Having dry, brittle nails can be very frustrating. Although you can try a short term fix such as keeping your fingernails shorter or, if you are a woman, putting a thick coat of your favorite polish on them, it is more helpful to find a real solution.
Some medical conditions can be responsible for dry brittle nails such as thyroid problems. However, in other cases there may be no known cause for your dry fingernails. You will want to try some home remedies to help with the problem.
Increase Your Vitamin Intake
For some people, dry or brittle nails are a symptom of a vitamin deficiency. In this case, you will want to start by making sure you are eating a balanced diet, including an adequate amount of fruits and vegetables.
Next, purchase a good quality multi-vitamin from your local drug store or a health food store. You should be taking this daily. Also, try increasing your intake of vitamins A and B, as a deficiency of these vitamins has been shown to lead to weaker and more brittle fingernails.
Minerals and Biotin
A lack of adequate iron and calcium can lead to brittle nails. You can drink more milk or consume more dairy products for more calcium in your diet. Foods high in iron include green leafy vegetables, lean red meats, tofu, or vitamin fortified breakfast cereals. You may also purchase an iron or calcium supplement.
Biotin, also known as vitamin H, may increase nail strength. If you choose to take Biotin, the recommended dosage is 1000 mcg. taken with a meal, once in the morning and once in the evening.
Moisturize Hands and Nails
All it may take for some people to remedy their brittle fingernails is extra moisturizing. For this, you may choose to try special moisture lotions found at your drug store. One recommendation is to take a tube of lip balm and rub it several times daily all over your hands and nails. Another idea is to purchase a tube of lanolin, which will also soften your hands and nails. Rub the lanolin into your hands and nails several times per day.