In a world of fast food, same day delivery and instant messaging, it is only to be expected that we want our nails to grow overnight too!
You know what it is like: your middle nail broke and you want it to catch up with the rest, so that you do not have to cut them all down.
Or maybe you have bitten them down to the quick and you cannot wait for them to grow back again.
Sadly, this regrowth will always take time, so in a world where we want everything now, is there any way to make our nails grow faster? We took a look!
How nails grow
Our nails start growing at week 20 in the womb and they never stop.1
They start to form in the nail root as living cells group together and multiply.
As these new cells grow, they push the older, dead ones out into the open, to form the nail that we see.
This is where these cells form their shape, flattening and hardening to form the tough, hard nail plate.
Our nails continue to replenish themselves in order for nail trauma or damage to grow out.
They use nutrients from within the body to keep this process going. This means our fingers can be protected by the nail.
For more information on what our nails are made from and why we have them
, head over to the Health Hub.
What factors help nail growth?
One of the key factors in nail growth is a B vitamin called Biotin
This B7 vitamin (sometimes called vitamin H) allows the body to turn food into energy and has been found to boost the strength of hair and nails.3
can be found naturally in foods such as cooked eggs, sardines, nuts, cauliflower, bananas and mushrooms and can also be taken as a daily supplement. It is therefore useful as a vitamin for nail growth.
As well as finding ways to encourage grow nails fast, there are also things you can do to avoid harming them.
Exposing your nails to water can lead to breakages, so try to wear gloves when you are doing housework or immersing your hands for anything other than washing them.
You may also find that hand sanitiser, detergent and other cleaning products can be harmful to your nails, so protect them where you can and keep them moisturised.
It is not the easiest problem to solve, but the climate you live in, also impacts on your nail growth.
Mild winters and hot summers help to create vitamin D
, which is great for your nails, so you could move abroad, take lots of holidays or simply take a supplement!4
Your general health will always impact on the growth of your nails.
If your body is lacking something vital, or has other health concerns, it can affect the natural processes such as nail growth. So, for tip top nails, you need tip top health.
Make sure you look at what your body might be lacking and see what natural sources can provide it for you or turn to a supplement.
This not only means that your nails will grow but your overall health will also improve, which has got to be a good thing!
Strength is length: the best way to grow nails
Getting your nails to grow faster is one thing, but this will only be successful if they are strong too.
Using nail hardeners can prevent nails from breaking too easily, allowing them to grow to the desired length.
Simply paint it onto the nails like a polish and let it work its magic. You should take care not to use them too often though, as they can be quite harsh on your nails.
Keeping your cuticles healthy is always vital, as these protect your nails as they grow through into the open air.
Make sure you moisturise your hands and use cuticle oils regularly to help your nails reach their full glory.
Look after your nails as you age
One unavoidable factor in nail growth is age. Our cell reproduction slows as we get older, so the production of new nail cells will reduce also and your nails will not grow as fast.
This means it is important to take extra care of your health and nails as you get older.
You can find more information on what helps nails grow, including tips on strengthening your nails
, on our Health Hub.