There are many Youtube videos and blog posts that recommend using salt water to make nails grow. This claim is quite tempting. But it is important to verify if it is really true.
So, does salt water make your nails grow? What does salt do to your nails? Keep reading to find the answer!
Does Salt Water Make Your Nails Grow?
Salt water does not directly prompt nail growth, nor is it a catalyst for your nails to grow faster. However, it can contribute to your nails’ health and in this sense, be good for the growth of your nails.
The average fingernail growth is 0.14 inches a month and toenail growth is 0.063 inches a month. Fingernails will take from 3 to 6 months to completely regrow, whereas toenails will require 12 to 18 months.
The matrix of your nails generates cells that harden and make up the nail plate. it will continue to do this as long as it receives the nutrition it needs and stays in a healthy condition.
Thus, nail growth primarily depends on its nutrition intake and health condition. Other factors can be age, sex, and hereditary traits.
Since we can only control our nail’s nutrition levels and health status, we need to focus on these to ensure that we do not stunt our nails’ growth.
What Can Salt Water Do For Your Nails?
As mentioned earlier, salt can contribute to your nails’ health, and thereby, assist your nails to grow consistently. It does this in four ways:
Brighten your nails
You can use salt water along with baking soda and lemon to get rid of the stains and yellows on your nails. Here is how you do it:
- Add 1.5 cups of warm water, 1 tablespoon of salt, 1 teaspoon of baking soda, and 1 teaspoon of lemon juice in a bowl.
- Mix everything in the bowl to make a slightly paste-like solution.
- Soak your nails in the solution for 10 minutes.
- Scrub your nails gently with a soft-bristled brush.
- Rinse your hands and nails with water and make sure there are no remnants. Be most particular about removing all of the lemon juice. It can cause irritation when you go out in the sun.
Strengthen your nails
You can make a salt water and coconut oil soak for your nails. It is an easy, quick, and inexpensive way to go about it.
You will just need:
- 1 and a half cups of warm water
- 1 tablespoon of sea salt
- 1 tablespoon of coconut oil
- A small bowl/container
- A spoon
- A moisturizer
- In the bowl/container, mix the salt in first. Use a spoon to stir until it completely dissolves in the water.
- Add the coconut oil.
- Soak your nails in the bowl for 10 to 20 minutes.
- Afterward, rinse your hands and pat them dry. Make sure you use a fresh towel.
- Finally, wrap up with a moisturizer.
Note: If you do not have coconut oil, you can also use jojoba oil or olive oil.
Treat infections (Paronychia)
Paronychia is an infection that happens to the skin around a fingernail or toenail. It can lead to swelling, redness, and pain.
One way to treat it is with a saltwater soak.
You will just need:
- A small bowl
- Some salt (table salt, Epsom salt, or saline solution)
- Warm water
It is recommended that you soak 3 – 4 times a day and for 20 minutes each time. If during your soak, the water cools down, you can warm it up again by refilling the bowl with warm water or adding hot water.
Then, dry your nails with a fresh towel and use a cotton swab, pad, or ball to put on a thin layer of petroleum jelly or anti-bacterial ointment.
Caution: But for any of the soaks, make sure that you stick to the specified time. If you soak your nails in salt water for too long, like in normal water, your nails will become brittle.
How to Make Your Nails Grow Longer & Faster?
Take Biotin Supplements
Biotin, a B-complex vitamin, can encourage healthy cell growth and support the protein-building amino acids’ metabolism to ensure consistent nail growth
This, in turn, contributes to assisting your nails to grow longer. By this token, it is not a bad idea to fill your diet with biotin-rich foods and supplements.
You can find biotin naturally in sardines, salmons, carrots, cauliflowers, bananas, sweet potatoes, and eggs. The daily dose varies from person to person, based on many different factors.
Thus, it is necessary that you consult your doctor. But to give you an idea, here are the recommended doses by age:
- Above 10 years old – 30 to 100 mcg
- Infants to 3 years olds – 10 to 20 mcg
- 4 to 6 years old – 25 mcg
- 7 to 10 years old – 10 mcg
Use Cuticle Oil
Cuticle oils work magic on dry and brittle nails. They hydrate the nails and at the same time, promote circulation to stimulate nail growth. As a result, using them can help you grow longer nails.
You just need to dab a few drops of cuticle oil on your nails with a cotton pad or ball to keep chipping and breaking nails at bay. Depending on your product, you can also brush the oil on. After applying, massage your nails with moderate force for a few minutes.
There are so many different cuticle oils sold in the market; they are certainly not difficult to find (both online and offline). Here are two that we like:
Cuccio Naturale Milk and Honey Cuticle Revitalizing Oil
This cuticle oil uses high quality, natural ingredients to do wonders for nails like moisturizing, protecting, and nourishing.
In detail, the formula includes a blend of cold-pressed safflower oil, winterized sunflower oil, and vitamin E. There are also two key ingredients — milk and honey (as said in the name), which soothes, softens, and hydrates.
Other bonuses are that it is free of parabens, has not been tested on animals, and smells wonderful!
Jessica Phenomen Oil Intensive Moisturizer
This is a vegan-friendly and cruelty-free cuticle oil that is rich with natural oils like jojoba oil, almond oil, and rice oil.
It is amazing at deep moisturizing, which, in turn, helps with healing damaged nails. For its value, this oil is recommended by many nail technicians.
A minor drawback is the slightly strong smell. Still, it is only an issue if you are extra sensitive to scents.
Use Nail Strengtheners
These refer to products that make the nails stronger by nourishing and guarding natural nail plates. They often offer the nails a flexible film to reinforce structure and impart nutrients and vitamins.
- When applied everyday or every other day for up to 2 weeks, it can benefit damaged nails.
- When applied once a week or during every new manicure, it can serve as a preventative measure.
Two nail strengtheners that you might like:
Nail-Aid Keratin 3 Day Growth – Nail Treatment & Strengthener
This is a powerful and professional solution for nail growth. It supplies your nails with keratin, which, in turn, lets your nails grow healthier, harder, and longer in as little as 3 days (hence, the name!) Its formula is also quick-drying!
You can use it alone: Clean and dry your nails, then apply two coats, and let them dry between coats.
Or, you can use it with a nail color: Apply it as a base and top coat. Be sure to reapply it every three days. If, in any case you want to remove it, you can just use a regular nail polish remover.
Nail-Aid Biotin Ultimate Strength – Nail Treatment & Strengthener
This is another excellent solution for your nails from Nail-Aid. It gives your nails concentrated biotin that delivers results in as little as 3 days: fortified soft, torn nails.
By the same token, your nails will grow harder and longer. You can use it in the same way as the Keratin 3 Day Growth Nail Treatment & Strengthener above.
Stop Biting, Picking, and Peeling
Biting, picking, and peeling nails are strong but incredibly bad habits. They hurt your nails and stunt growth. So, it is essential that you get rid of these habits. It is easier said than done — we totally get it.
Here are tips to help you:
- Trim or clip your nails regularly to keep them short. When they are short, you cannot bite, pick, or peel them.
- Apply anti-biting polish. These are designed to leave an unfavorable taste in your mouth. So, you will think twice before biting them the next time. A few that we have seen others using:
- Cover your nails with stickers or tapes. When you see these, you will be reminded not to bite, pick, or peel them. They are relatively affordable, so you do not have to worry about draining your wallet.
- Get rid of the dead skin around your nails. This does two good things for the overall health of your nails.
- First, it entails you do not have to go for a manicure and use tools to push under the nails to clear dirt, which can cause Onycholysis (the separation of a nail from its nail bed).
- Second, it prevents against clogging, which can create an environment for fungal infections to occur. The infections can thicken the tissues beneath the nail plate and lift the edges of the nail. By the same token, it is likely to chip, split, or break.
Avoid Glue-On Nails, Toxic Polishes, and Removers
Glue-on nails, toxic polishes, and removers can all weaken your nails. As a result, they break, chip, and split easily. So, to maintain your nails in tip-top condition, use non-toxic products for your nails.
Polishes should not have drying additives—formaldehyde, toluene, and camphor, while removers should not be purely acetone. Go for ones with added vitamins and moisturizing agents, instead.
Here are two that we especially love:
Plant Therapy Natural Acetone-Free Nail Polish Remover
This polish remover is gentle but effective. It does not instill the traditional harsh drying effects of a polish remover thanks to its plant-derived ingredients. There is also a subtle tropical floral scent that is soft on the nose.
You will appreciate that it is easy to use. All you need to do is pulp the disc of the bottle to dispense the solution on a cotton ball or pad. Just make sure you do not forget to close the cap when you are not using it.
Ella + Mila Soy Nail Polish Remover
This is another fantastic acetone-free polish remover. However, please note that it is only made for nail lacquer and not gel polish. It is packed with vitamins A, C, E, and lavender essential oil to moisturize your nails. You can rest assured that it will not be harsh on your skin, causing damage or dryness.
For the best results, make sure you wipe all your nails first, then apply it, and let it sit for at least 30 seconds before you wipe it again. You should also ensure that you use just enough remover; do not use it in excess.
As you have read, the answer to “Does salt water make your nails grow?” is sadly, NO. Salt water cannot prompt nail growth.
However, it can still be beneficial for our nails by supplying iron and calcium and getting rid of dead skin. By using salt water, we can partially control our nail’s nutrition levels and health, and thus, be sure that we do not stunt our nails’ growth.
Hopefully, you have found the information in this article helpful. Leave questions and thoughts in the comments. Also, please help us share this with other readers like your family members and friends. Thank you!
Table of Contents
- Does Salt Water Make Your Nails Grow?
- Nail Growth
- What Can Salt Water Do For Your Nails?
- How to Make Your Nails Grow Longer & Faster?