your cuticles shouldn’t take you more than 5 minutes a day and besides making sure that your cuticles are in tip top condition, this will also help strengthen your nails! Here are a few tips on how to take care of your cuticles:

-  Gently push back your cuticles with an orange stick right after a bath or shower or after soaking your nails in water for some time. You will achieve a neater result and they will be softer to work on.

- Never cut your cuticles. Besides leaving you prone to infections, this will make cuticles become tougher and thicker than before.  If you think you need to have your cuticles trimmed, always consult a professional manicurist or nail technician.

- Use a cuticle moisturizing oil on a daily basis. This helps strengthen the nails as well as soften and condition dry cuticles. If you don't have cuticle oil, you can use baby oil or olive oil.  You can also fit in a weekly cuticle scrub.

- Apply a highly moisturizing hand cream frequently, preferably after each time you wash your hands. Use one with a pump dispenser, that way you'll be more inclined to use it. Also, try slathering on a thick layer of hand cream (or body cream on your feet) before you go to bed and wear an old pair of gloves (or socks!) and sleep in them... by morning your hands and feet will be baby soft!

I hope you found this post useful and don’t hesitate to ask me your questions on my facebook pages!

Special thanks go to Martina & Denise for giving me the opportunity to write a guest-blog post for them!

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