Nail Cycling Is The Key To Keeping Your Manicure Strong

Your nails say a lot to the world. They reveal your mood, show your playful side, and even look a little sexy. Not to mention how they can coordinate with your newest style perfectly. So, taking care of them and giving them a break every so often is vital. Providing them a little room to breathe, also known as nail cycling, helps you prepare to take on your next textured nail art trend.

Skin and hair cycling techniques can be found all over TikTok and Instagram. Cycling is simply taking a little siesta, so to speak, from your normal routine. For example, in hair cycling, you rotate the products and treatments like shampoo, conditioner, and styling products to heal damage and promote growth. This principle is the same when you apply it to your nails. Taking a break from gel or shellac nails to moisturize and strengthen cuticles and nail beds keeps them from lasting damage and breakage, setting you up for a perfect manicure experience.

Get the ins and outs of how and when to nail cycle. You'll also learn a few tips along the way to make sure your nails get lasting benefits.

How and when to cycle your nails

While those gel nails might look amazing, repeatedly removing and adding gel takes a toll on your nails. You'll find that they might look brittle or even thinner than they used to. If so, it's definitely time to give them a little freedom. Nail cycling is just allowing your nail beds and cuticles to relax by keeping them away from harsh products. So, to cycle them, you'll give yourself a short vacation from the gel nail cycle, according to Federico Beauty Institute. Rather than getting a full set of gel nails when you hit the salon, you might opt for a polish or a naked manicure. Your cuticles will reap the rewards of being free from the harsh chemicals that a gel nail manicure can bring.

And as the word cycle implies, taking a break has a timeframe. Tina Wang, Lunula Salon founder, stated in Well+Good that "for every eight weeks of gel polish, give your nails a 1-2 week break." It's also important to give your nails a little longer if you notice any thinning or breakage. The break is only half the battle, though. You'll also want to use these techniques to get the most out of your nail downtime. 

Tips to help you get the most out of nail cycling

Taking off the polish and avoiding the chemicals is the first step to returning that beautiful strength to your nails. It's also important during this time to add hydration. Here's where you grab the moisturizers and nail oils. Ama Quashie, the founder of Ama Salon, pointed out to the Federico Beauty Institute that "cuticle oil works by hydrating the cuticle and the nail bed, which is why it's such an important step in nail care, whether you're growing your nails or simply want them to look their best."

In addition to massaging oils into the cuticle and hydrating, you might consider adding a few more leafy greens and water to your diet. There are several foods that are beneficial to nail health, like biotin. Therefore, you might consider eating more dark leafy salads or adding some nuts to your snack pack. For example, a salad with eggs, nuts, and a serving of olive oil is the perfect concoction to help your nails from the inside out.

Dermatologists love that skin cycling is trending on TikTok and Instagram. So, why not take that knowledge and apply it to your nail beds? Giving your fingers a little break from the gel or shellac cycle can reap amazing rewards, like strong, healthy nails ready to party!