Nail care

How to Care for Fingernails Properly

Mary Smith
By Mary Smith. Updated: January 16, 2017
How to Care for Fingernails Properly

Fingernails are one of the body parts that can define a person most. In fact, many people pay attention to hands because they think it says a lot about the other person's personality, their lifestyle, etc.

Caring for your nails properly is important not only for aesthetic reasons, but for health reasons too. You can get hangnails, your nails could break or you can even have small cuts on your nails too. This is why OneHowTo would like to give you a full guide on how to care for fingernails properly, give these tips a try at home!

You may also be interested in: What Causes Hangnails

Steps to follow:


It's important to spend some time on your nails at least once a week to pamper them as they deserve to be. We'll start by removing any nail varnish you may have and filing each nail to give it the shape we want and make them mildly shorter.

After doing so, you need to cleanse the cuticles, which are the skin part that we have by the nails and that serve the purpose of making sure our nails grow perfect. It is also an imperfection protector, which is why you should not get rid of them but rather hydrate them so they are strong.

How to Care for Fingernails Properly - Step 1

In order to care for fingernails properly, we're going to give you some cutting and filing tips you should take into account to get a perfect result and sport beautiful fingernails:

  • Instead of using nail scissors it's best to use nail clippers as the cut is more precise
  • Cut your nails straight, just over the fingertip (a few millimeters) in order to avoid ingrown nails. This will also make them look pretty and it will make it easier for you to shape them as you wish.
  • When you start filing them, you should try to use the file slightly tilted upwards, sliding it on the nails in the same direction.
How to Care for Fingernails Properly - Step 2

Another thing to take into account is that it's vitally important to moisturize nails properly in order to keep them nourished and strong. It's essential to hydrate nails from the inside and the outside, so it's recommended to drink 2 liters of water per day so your nails are in perfect condition.

Use an olive oil mask once a week. It's highly moisturizing and it's help nourish your nails and avoid breakage. To do so you only need to dip your nails in a bowl with olive oil with your nails completely clean. Leave them soaking for 10 minutes and wash your hands with natural soap. Put on some moisturizing cream for some extra humidity.

How to Care for Fingernails Properly - Step 3

Last but not least, once you decide to apply nail polish, use an oxygenating layer beforehand. Paint your nails to make them harder and avoid breakage.

Make sure you apply fine layers and wait until each layer is totally dry before applying the next one. This will avoid your nail polish from flaking or clumping.

Nail art is all the rage nowadays, so take a look at some of the easiest nail art ideas you can do yourself at home to make your nails look stunning.

How to Care for Fingernails Properly - Step 4

When you take your nail polish off you must be careful when choosing the right product, as nail polish removers are the main cause for brittle nails and breakage. It's recommendable to choose nail polish removers with moisturizing or hardening properties, as they not only get rid of the polish but also care for your nails.

It's also important to avoid nail polish removers with acetone, so take a look at the alternatives in our article on how to remove nail polish without acetone.

How to Care for Fingernails Properly - Step 5

If you want to read similar articles to How to Care for Fingernails Properly, we recommend you visit our Beauty & Personal Care category.


  • During the summer remember to use sunscreen on your hands to protect them from UV rays
  • Eating healthy is also essential for taking care of your nails and making your hands look simply lovely
Write a comment
What did you think of this article?
Barbara Aguon
Thank you. I'm attempting to provide our frontline staff with simple instructions on how to care for their hands. You win! Not exactly but very close.
OneHowTo Editor
Thanks Barbara! Good luck with the staff training
This helped me alought
1 of 6
How to Care for Fingernails Properly