Post # 1
I have always bitten my nails, I honestly can’t remember a time when I didn’t do it. I know, it’s a disgusting habit and I’ve tried like 8 billion times over the years to stop, with no avail. Today marks exactly 1 year until our wedding, and I am determined to have nice fingernails for my wedding (and for my engagement photos later this summer).
Bees, I need your help! For any former nail biters, what helped you to stop? I feel like I’ve tried everything. I’ve tried the gross tasting nail polish. I’ve tried painting my nails. I’ve tried getting acrylic nails. At times, I’ve been able to stop for a few weeks or so, but I always end up falling back into the habit. The worst thing is that I tend to do it when I’m bored – and often times, I don’t even realize I’m doing it until I’ve already bitten a nail down.
I also tend to pick at my cuticles a lot, and currently, I’d say that’s more of a problem than the nail biting itself. It looks awful.
I’d love and appreciate any and all advice! I am so embarrassed over the nail biting and I just want to kick the habit once and for all.
Post # 2
annb9: I am a former cuticle biter and I would recommend getting some Mango Magic, its cuticle oil you can get at Sally Beauty, pretty cheap, moisturizes and conditions your nails and cuticles. I keep a bottle on my vanity, one by the couch and one in my purse, if you keep your cuticles and nails from drying out, it might help keep you from biting. I also set aside time on Sundays to sit down and gice myself a manicure and pedicure, clean everything up, trim away any creepies and polish….when you spend the time and energy yourself, you’re much less likely to start chewing at it, because you know how hard you worked to make it look nice.
Post # 3
Nona99: Thank you – I will try the product!! I definitely notice that I tend to bite/pick less when I do my nails…I need to be more diligent about keeping up with it.
Post # 4
annb9: I am exactly the same way! When I run out of nail, it’s whatever else I can pick or bite at. I don’t even notice I’m doing it! I’m not sure if it’s stress or anxiety, but I’ve done it most of my life. I am desperatly trying to stop it now and have been using nailpolish as a guard. I find that, while it doesn’t look pretty, I’m more apt to pick that off first before goin’ HAM on my nails!
Post # 5
Get a manicure every single week. It’s not the cheapest option, but you create a NEW habit to replace the bad one. Plus you’ll get the positive reinforcement of having pretty nails all the time, so it’ll encourage you to not bite. I bit my nails for years, tried everything from hot sauce to bandaids and everything in between. Getting my nails done broke the habit.
Post # 6
I’m a nail biting addict (have been biting since I was like 4 and quit on and off until I finally quit for good), and this is what has helped me.
1) In the beginning when you are trying to quit, you need to CONSCIOUSLY be aware of the goal to quit. Basically any time you look at your hands, say “DO NOT BITE” to yourself. If you don’t, before you know it, you’ll get bored and start munching away. Once you tell yourself to stop for a few weeks/months or so, you will find that you no longer reach out to bite – you have conditioned yourself OUT of that habit. It is hard in the beginning though.
2) Go on a mini-vacation. I have found with addictions, it’s a lot easier to train yourself to not do something when you take a break from your current day to day operations and then apply the new better habit to your day to day operations. This goes for spending money, nail biting, dieting (within reason – everyone indulges on vacation!), and drinking.
3) You mentioned you do it when you are bored, but do you do it when you are nervous/stressed? That’s when I did it the most, so I learned to instead of biting condition myself to relax and take deep breaths throughout the day.
4) Invest in a lot of nail polish. 🙂 I have bins and bins of nail polish. Yes, some might say it’s a waste, but not as big of a waste as being a nail biter with too awful nails for polish! 🙂
Post # 7
Once I learned that you can get pinworms from nail biting, that was enough for me to stop. Euck. I was so grossed out I didn’t even NEED to remind myself not to bite! I definitely wanted to avoid GI worms.
Post # 8
DaneLady: Omg, I just Google Imaged those and nearly threw up.
OP – DaneLady is right. GOOGLE PINWORMS AND THAT IS ALL YOU WILL NEED TO STOP BITING!
Post # 9
DaneLady: MrsNewDay: Well, that was disgusting – that’ll definitely help!
And thank you everyone for great advice. I think I’m heading to get my nails done after work today…hopefully that will inspire me to stop biting (along with the pinworms).
Post # 10
If you get gel nails, it will help. It’s hard to bite through gel. That’s what kicked my habit.
Post # 10
- Wedding: September 2014 - Dallas, TX
annb9: No advice, but I’m in the same boat as you. I bite my nails and destroy my cuticles. It’s horrible. I’m always bleeding and in pain, yet I can’t stop. I hate it, my FI hates it. I also don’t realize I’m doing it until I look down and there’s blood. It’s so frustrating! I’m going to try some of the advice you received and I hope it helps. My wedding is in 4 months and I really want to be able to have my hands in pictures!
Post # 11
I have been a nailbiter since I got teeth as a child. My nails are flimsy and peel, so I’m constantly picking them even if I’m not biting.
What works for me is to always keep them painted with an opaque paint so I can’t see how long they are (whereas transparent you can see the white parts). And keep them well manicured- once they start peeling I start picking, so I repaint. I keep a nail file with me at all times so if I get a hangnail or the urge to bite, I file them instead.
Also, I find that when they reach a certain length I stop biting them, but then they get too long and break/peel so I have to be very careful about what length to maintain them. Not too long that they break, but not too short that I say “ohh it’s just a little bit, I’ll just bite it off”.
Good luck! It’s definitely hard. I’ve been trying for years to kick the habit.
Post # 12
nailbiter since i was born until about 1 year ago.
for me if they got too long, too short, peely, if i was bored….i would chew them. i finally just wanted to sto tbat is basically how i quit. but to help i started carrying a nail file and nail clippers with me everywhere. lots of pairs so you can always file pokey parts or clip them if too long. i also decided if i quit chewing them for two months i would get myself a manicure. i wanted one enough that between that reward and the files and nail clippers.
Post # 13
You need to figure out what triggers you to bite your nails. Is it stress, anxiety, boredom, something else? Once you pinpoint the trigger, you can work on doing something else other than putting your fingers in your mouth.
What got me to stop biting my nails? When I was in high school, I noticed how pretty my friends hands looked with their beautifully manicured nails and I was jealous. Also, I hated constantly hiding my hands so people wouldn’t see my nails bitten to the quick. Wanting beautiful nails like my friends had did the trick. I have gorgeous nails now and don’t have to hide my hands anymore!
I also found that having nail polish on my nails made me not want to bite them.
Good luck to you. I have been in your shoes but found my way out and know that all nail biters can do it!
Post # 14
Buy this, put it on, and enjoy never biting your nails again:
I bit my nails for, oh, more than a quarter of a century. I tried everything: manicures, acrylics, other anti-nail biting polishes. This stuff is the only thing I’ve ever found to really work. It tastes so foul that you’ll never absent-mindedly put your hand near your mouth again. Seriously, 2000+ 5 star Amazon reviews don’t lie! 🙂