Follow These Nail Tricks and You'll Never Need a Mani Again

You're getting ready to head out the door for a big event, a big interview, a first date, dinner with your parents. Then you realize you nails look as if you've been caught in a war zone, and you're losing.

Lack of time, money, or even interest can keep us from not paying attention to our nails. But PureWow has given us easy tips for keep your polish-free nails looking great—and none of these involve a trip to the nail salon.

  1. Eat more protein. Adding more protein to your diet will help to keep your nails from breaking as often, making the post-nail-break, "Excuse me, do you have a nail file?" troll much less frequent. Your office will thank you.
  2. Short and round. Another way to avoid the search for the nail file is to keep your nails relatively short. Filing your nails from the side toward the center (instead of sawing back and forth on the top like the receptionist in an '80s comedy) will make them less likely to snag on something and break.
  3. Brighten your nails. Whether you're a gardener who spends most of her time with her hands in the dirt or your nails just make you look like one, you can brighten your nails pretty easily. Make a paste with a tablespoon of baking soda and a good squeeze of lemon juice and scrub it on your nails with a toothbrush. Let is sit for a few minute and rinse.
  4. Buff up the shine. Shiny nails look much more "done". Use a nail buffer to add shine to the nail beds, but be careful, too much nail buffing can weaken your nails. Keep it to once a week.
  5. Bring out the gloves. When you're washing dishes, bring out those lovely yellow gloves. Your nails will thank you for limiting the amount of water and chemicals they're exposed to by looking great.
  6. Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize. Your fingertips might be oily enough to make you break out if you touch your face too much, but your nails still need way more moisture than you think. Stop your cuticles getting thirty with a cuticle cream. For an at-home trick, soak your nails in olive oil for 10 minutes before you put on hand cream.

Get ready to be stopped on the street with lucrative hand modeling contracts, because your hands are going to look great.