Don’t you feel like you have your life together when your nails are thriving? Same. There’s just something about the feeling of long and strong nails with a fresh paint job that can turn your entire day around. On the other hand, breaking a nail is downright discouraging, but if you feel like your nails are always breaking or have been short and stubby forever, don’t give up hope just yet. This is just a sign that you aren’t giving your digits the TLC they need.
One of the best things we can do for A+ nails is taking vitamins. Vitamins for nails contain the nutrients to strengthen brittle digits and give you the length you’re after. Think of having strong nails like having healthy hair—nutrients are so necessary. We tapped two leading doctors of podiatric medicine, Jackie Sutera and Emily Splichal, to fill us in on the best vitamins for nails and their takes on how to achieve the nail goals you want.
“If you notice chipping and frequent breaking of your nails, this is a sign you may be nutrient deficient,” explains Splichal. “You may also notice that your skin is dry, your hair is brittle, and your nails are cracked as the deficiencies typically happen at the same time.”
When trying to strengthen and grow out your nails, you have to be consistent and patient with the process, says Sutera: “Most people report noticeable changes after the two-month mark.” And according to Splichal, you may have to wait even longer for real changes. “Typically you want to allow at least one month of consistent supplementation to note an effect [or] change. However, sometimes it can take up to three months to see a benefit,” Splichal explains. But supplements aren’t a one-and-done solution.
“In addition to a healthy diet full of fresh fruits and vegetables, I suggest vitamins for nails should be taken daily for a lifetime. These healthy changes are lifestyle habits that shouldn’t only be done for a month and then you revert back to bad habits.”
Keep scrolling for their go-to vitamins that’ll bring life to your nails.
Sutera’s favorite vitamin for nails is biotin, also known as vitamin B7 or vitamin H: “I call it my beauty pill because it’s shown to increase nail thickness and decrease splitting in individuals with brittle nails.” In fact, according to two studies featured in The New York Times, several patients noticed stronger and longer nails after taking biotin for a few months.
“Biotin is a nutrient that plays a major part in maintaining the health of our hair, nails, and skin,” she says. It’s “commonly added to hair and skin beauty products, although it’s believed to be better absorbed and most beneficial when ingested.” Her shopping recommendation? “Look for high-quality brands like Natrol.”
Splichal is also a believer in Biotin. Her go-to is the above option from Solgar.
Vitamin C has proven to help our bodies produce collagen, which is an essential protein that strengthens our nails tremendously. Deficiencies in vitamin C can result in brittle nails, which is why Splichal recommends Life Extension's Vitamin C because of its trusted ingredients.
Black Currant Oil
Black currant is a fruit commonly found in Europe and Asia and, when taken in herbal supplement form, is proven to strengthen weak nails in over six to eight weeks. According to Splichal, black currant carries healthy fats that’ll give your nails the protein they need.
Branched Chain Amino Acids
Branched chain amino acids help with tissue repair and regeneration in your nails. More importantly, Splichal notes that they provide your nails with lots of protein for nail growth.
This is another one of Splichal’s essentials for nails because krill oil contains important nutrients like omega-3 fatty acids, biotin, and zinc. All of these goods are proven to help stimulate nail growth, strength, and the overall health of your nails.
Up next, see how one little secret will work wonders for your nails.