Healthy Nails: The Journey

Hello My Smitten's

UPDATE: (In an attempt to make viewing my journey more convenient and user friendly I will begin to put each new week at the beginning (at the top) of the post.  To view older weeks and to see the introduction week please scroll down.)

Week 12: June 30th  Conclusion

I think week 12 is a good week to end my journey.  I am very pleased with my growth.  It was a very slow start but once the growth started there was no stopping it.  I have officially crushed the myth that my nails won't grow.  The products that aided in my nail growth are 5000 mg of Biotin, Duri Rejuvacote, and OPI Nail Envy.  I will continue to use all of these products.  My nails are a tad bit shorter this week than last week because they were getting so long that each time I put a glove on at work my nails would break through them.  Therefore, I filed them down just a little.  Thank you for coming on this journey with me.  All the products that I used were highlighted (below) through the weeks of the journey.  If you have any questions please feel free to ask.

Week 11: June 23rd

"Hey, what happened to Week 10?" You ask?  I was on vacation last week so therefore I missed a whole week of blogging.  Without delay lets see how my nail growth is going.

This is a comparison between Week 1 and Week 11

My growth is still going amazing.  I am still using 5000 mg of Biotin daily and Duri Rejuvacote and OPI Nail Envy. 

Week 9: June 9th

This is a comparison of Week 1 to 5 to Week 9

I'm still seeing progress.  I never thought/knew my nails could grow out so nicely. 

I am still using Biotin.  I am up to 5000 mg a day.  I have not experienced any breakouts with the Biotin.  I still use Duri Rejuvacote and OPI Nail Envy.  I moisturize my hands with Hand Food or pretty much any lotion after each wash (for the most part) and every night before bed.  I also treat my cuticles with cuticle oils and creams (scroll down to see various oils and creams that I use.).  

Week 8: June 2nd

This is a comparison of Week 1 to Week 8.  Progress, Progress, Progress!

Last week I had more d_n splitting nails can you believe it??? I am so over the top with these splitting nails!  On a much lighter note, I found an awesome way to repair splits in nails that I read in Nail It! Magazine.  It involves a coffee filter and glue.  I won't give too much away now because I am going to do a post on the process.  Aside from the splitting, I had another awesome week of growth.

Here is the nail split, straight down the middle (on the left).  This is the repair with a coffee filter (On the right).  It will protect the nail from further splits until it can grow out.

Oh and more cuticle oil/cream mania.  I heard lots of good things about this Burt's Bee's Lemon Butter Cuticle Cream so I got it :).  

Week 7: May 26th

Since I was having such an awful time with splitting nails I decided to take the plunge and purchase.  Duri Rejuvacote.  I got it from Walmart for $9.99.  I have read some awesome reviews on this stuff.  My new routine is = 1. Rejuvacote (1 coat), 2. OPI Nail Envy (1-2 coats), 3. Nail Polish, 4. Rejuvacote (1 coat), 5. Poshe top coat.  So far so good; my nails feel very healthy and strong.  An additional plus is that I have little to no shrinkage now that I put a coat of Rejuvacote over the polish before I apply Poshe.

I have heard people talking about this Sally Hansen Cuticle remover so I decided to try it. I absolutely love it.   I guess all cuticle removers do the same thing but I feel like this really gets the job done.  I use this about twice a week.  I absolutely do not cut my cuticles (anymore) that is a No No!  When cuticles are cut with nippers and such, there is a risk of cutting live skin (when cuticles are cut or removed the idea is to remove the dead skin that builds up.).  When live skin is cut bacteria can be introduced to the cut, which can lead to an infection.

I have gone cuticle oil crazy.  In an effort to have youthful hands with strong healthy nails and cuticles I basically put on cuticle oil each time after I wash my hands.  I started using this mini gelish cuticle oil that I have.  Not only does it smell good but it is pocket sized; I take it every where I go.

Here are my nails.  Another great week.  My growth is amazing!  I am very pleased.  I am still taking Biotin and still no breakouts or acne.

Here goes that thumb.  It is slowly coming around.


I am on a mission to healthy strong nails.  I am not too concerned with length because I'm not supposed   to wear my nails too long due to my job.  Recently my nails have been breaking excessively, splitting, and peeling and it has become very frustrating.  My main goal is to try different techniques to develop healthy strong nails.  I also want to see if, just if, my nails will grow for kicks.  

I started taking Biotin April 4th.  

Biotin is supposed to support nail and hair growth.  During my research of Biotin many people said that the use of Biotin caused excessive break outs (yikes).  I will definitely keep you updated on that one! 

I also started using OPI Nail Envy Original.  Yeah so the story behind why I have so many is because  I found them at Marshalls for $7.99.  I decided to pick one up.  When I came home I did some research on OPI Nail Envy and I found only positive reports and outcomes.  I also discovered that it normally retails from $8 - $15.99 so I really got it for a steal.  I went right back to Marshalls the next day and picked up two more bottles.  I sure hope it works wonders for me.  

Here is my nail routine:

I file and buff my nails; I like my nubs square for now.  They have been round in the past. (Update: June 2) I no longer buff my nails.  Buffing the nails, in some cases, tends to weaken and thin out the nail.  I file my nails in one direction instead of back and forth.  The back and forth action also weakens the nails.

I use cuticle remover.  It is a good idea to put some underneath the nails too.  It helps to remove the dead skin under the nails.  

I use cuticle oil.  This cuticle oil is the absolute best. [(Update: June 2) You will see in newer post that I have gone through my fair share of cuticle oils and creams.  The principal here is to keep the cuticles moisturized and hydrated.]  I have tons and tons of cuticle oils but this one by far gets my stamp of approval.  I got it in a nail kit from Sams Club.  

WEEK 1: April 14th 

My nails are brittle, they are splitting, and they break when I look at them!  

Week 2: April 21st

Call me crazy but I have noticed a little growth (less than an inch).  The change that is very noticeable is the strength of my nails!  My nails are super strong.  I cannot believe a whole week has gone by and I did not break or chip one nail (wozzers).  I wish I knew if it was a result of the Biotin or the OPI Nail Envy but I really can't tell while I am using both.  So far so good, I am happy with the results!

Week 3: April 28th

I had some setbacks :(.  I have two breaks (yikes).  I don't know what happened.  I was doing so well.  I guess those are the breaks, pun intended, of life.  I am still taking the Biotin and using the OPI Nail Envy.  I also started putting Orly Nail Armor over the OPI Nail Envy. [(Update: June 2) I no longer use the Orly Nail Armor. I have added Duri Rejuvacote to my routine.  My updated routine can be seen in Week 8: June 2.]  I hope to have improvements next week.  

Look how horrible this nail split straight down the middle (Ouch).  

The thumb nail on the left hand (below) grows extremely fast.  Look, compare it to week 1.  I wish all of my nails grew that fast.  I have to file down the thumb so that it is even to the other nails.  

Week 4: May 5th

Oh my, this week was horrible.  I had a major break and I chipped the only nail that seemed to be growing. You remember that split thumb nail from last week? Well I was trying to hold on to that baby until I could grow it out.  That did not work out so well.  It broke all the way down.  Then my other thumb on my left hand decided to chip.  That was sad because that was the only nail that seemed to be growing at a rapid rate out of all of my nails.  I am still taking the Biotin (it has been a month now) and I am still using OPI Nail Envy and Orly Nail Armor. [(Update: June 2) I am no longer using Orly Nail Armor.  My updated routine can be seen in Week 8: June 2. ] 

Eww, that's a bad break and an ugly thumb. 

My other thumb.

Week 5: May 12th

I am making a come back this week.  Last week I had several bad breaks.  This week I had some nails split straight down the middle, which is very frustrating but I'm just rolling with the punches.  I filed my nails down nicely in preparation for another week of nail tragedy growth.  I am sad to say that I am not seeing big improvements in my nail health from the Biotin or the OPI Nail Envy.  I am going to stick with them though.  I am however, seeing hair growth in my eyelashes, which I am not complaining about at all.  My eyelashes look absolutely long and luscious.  I have had several people ask me if I was wearing false lashes.  If only my nails would grow.  Oh and an update from week 1 about Biotin possibly causing severe cystic acne, well I have not experienced that side effect thank goodness.  

Week 6: May 19th

Last week was AWESOME!  After 6 whole weeks I am finally beginning to see growth.  YAY!

My Poor ugly thumb nails.  They will grow out in due time.  


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