Can menopause affect your nails?

Eileen Durward
Ask Eileen

13 December 2021

Today's topic

Today on A.Vogel Talks Menopause, I answer the question, "Can menopause affect your nails?"

Menopause can affect our hair in so many different ways, but many women also ask me, "Can the same thing happen with my nails?" They find that their nails are changing in some way or another and wonder whether this is due to menopause.

The answer is yes and today, I take a look at what some of the changes are, why they happen, and what you can do to help yourself.

Nail changes or problems that can occur during menopause

The main problem that tends to occur is that your nails can start to get dry. They can get brittle, split, or chip. You might find that you start to get ridges that are perpendicular going up your nails.

It could be dry, cracked cuticles that start to get a bit snaggy or you might have to trim them a bit more often. They might start to get that little bit bigger as well.

You may find that your nails get really flimsy. So, if you try to grow them, they can bend instead of being nice and firm. You may find too, that it takes a lot longer for your nails to grow compared with what they did before menopause.

What causes these nail changes or problems during menopause?

A lot of it is to do with hormonal flux, especially if your oestrogen starts to dip. This can affect the hydration of the nails and it can also slow down the keratin production of the nails. That's why it can take a lot longer for your nails to grow compared with before menopause.

The other thing that happens here is if you imagine all the physical changes that are going on in menopause, your nutritional needs can go sky-high, and your body will use the nutrition you give it for the most important things first - that's things like keeping your bones strong, keeping your organs healthy and keeping you alive.

If you're not getting enough nutrition, then the body thinks good nails, good hair, and good skin are not necessary for life so these are the areas that will be affected first of all if your nutrition tends not to be particularly good. If you're having problems with your skin, hair, and nails, that's a really good indication that your body is telling you that maybe you need to look at your diet and see if there's any way that you can improve it slightly.

What can help your nails during menopause?

There are a few simple things you can do to help protect your nails during menopause. Here are a few things I recommend:

Stay hydrated

Remember that as oestrogen starts to fall during menopause it can affect your body's ability to stay hydrated, so staying hydrated is very important. Nails will be way down the list of priorities, so remember to drink plenty of water on a daily basis.

Eat plenty of protein

You need to have plenty of protein for good nails so check that you're getting good quality protein at every meal. For those of you who are vegetarian or vegan, maybe go with a plant-based protein powder.

For those of you that are not keen on adding extra meat, fish, or dairy products into your diet, then plant-based protein powders are absolutely great. You have a drink every day and it gives you a huge range of vitamins, minerals, and nutrients that your body needs.

So many women have told me that they've just added this into their daily diet and it's made a huge difference in all sorts of different areas. Your local health food store will have really good, healthy ones that are not full of sugar. It's really important to make sure that you're not taking protein powders that are full of sugar, artificial sweeteners, or other nasty things as well.

Get enough calcium

You may find a calcium supplement really helpful. Again, calcium is very important for nail growth and to keep your nails nice and strong. If your nails are getting really bendy as they grow, then you may find that a calcium supplement can be very, very helpful.

Check your diet too. Fresh fruits, vegetables, pulses, and grains are often quite high in calcium so you can get a really nice portion of calcium on a daily basis just from food, rather than taking supplements all the time.

Moisturise hands and nails

If you're wanting something to moisture your nails, we have our Comfrey cream. Comfrey is a strengthening herb. The common, old-fashioned name for it was knitbone because it was used hundreds of years ago to help with fractures. I use it every night on my nails to moisturise them before I go to bed and I find that that really helps.

A.Vogel Comfrey Cream Day & Night cream

  • NOURISHING: A rich and nourishing cream for tired, dry and ageing skin.
  • DAY AND NIGHT CREAM: Use at night to help fight the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, and throughout the day for additional support to banish dull, toneless skin.
  • REDUCES APPEARANCE OF AGEING: Naturally brightens tired, dry and ageing skin, reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, as well as hydrating the skin for a skin plumping and smoothing effect.

"I use comfrey cream as a daily facial moisturiser, skin feels soft all day. It's not greasy, very light, and you only need a very small amount. Great product."

Read more customer reviews

Be careful of some nail beauty products

Be really careful if you're using nail varnish which contains harsh chemicals on a regular basis. Also, some nail varnish removers contain something called acetone, which is basically an acid that's burning off the nail varnish. That can then damage your nails, making them even weaker.

You can get nail varnish removers now without the acetone. You can get organic ones and natural nail varnishes from your local health store. You can still have really nice nails but you're just helping them by going that little bit more natural.

I very rarely wear nail varnish. I do love it, but I just find the whole process of taking it off and using all these things regularly just a bit of a bother. I save my nail varnish for a special occasion and just occasionally, you might see that I'm wearing it on one of the videos if I just feel like a little bit of a change.

Try a nail formula

The other thing you can go for is what's called a nail formula. Again, you can get these at health food shops. They contain very specific nutrients that are known to help to improve nail health.

One last thing...

Just remember though, especially if your nail growth is slowing down, it can take an awful long time for a nail to grow. If you start to implement some of these changes, you're not going to see the difference overnight - it could be a good three to six months before you start to notice the changes happening, so you do need to be patient. It can certainly be worth it though, just to put that little bit of extra effort in.

I hope you enjoyed this one. If any of you out there have any tips that you found helped with your nail health, then please share them with us.

Until next week, take care

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Comfrey Cream – Skin Hydrator


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Naturally hydrates & brightens tired, dry, ageing skin. Made from fresh herbs.
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