This fall, let’s stop for a minute and break your bad habits. From forgetting to take off your makeup at night to eating past a certain hour, it’s time to *finally* end your not-so-chic ways. But there is one bad beauty habit that beats them all — nail-biting. Whether it’s a nervous tick or a serious compulsion, you’re probably guilty of committing this no-no at some point in your life. Having hot nails to pull off those fall nail trends is tough, y’all, but it isn’t impossible. There are a bunch of little things you can do or avoid doing that will change the state of your digits forever. Think you don’t have what it takes to have amazing nails naturally? Scroll down to see how you can make it happen.

Woman eating healthy breakfast

1. Eat well. If you want to have strong, healthy nails, then you *need* to be conscious about what you put in your body. That means eating plenty of protein. Opt for fish, lean poultry, pork and vegetables that pack protein. Also, make sure you take your vitamins and supplements, like biotin, to keep your nails strong and thick. (Photo via Getty)


2. Upkeep your nails. One of the best ways to achieve long tips is by constantly managing and maintaining them. While you don’t want to rack up a bill by going to the nail salon every week, you can opt for an at-home DIY that’s easy and cheap. You’ll be less likely to mess with your nails if they look chic AF.


3. File them. Nothing is worse than a chipped nail — unless it’s a chipped nail with a broken edge. Yuck! Try to have a nail file with you at all times to get rid of those random nasty edges that can ruin a whole mani (and snag your clothes!). A chipped nail is basically just an invitation for you to tamper with it, so get to filin’.


4. Don’t pick at them. If you feel nervous or bored, whatever you do, don’t pick at your nails. If you truly want to break this habit, you might have to consider replacing it with a more attractive go-to (hair-twirling, maybe?). The reality is that picking at your nails is more than just unsightly — it’s unhealthy. When you slowly chip away at your cuticle and nail beds, you invite unwanted infection and bacteria. Leave cuticle maintenance to the professionals and opt for pushing them back in between salon sessions.


5. Maintain your cuticles. Speaking of cuticles — aside from eating a healthy diet, one of the best ways to have strong, healthy nails is by not fiddling with your cuticles — like at all. While a lot of ladies just love to get rid of this part of their nails, it’s actually there to protect your digits from bacteria. Moisturize them with lotion or oil to keep them healthy and leave them be. Your nails will look gorgeous. Trust us.

Woman Getting a Manicure

6. Try to avoid fake nails. If you’ve ever donned fake nails before, you probably know how bedraggled your natural tips look after you take them off — so thin and fragile. Between gels, shellac, silk, fiberglass and acrylic nails, the opportunities are endless for creating long-lasting damage.Give your poor nails a break every once and a while with a more natural look.


7. Use a top and base coat. Sometimes you need to take extra steps to keep your nails strong and beautiful. That means it’s important to invest in the good stuff. Opt for a gel top coat and regular base polish to prevent your color from chipping (which helps nip that pesky biting habit in the bud). Nutrients like vitamin E, Calcium and Protein can be found in many base polishes, so you have no reason not to swipe it on. A quick word of wisdom — make sure that the base of your nails is completely dry (that means getting rid of that oil too) before adding products. This will allow the polish to stick easier and stay on longer. Soon you’ll have fresh, manicured nails that will grow and grow in no time.

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