Here’s How to Fix a Broken Nail and Save Your Manicure

March 16, 2020
Tembe Denton-Hurst
By: Tembe Denton-Hurst | by L'Oréal

Breaking a nail sucks. Not only has your perfectly filed and polished manicure taken a serious hit aesthetically speaking, but chipping a nail down to the nail bed can be majorly painful (like, ouch). While you may have thought that all hope was lost and your shiny mani was doomed for good, we’re happy to report that you can, in fact, bring your broken nail back to life. How? Read ahead, because we’re sharing tips for fixing your broken nail, STAT, and advice on how to prevent it from happening again in the future. 

How to Fix a Broken Nail 

Whether you have a minor chip or a straight-down-the-center break, mending your broken nail is actually pretty easy to do at home. 

Broken Nail Tip #1: Use a Coffee Filter 

It may seem unconventional, but trust us, this DIY repair works like a charm. Just cut off a small piece of a tea bag or coffee filter paper that’s a smidge larger than the damaged part of the nail. Apply a small dot of nail glue and stick the paper down. Once the glue has dried, apply a top coat, like the Essie Speed Setter Top Coat, or polish to the area and voila, good as new.  

Essie Speed Setter Top Coat

Broken Nail Tip #2: Cut It Down 

If your chip seems like it's beyond repair, your best bet is probably filing or cutting the nail down so it’s even (or as even as it can be) across the top. While it may look a little stubby, you can always get a full-coverage tip glued onto the top of your nail until the damage grows out. 

Broken Nail Tip #3: Use Nail Powder 

In a pinch and need a quick solution? Grab a nail powder, like the IBD 5 Second Nail Filler Powder, for a last-minute mend. Just apply a thin layer of glue over your nail and dip the damaged nail into the powder. Let it dry, buff the surface and apply a top coat. The powder will help your nail look and feel strong until it can grow out. 

Broken Nail Tip #4: Be Gentle With Your Nails

While we’ve listed a handful of tips and tricks for fixing a nail that’s already broken, it’s better (and easier) to prevent a break from happening in the first place. The key? Keeping your nails healthy. Make sure you’re not placing extra stress on them by doing things like typing with your nails rather than your finger bedsor are overdoing it with gel polish. 


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