I Quit Nail-Biting After 30 Years, and with These Easy Tips You’ll Stop Too!
So you’re a nail-biter. Yeah, me too. I’ve been biting my nails for as long as I can remember. Despite my social butterfly exterior, on the interior, I’m quite the nervous nellie. How I became this way I do not know, but what I do know is, I cope with this nervousness by nail-biting.
I was bad when it came to this. I would bite, pick and peel them. When I drew blood I vowed to stop but it wouldn’t last long. I was embarrassed by my hands, always hiding them. But it took one chance event that would change my nail-biting urge forever….ok, for the last 30 plus days.
How did I overcome my urge for nail-biting, and how can these tips help you?
I got a mani
This is how it started. I found myself in a pickle last month as I needed to get some professional photos taken of me for business purposes. The photographer told me, “Val get your nails done because your nails now are not gonna cut it.” So I took my ass to a neighborhood spot over on Myrtle Ave in Brooklyn and got a mani.
While I wasn’t feeling my mani at all that didn’t stop something from triggering in me to decide from that moment on I would STOP biting my nails.
Listen, I’ve been making this same pledge for about 30 years and I only managed it once for my wedding in 2008. Sadly my newly grown nails wouldn’t see my honeymoon as I clipped them off before the end of the night.
So why the sudden change now? For one, I overall liked the way my hands looked. I had grown woman hands and it completed the look of my hand with my wedding ring. Secondly, after two weeks with the silk wraps, I was able to overcome the feeling that comes along with having nails. It’s a weightiness and the ability to feel the nail on the tips of my fingers. It’s this feeling (along with that nervous inner voice) which causes me to peel and clip my nails. But because I had spent money to get my nails done I was less inclined to pick at them, although I did Google ‘how to remove silk wraps’.
But I stayed the course and kept them for a full two weeks, and removed them as I saw it was time to let them go. Now the true test would begin. Besides mani’s, what other ways could I keep my nail-biting tick at bay?
Paint my nails
The first thing I did after removing the tips was file my nails and paint them. I used Sally Hansen Diamond Strength Hardner (cause that’s all I had), and they looked good. But something was missing. So I decided to shop for some nail color. It’s fall so I chose Revlon Colorstay Gel Envy in two shades: Blackjack and Queen of Hearts and after a couple of applications, my nails looked fantastic! It’s amazing how much growth one can get over 14 days.
With my nails freshly painted I knew I didn’t wanna do anything to fuck them up. So I became more mindful of the activities I was doing so I wouldn’t chip them. I had the urge to pick at them but how shiny and healthy my hands looked kept me from getting my clippers.
Keep my hands busy
If you’re looking to keep your nails intact then you need to keep your hands busy. I have a fidget spinner that I keep at my desk and when I feel the urge to pick at my nails, which is all the time, I whip out my spinner and give it a whirl. It gives my hands the needed distraction that will deter me from focusing on my nails.
Keep my nails manageable
I plan on keeping my nails around this length. The shorter they are the less maintenance I will have. But if they get longer they’ll become a distraction. I’m already finding myself obsess over how my thumbnail clicks against my phone screen. There’s something about that sound that intrigues me. Also, by keeping my nails at a certain length means I can continue to do my own mani’s in between salon visits.
Remember to take my vitamins
The day after I got the silk wraps I carried my ass down to Target for some Hair, Nail and Skin vitamins. I got the gummy kind as those are the only ones I will remember to take, cause candy. These 3 little gummy squares a day is giving my body the extra boost of vitamins it needs to keep my hair healthy, my skin clear and my nails super strong.
Take it one day at a time
The fact is while your nails grow quickly, it will take time to get them where you want them. So instead of worrying about how much time it will take for your nails can touch your palms when clenching a fist, celebrate not being able to remember when you last clipped and picked with your nails.
Are you ready to take the challenge?
So if you’re ready to end your nail-biting urges join me on my 30 Day Nail Biting Challenge. Just because I made it 30 days so far that doesn’t mean I’m completely out of the woods. This simple calendar (which is downloadable) will keep you on track of your progress. Check off each day you keep your nails intact. Celebrate your milestone at the end of the month, and every month after that. If you slip up, it’s okay. Start over as many times as you need till it becomes a way of life.