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How do I protect my nails against the cold? Add to ...

In the winter, my nails get very brittle and break with the slightest bump. Is there anything I can do to make them less fragile in the cold?

You might not think it, but one of the best ways to protect your nails during the winter is to wear polish. A base coat made for brittle nails, followed by two coats of a polish and a top coat, act as armour and help to prevent chipping and breaking.

As much as protection on the outside is necessary, however, you'll also want to keep your nails healthy by applying cuticle oil or cream daily. One with lactic acid will help to keep overgrown cuticles at bay so you won't need to cut them, which is a big no-no.

If you are looking for a more natural remedy, try a 10-minute soak in olive oil after every polish removal. Moisturizing the cuticles will not only help make brittle nails more resilient but will also encourage healthy growth. Your last line of defense is to wear gloves whenever you are outside. It might be a pain to pop them on and off, but it will pay off in the long run.

Bahar Niranwalla is a celebrity makeup artist. Have a beauty question? E-mail style@globeandmail.com.

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