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If the skin around your nails is peeling? know 7 causes behind it and how to treat it

Is the skin around your nails peeling off? Read on to know why it happens and how to prevent dry skin around nails.
nail peeling
Nails peeling is a problem that can rise during winter. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock
Dr Akriti Gupta Updated: 11 Jan 2024, 15:24 pm IST
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Have you been wondering why the skin around your nails is peeling? Our hands are exposed to many situations and chemicals on a daily basis. If you have dry and cracked skin around your nails, it could be due to the dry weather. But bacteria can enter through split skin and can cause a variety of illnesses in the form of rough or scraggly cuticles. It is, therefore, equally important to take care of the skin on your hands.

Furthermore, nail biting is also a contributing factor to skin around nails peeling off. Read on to know about all the causes of nail skin peeling.

7 causes of nail skin peeling

1. Environmental cause

Environmental elements have a big impact on our skin’s overall health and texture. The skin around your nails may peel due to factors such as dry weather, winters and freezing temperatures. In general, environmental variables have a big impact on how healthy and smooth our skin is. The skin around your nails may peel due to factors such as dry weather, winters, and freezing temperatures.

2. Biting your nails

Biting your nails can harm your cuticles, skin, and nails, and is a major reason behind nail skin peeling off. A skin infection could emerge from these damaged cuticles. It is one of the reasons why youngsters and anxious adults experience peeling skin.

nail peeling
Take care of your cuticles and resist the urge to pick on them. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

3. Nutritional deficiency

Vitamin or calcium deficiencies are another reason why the skin surrounding your nails peels. A lack of essential minerals merely makes the skin dry and more prone to flaking and peeling. Niacin, or vitamin B-3, deficiency causes pellagra, a condition characterized by dry skin or dermatitis, dementia, and diarrhoea.

4. Skin damage from a manicure

Salons occasionally may not know just how to take care of your skin. This skin is softer than the surrounding skin on your hands and feet, so it may be damaged by rough handling during nail care or a manicure or pedicure. Additionally, some technicians might remove the dried-out or broken portions of your eponychium. This harms the health of your nails and exposes the skin to bacteria and diseases.

Also read: Nail your nail care routine with these 5 tips for winter

5. Skin infections or disorders

Psoriasis and eczema are two medical conditions that can cause the skin to peel off your fingertips. The skin around the cuticle may peel as a result of chronic infection, such as a bacterial or fungal infection (induced by moisture). Please visit a good dermatologist for these infections rather than attempting to treat them yourself.

nail peeling
Nail peeling is common during dry weather. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

6. Excessive hand washing

Frequent hand washing with soap can damage the skin’s lipid barrier, allowing the soap to penetrate the skin’s sensitive layers and cause irritation and peeling. This can also lead to dry skin around nails.

7. Using items that contain harsh chemicals

Some of the additives used in soaps, shampoos, and other beauty products can irritate the skin and cause the skin around the fingertips to peel off. The more common demographic for finger skin peeling due to these factors includes beauticians, maids, etc.

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9 home remedies for peeling nails:

1. Don’t wash your hands too many times

People with sensitive skin should refrain from washing their hands in hot water because doing so causes double dehydration of the skin.

2. Use Aloe vera

Aloe vera is great to avoid dry skin around nails. Remove the sap from an aloe vera leaf and apply it on your palms.

3. Use fresh cream

If you notice that your hands are particularly dry, moisten them with fresh cream for 10 minutes. Rinse your hands and apply milk cream because it is a good hydrating agent and regenerates the skin. This helps prevent the skin around nails peeling off.

4. Use ghee

Run a few drops of ghee on your hands while cooking to protect your hands from damage caused by cutting acidic vegetables like onions, potatoes, and tomatoes. You can also use coconut, olive, or almond oil in place of ghee.

nail peeling
Ghee is good for your skin health! Image courtesy: Shutterstock

5. Load up on fruits

To keep your skin hydrated and supple, consume fruits. Be careful to include foods that are high in iron, vitamin B12, and biotin.

6. Don’t bite nails

This one is a no-brainer. In fact, don’t put your hands too close to your mouth to avoid nail biting.

7. Keep warm

Protect your hands from the cold by keeping them warm. Hands being very cold also results in dry skin around nails and leads to skin around nails peeling off.

Also read: Your nails can reveal a lot about your health. Here’s what they might trying to tell you

8. No nail polish removers

Acetone, or nail polish remover, a very abrasive chemical in nail polish removers, should be avoided. Your skin may become dry as a result.

9. Take great care of your skin and cuticles.

To prevent pores from opening, moisturize palms at least three times daily. Cover your hands with socks at night after moisturizing for better results. Try it for an hour if you can’t do it all night. Absorption will increase as a result. If your palms are sweaty, stay away from this as it will make you more agitated.


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About the Author

Cosmetic dermatologist Dr Akriti Gupta is with Jivisha Clinic in Delhi. She has completed her MBBS from Sri Siddhartha Medical College, Tumkur under Rajiv Gandhi University Of Health Sciences, Bengaluru. Later, she pursued her post-graduation in Dermatology, Venereology and Leprosy at PDU Medical College from Rajkot. She has done her Fellowship in Aesthetic Medicine University of Griesfeld, Germany. She has experience of 10 years, treating all kinds of skin disorders. She can provide solutions to all, be it regular skin maintenance or to simply enhance the normal skin; solutions for acne scars, dark uneven skin pigmentation, tanned skin, wrinkles and unwanted hair. ...Read More

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