Lots of things can contribute to dry, brittle, and breaking nails. Maybe they're chipping and peeling from all that hand washing and sanitizing, or perhaps you've picked off your gel manicure more times than you can count. Or maybe, nail-biting has simply gotten the best of you lately. Whatever the reason, a great nail strengthener could be all you need to get your tips back into perfect shape. They're packed with essential vitamins, proteins, and other ingredients that work hard to make nails grow stronger and longer, and the benefits don't end there. Many of them layer well underneath regular polish, so you can swipe on a coat and still keep your color of choice on top.
With that in mind, we've rounded up a list of the absolute best nail strengtheners out there right now. Whether you were born with not-so-great nails or you’ve got damage from one too many acrylic manicures, one of the top-rated formulas below will give your digits some much-needed rehab.
How We Found The Best Nail Strengtheners
Here at Rank & Style, we're all about getting things right the first time. Our mission is to make your shopping experience as simple as possible, because as much as we love a great return policy, we don't think you should have to use it. To do this, we use an unbiased algorithm that finds the best products out there by factoring in best-selling buzz, editor recommendations, rave reviews, and more. Ahead, shop the 10 nail strengtheners that made the cut and add one to your routine.
Next up, check out the 10 Best Cuticle Oils And Creams. Opening image: @nailsinc
February 24, 2022
Top 10 Lists serve as unbiased shopping guides to the most trusted product recommendations on the internet. Products are scored and ranked using an algorithm backed by data consumers find most valuable when making a purchase. We are reader-supported and may earn a commission when you shop through our links.
Ella+Mila First Aid Kiss Nail Strengthener
WHAT IT DOES: Powered by vitamin E, this clean formula hardens, strengthens, and lengthens nails in just a quick, four-week period. Wear it for one week, remove it with a non-acetone polish remover, then reapply for a second week. For the third and fourth weeks, repeat this process every other day.
USER REVIEW: “This is truly a game-changer. I was amazed at how quickly my nails grew in just three to four weeks. My little fingernails always had a slight inward turn to them as they grew, but now they are normal nails!"
Deborah Lippmann Hard Rock Nail Strengthening Top And Base Coat
WHY IT MADE THE LIST: This hardworking formula functions as a daily treatment, a base coat, and a top coat in one. It's also ultra-gentle, so you can apply it every day worry-free.
WHY PEOPLE LOVE IT: Reviewers rave about this nail strengthener's ability to extend the life of at-home manicures.
Nails Inc. Nailkale Superfood Base Coat
WHAT IT DOES: This five-benefit base coat is infused with kale extract to stimulate nail growth, hydration, anti-breakage and anti-splitting protection, and deep nourishment—all while leaving your nails with a gorgeous, high-gloss finish.
USER REVIEW: "This stuff is amazing! My nails were super thin and damaged after getting a horrible dip powder manicure. After a little over a week later, my nails are already feeling stronger and looking much healthier, and they don't feel sore anymore."
DermaNail Nail Conditioner
WHY IT MADE THE LIST: Developed by a leading dermatology research team, this nail conditioner is the real deal. The unique, patented technology binds cells together to create strong and stable nails, controlling splitting, peeling, cracking, chipping, and breaking and encouraging longer growth in the process.
WHO IT'S FOR: This is an excellent choice for those struggling with cosmetic nail problems caused by trauma or injury, such as onychomycosis and psoriasis.
Olive & June Nail Strengthener
WHY PEOPLE LOVE IT: Pretty bottle aside, shoppers love this nail strengthener for its lasting power. Unlike many formulas, you only need to use this one once a week to see results.
ADDITIONAL THINGS TO KNOW: This nails strengthener contains celery seed extract, an antioxidant known to improve nail thickness, along with rosemary and lavender to provide a dose of hydration.
Nail Tek Foundation Strengthening Base Coat
WHY IT MADE THE LIST: Designed to function as a base coat and nail strengthener, adding this to your manicure routine is a no-brainer. But that's not the only reason the formula stands out—it's also made with a unique blend of strengtheners, conditioners, and micro-fibers that fill in ridges both instantly and in the long run.
ADDITIONAL THINGS TO KNOW: This formula is the strongest of Nail Tek's strengthening line, so it's ideal for those who have tried everything.
Sally Hansen Mega Strength Top Coat
WHY IT MADE THE LIST: The secret to this impressive drugstore option is platinum powder—it gives the formula an extra hardening kick. Plus, the flexible brush makes it super easy to apply, even if you have shaky hands. Oh, and did we mention it rings up under $10?
ADDITIONAL THINGS TO KNOW: This one comes in way more colors besides clear—we're talking 30 plus.
Onyx Professional Hard As Hoof Nail Strengthening Cream
WHY IT MADE THE LIST: This do-it-all product functions as a moisturizer, nail strengthener, and cuticle conditioner all in one. You've really got no excuse for not adding this streamlined formula to your daily routine.
ADDITIONAL THINGS TO KNOW: This is Amazon's #1 best-seller for nail strengtheners.
Essie Strong Start Nail Treatment
WHAT IT DOES: Infused with biotin, this strength-boosting formula reinforces and hardens the nails to make them resistant to peeling, chipping, and breakage.
HELPFUL TIP: Apply two coats for a classic clear manicure, or apply one coat as a base before your color.
OPI Nail Envy Nail Strengthener
WHO IT'S FOR: Going heavy on the at-home manis lately? Us too. Whether you tried your hand at acrylics, gel, or dip powder, this best-selling strengthener will get your brittle nails back into tip-top shape in two weeks or less.
USER REVIEW: "If you've never been able to grow out your nails because they peel and break, this is the product for you. It's easy to apply and delivers everything it promises. Pretty soon, you'll be filing down your nails because they're too long!"
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