Brittle nails are your worst enemy, once they grow to the perfect length – they are already on the verge of breaking again.

There are several factors which effect this, from the food you eat to daily chores, your nails need constant care and attention especially during the cold snap.

To learn more about this and to find out the root of your nail breakage, Patricia Boland, skin specialist at Colorescience reveals the top reasons as to why your nails are breaking and how you can grow and maintain the perfect manicured set.

1) Bad nail polish remover
Nail removers which are poorly made and cheap are not friendly to your nails. Not only will it require extra effort to remove the polish from your nails, but it also can make them become dry and reduce the moisture which results in brittle and weak nails. If you are using nail polish remover always be sure to invest in a trustworthy brand and not to use it excessively. Acetone tends to dehydrate your nails so avoid any removers that contain this ingredient. 

2) Lack of iron
Weak nails can be caused by low levels of iron or anemia. Iron helps form hemoglobin; a molecule that shuttles red blood cells loaded with oxygen directly into your nail. Without this your nails will suffer from stunted growth. It’s best to load up on foods which are rich in irons such as spinach, dark chocolate and white beans.

3) Dehydration
If you’re not drinking enough water your entire body will suffer including your nails. Not drinking enough water is in fact a major factor in many cases of brittle nails so it’s best to drink the correct amount a day which is around 9 cups.

4) Lack of moisturiser
Your nails not only need moisture from the inside but also from the outside. The best way to keep on top of this is to apply frequent moisturiser throughout the day. Keep it handy in your bag or desk at work and apply whenever you think about it but more so after your hands have been wet.

5)  Excessive water
By this we mean the water that meets your hands and not the water you drink. Doing the washing up for example can take a big toll on your nails as soaps and solvents from the liquid can have a drying effect on your nails. A simple solution to the household chore side effect is to pop on a pair of gloves which will protect your nails from the bad chemicals and keep them from drying out.

6) Too many manicures
If you are a nail fanatic, it can be hard to cut down on how many manicures you have each month or more! If you are constantly powering your nails with acrylics or gel nails, then this can damage your nail beds and leave them feeling brittle and weak. Always ensure you take a few months break between each treatment and use a nail hardener instead to build your nails back up to their natural state.

7)  You pick your nail polish off
Peeling off you polish, gel or traditional, doesn’t just remove your coat of nail polish but it also removes part of the top layer of your nails – which causes your nails to thin. It can be easy to do especially as your manicure starts to chip but if you do this an excessive amount it can take months for them to grow back in a healthy condition. If you see your nails have started to chip away, take them off with remover as soon as you can so the temptation isn’t there.