Painting my fingernails is one of my guilty pleasures. My husband thinks its a waste of time but I feel so much more "put together" when my nails are well manicured and glossy. When I'm feeling *really* into the spa moment, I do my toes too. =D
I can't, however, afford to get them done. Even if I could, that takes away part of the experience for me. I appreciate the act of giving a self-manicure. It says that I took a minute from the business of my day to take care of myself. Its a simple act- but one that means a lot to me.
So, when my nails began peeling earlier this year, I didn't know what I had done wrong. I use gentle nailpolish remover, I avoid physically damaging my nails, a file instead of clip- and yet there they are. Peeling layers of yuckiness.
So, I went to the internet. Turns out, that dryness is a very common cause for nail breakage and peeling. Since the skin of my hands is chapped ad dry, its a pretty good bet my nails are too. Then I got to reading about cuticle oils. By moisturizing the cuticle you can keep the nail plate stronger and the nails more healthy. Just rub it on each nail for 20 seconds twice a day. Sounds easy right?
Wrong. These little buggers are EXPENSIVE! Not to mention chocked full of mysterious chemicals that do who-knows-what. So, in true Kayla form, I set out to make my own.
Turns out some of the essential oils I have around are great for nails! Eucalyptus helps to balance moisture, Grapefruit protects from irritants and Peppermint promotes blood flow. Beeswax helps to seal in the moisture you are applying. (source)
Armed with these and two other household ingredients I set to work! You can make your own and use the Free Printable!
What You Need:
There are two versions of this oil. An all oil version that will be clear and liquid, or a lotion type version that will be creamy, with wax to hold the moisture in. The recipes are pretty much the same.
- 1/4 cup Coconut oil
- 1 tsp grated Beeswax (this is for the lotion version only).
- Hand or stand mixer (Lotion version only).
- Eucalyptus Essential Oil. (I get all my oils at a local Health Food store. They range from $2-$5.)
- Grapefruit Essential Oil.
- Peppermint Essential Oil.
How To Make It:
- Begin by melting your oil. Coconut oil can turn solid in temps under 76degrees.
- If using the beeswax, add the shavings to the oil and let melt.
- Add 6 drops of each oil to the mixture.
- If using the oil only method- you're done! Simply pour your oil into a container and use twice daily. If you're like me and prefer a lotion, read on.
- Once the oils are combined, heat a metal bowl (or the metal bowl of your stand mixer) in the oven until its hot to the touch but not super hot. (This is just to allow the mixture to cool slowly rather than becoming solid all at once when it hits the cold bowl.)
- Pour the mixture into the bowl and whisk it on high for about 5 minutes, or until it is cool to the touch.
- Use a funnel to help you pour into a bottle and Done! Whipping adds air to the mixture and helps it to cool evenly, now you've got a rejuvenating cuticle oil to moisturize with, and the wax helps to seal in that moisture!
- If you'd like, feel free to use the free printable label I'm sharing. =D