When you want a bright and joyful manicure, yellow nails are the way to go — but if your digits are giving off a lemony vibe even when you don’t have a drop of nail polish on them, it could be your body’s way of signalling that something is wrong. Despite its frightening reveal, the beauty woe is far more frequent than you might imagine.
Sure, you can get a manicure to cover up the appearance of yellow-tinted nails (provided the colour is aesthetic and not indicative of a health problem), but there’s also a simple solution to remove the colour at home. Here’s the scoop on what causes yellow nails and how to treat them.
To be honest, yellow nails are commonly attributed to the overuse of nail polish (#beentheredonethat). While this is mostly correct, it is not the entire tale. Nail yellowing usually indicates that you’ve used a harsh product to colour your nails. The reported stain could indicate that you left your polish on for too long or you have an underlying fungal infection. However, even brief manicures can leave a yellow hue known to professionals as pigment migration.
Yellow nails, thankfully, are not irreversible. In fact, once you’ve identified the underlying cause – you can typically treat the discoloration at home or get the assistance of a professional. If the cause is cosmetic (e.g., nail polish or self-tanner), it’s important to discontinue the use of these products. Instead, use bright or neutral lacquers and a mitt or glove to apply self-tanner.
Thick, brittle, yellow toenails are frequently caused by onychomycosis, a fungal infection. Trichophyton rubrum, a dermatophyte, is the most common culprit. Other factors may also be to blame. Repetitive microtrauma to the nail (striking the toe against the inside of the shoe) can cause the nail to become brittle and fungus-like over time.
Injuries to the toenail, such as stubbing it or dropping a heavy object on it, can permanently damage the nail-producing cells (known as the nail matrix) and cause the nail to thicken and become wavy.
If your nails are damaged (and hence substantially yellowing), consult your doctor about alternate choices. A nail strengthener is a topically administered treatment that treats nail fragility and dystrophy such as splitting, breaking, and peeling. However, in severe cases, a visit to a medical expert is required.
Even simple nail paint can cause yellowed nails, so it should only be used occasionally. Certain nail polishes contain substances such as triphenyl phosphate, toluene, formaldehyde, and dibutyl phthalate – which can damage and leach nutrition from the nails. As a result, they darken, become brittle, and feeble. Keratin or biotin pills can aid in this situation. We also enjoy the biotin supplement for nails because it improves nail health from the inside out.
Mix 3 to 4 tablespoons of hydrogen peroxide with 1/2 cup of water. A friendly reminder: never apply antibacterial cream to your skin without first diluting it. Soak the nails for two minutes after thoroughly mixing the solution. Then, using a soft toothbrush, carefully scrape the surface of the nails and rinse with water. If necessary, repeat this step two to three times per week.
Now that you know exactly how to get rid of yellow nails, it’s time to protect them!
Featured Image: Instagram