I’m a total nail nibbler. Just born that way. I was the girl who chewed her nails off so close that my fingers would bleed and stay sore. It was the queen of bad habits and I couldn’t stop.
My mother would beg me to stop. She has beautiful hands and I’m sure it was just killing her soul that I had nubby little finger tips. She tried everything to get me to stop.
There’s a type of nail polish that has a horrible taste and is supposed to be a deterrent. Well it is for about the first two nails and then you get used to the annoying flavor. My poor mother.
My father had a different approach. “Grow out your nails and I’ll pay you!” This worked on me about once a year and sadly I would go back to nibbling. And no, he never made me pay it back.
I wasn’t embarrassed by my lack of nails until high school. But with the stress of hormones and homework, the nail biting only increased. I was doomed to have ugly hands.
It was in my mid 20’s that a well-meaning, older woman grabbed my hand, looked at my pitiful fingers and told me, “you’re a nail-bitter, looks like you’re chewing the ends of your fingers off.”
She gave me a sad look and walked away.
At first, it hurt my feelings that she would say something like that to me. But then it occurred to me that is was another way that women are judged by others and I didn’t like it.
I wanted to stop gnawing on my nails but not because of what the woman said to me. I wanted to feel more confident about myself. So, I decided I better get with it and figure out a way to stop biting my fingernails.
1. Buy some good quality lotion
I had to start with healing my nail beds. I bought myself some hand lotion that I thought was the “good stuff”. My Nana used it and her fingernails were strong and smooth.
Taking the time to let my nails grow and my cuticles heal seemed to take forever. Every day was a small victory as I was rewarded with a small amount of white nail growth. However, this was my temptation and I had to step it up a notch.
2. Get a professional manicure
I went to a little place in town and treated myself to the works. It was such a luxury to see some progress on my nails. The prettiest nail polish and an hour later, I felt like a new woman.
This simple investment into my psyche really paved the way for me to stop biting my nails. I loved the way my hands looked. The compliments and attention I received made me feel successful.
I’ve stopped biting my nails but that’s not the end of my story. I must maintain what I have or the temptation to pick is too great. A trip to the cosmetic section helped me with this.
Don’t cheap out on a set of nail clippers and emory boards. In fact, I have 3 sets of clippers. One for my purse and one in both bathrooms. If you can clip it, you won’t bite it!
My nails are long and my hands are beautiful now. I’m very proud of my nails so I keep them clipped and shaped. Going to the nail salon is a glamour reward for me that I cherish.
With a little bit of patience, you can try the same method I used. The road to nail biting recovery for me was easier than I thought it would be, even with my childhood years of nail chewing.
If you try and fail to conquer this habit, don’t stop, keep trying. It’s a total process and you might stumble, it’s ok. But if you say tomorrow is another day and start over, you’ll get there with the suggestions I shared with you.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m late for my nail appointment 🙂
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