5 Tips to Stop Biting your Nails

by Gio

If you bite your nails, you’re not alone. Nail biting is a common habit and, unfortunately, one that’s very hard to break. I’m guilty of it too. Throughout my childhood and high school years I would bite and chew my fingernails until they were all gnawed and bleeding. Ouch!

I was tired of looking at my ugly nails, feeling the pain when I’d bit too much and not being able to wear nail polish. I knew I had to stop but it wasn’t easy. Up to this day, I still bite my nails (well, just one of them actually, the others are all pretty and long) when I’m nervous and stressed.

But by following the tips below, I almost completely killed this bad habit and hopefully soon, I will leave that one finger alone too for good. Here’s how I did it:

1. Apply something nasty-tasting on your nails

When I became serious about stop biting my nails, I went out and bought one of those disgusting-tasting nail polishes. I was doubtful but they worked wonders! Everytime I tried to chew my fingers, I would get such a bad taste in my mouth, that pretty soon my desire to bite my nails disappeared forever. In alternative, you can use ricin oil or soap. It will work just as well and put you off biting your nails for a long while.

2. Replace a bad habit with a good one

Some people bite their nails when they are bored and have nothing to do or they simply like to have their hands occupied. If this is the case, don’t bite your nails but do something else instead, like playing games on your mobile or knitting. Anything you like that will keep your hands busy will do.

3. Apply nail polish to your fingernails

If your nails have grown a bit, you can apply nail polish on them. The brighter the polish, the better. If your nails look nice you wouldn’t wanna ruin them and besides, nail polish doesn’t taste good. And who would want to eat it anyway?

4. Apply fake nails

To stop biting your nails and make them look pretty while you’re waiting for them to grow out again, you can get fake or acrylic nails. They are hard so you can’t bite them and they don’t taste good either.

5. Wear gloves

I consider this to be an emergency solution for when my nails are too short and gnawed to wear nail polish and I don’t have anything disgusting at hand to apply on them. Although gloves are uncomfortable and can make it hard to do even the simplest things, once your nails are covered and you can’t see them, you won’t be tempted to chew them.

Have you got any more tips to stop biting nails? Share them in the comments!


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All Women Stalker January 15, 2010 - 3:03 pm

I had this nasty habit when I was five. I have forgotten how I got over it but I think it involved my dad cutting my nails really short. A bit of scolding, too. Hahaha

Connie January 15, 2010 - 6:11 pm

I’m a nail biter because I can’t stand a broken nail and I can never find my nail clipper! Nail polish is my way of curbing the habit. Great tips! I should keep #2 in mind
.-= Connie´s last blog ..Review: Shu Uemura UV Under Base Mousse SPF17 PA++ =-.

Dao January 15, 2010 - 6:38 pm

Naomi Campbell was also a nail biter and she applied hot sauce to her nails. It’s a tad extreme but I guess it works for her.
.-= Dao´s last blog ..Come Exercise with Me: 30 Day Shred =-.

Liefde March 23, 2012 - 3:55 am

i would do this but i fear i go rubbing my eyes or somewhere else where it will burn real bad!!! but i have a big prob and been searching for help to stop biting them off or cutting

beautifulwithbrains March 23, 2012 - 8:35 pm

Liefde, I think one of those horrible tasting polishes would be the best solution. Worked really well for me. You couldn’t rub your eyes though but you shouldn’t do that anyway. It’s not good for you.

beautifulwithbrains January 15, 2010 - 7:08 pm

All Women Stalker, awww bless your dad, lol. I’m glad you don’t have this nasty habit anymore.

beautifulwithbrains January 15, 2010 - 7:14 pm

Connie, I do that too. If I break a nail and I don’t have a nail clipper around, then I’ll surely bite it. And then I apply something that tastes disgusting on it to avoid temptation of biting it again lol. I’m glad you enjoyed the tips and hope they’ll help you 🙂

beautifulwithbrains January 15, 2010 - 7:22 pm

Dao, that is extreme! But I guess it’d work well esp if you don’t like it.

Dee January 15, 2010 - 7:25 pm

I don’t have a habit of biting my nails, but sometimes I do find myself biting here and there. Which is why I always cut them once they grow and maintain the short nails, lol.
.-= Dee´s last blog ..why….oh why? =-.

beautifulwithbrains January 15, 2010 - 7:34 pm

Dee, I find I’m more tempted to bite them when they’re short lol. But I’m glad you don’t have this habit, it’s really horrible.

Tavia January 16, 2010 - 12:56 am

Nasty habit! I’m happy that I don’t have it and I don’t even know if that would have been possible with my mother being a manicuriste: )
.-= Tavia´s last blog ..Get the New Dolce and Gabbana Makeup for Spring 2010 with The Intimate Sensuality Collection =-.

fabulessbeauty January 16, 2010 - 3:19 am

#3 applies to me =)
.-= fabulessbeauty´s last blog ..Fabuless Beauty will be blogging LIVE at the Golden Globes! =-.

Citrine January 16, 2010 - 10:43 am

I didn’t have a habit of nail biting but when I was in pre-kindergarten, I a saw a little poster of how kids should keep their nail short. From then on, I always cut them short enough that I don’t stop cutting until after it hurts…

Anyway, I heard that arcrylics nail helps since it tastes so nasty…

beautifulwithbrains January 16, 2010 - 8:57 pm

Tavia, I’m glad you don’t have it either. Oh your mum does a lovely job and you must always have gorgeous hands then, lucky you!

beautifulwithbrains January 16, 2010 - 8:57 pm

Fabulessbeauty, I’m glad that works for you 🙂

beautifulwithbrains January 16, 2010 - 9:34 pm

Citrine, ouch! That must be so painful!

yep, acrylic nails taste horribly and I doubt anyone would want to eat them anyway.

Mylanqolia January 17, 2010 - 3:49 am

That’s exactly my story, hon! I also have massive probs with nail biting, especially in stressful situations. I try to negotiate it by sucking flavoured sugar free drops. It works fine, to be honest, but sometimes the adddiction is stronger and I relapse. *shame shame shame* I’m just wondering if meditation exercises have long-term effects in this particular case… Ooooommm. 😉

beautifulwithbrains January 17, 2010 - 9:24 pm

Mylanqolia, I feel you! Quitting was so hard and when I’m stressed and nervous it’s almost impossible for me to resist! That’s why I also keep disgusting-tasting nail polishes or gloves at hand, so that if I’m tempted I don’t give in. But if I’m really really stressed or not at home, I relapse too at times. I’ve never tried meditation, but who knows, maybe it’ll work? Everything is worth a try lol 🙂

andy February 5, 2010 - 9:35 am

I bite my nails too and I hate looking at my ugly nails!..I’m really guilty of biting it..I started biting it when I was grade 3 and now I’m grade 4 ..thanks for the advice:))

beautifulwithbrains February 5, 2010 - 3:59 pm

Andy, I feel your pain. It’s a very hard habit to kick once you develop it. I hope these tips can help you like they helped me 🙂

hopeless November 2, 2010 - 6:51 pm


I’ve been biting my nails since I can remember. One year I was getting pretty good at not biting but then out of nowhere I developed an even worse habit and bite the inside of my mouth. Now I have two nasty habits. For me it is a cumpulsion – I put that nasty tasting stuff on my nails and I bite anyway. I put nail polish on and I pick or bite it off. I can never keep fake nails on long enough to have my nails grow at all.
HELP!!! Has anyone tried hypnosis?

beautifulwithbrains November 2, 2010 - 7:44 pm

Hopeless, that’s too bad. I’m sorry to hear nothing works for you, how frustrating! How did you almost manage to break this nasty habit the first habit? Maybe you can try that again. I have never tried hypnosis so I don’t know how well it works but it seems to be that your problem is psychological so you need to find out what it is that makes you bite your nails to be able to stop. I’m sorry I couldn’t be of more help, maybe someone else will have a better suggestion.

Ellena June 6, 2011 - 6:54 pm

Hi beautifulwithbrains. I’m nine years old and I’m from England and I’m called Ellena why dous it say where you post a comment 2 November 2010?? Because it’s quarter past eight in England and it’s 2011?? But can you send me emails to give me tips my emial is——–>>> [email protected] plz reply,, and by the way I’ll just give you some tips bout me,, I can’t download hypnosis because it costs £12 and I don’t have a credit card, obisloy because I’m nine years old and I used to bite my skin of my fums and fingers when I get nervous but that’s stoped now, but still it’s my nails…. What do I do???

beautifulwithbrains June 6, 2011 - 8:05 pm

Ellena, what do you mean that it says 2 November 2010? Can you be more specific? It says June 6, at least that’s what I see on my computer? And I’ve replied to your other question in the comment below. 🙂

Ellena June 6, 2011 - 6:48 pm

Hi my names Ellena and, I’m nine years old This habit has been going on for YEARS!
I keep biting my nails and it’s sooo frustrating!!!!!!!!! HELP! I need tips to stop.. I’ve bit all of my nails AGAIN today at school I’m soooo angry with myself!

beautifulwithbrains June 6, 2011 - 8:01 pm

Ellena hi. Biting your nail is such a frustrating and bad habit, isn’t it? I used to bit my nails at school when it was younger, it was useful. I would suggest to apply something that tastes disgusting on them. Do you have a bad-tasting nail polish? If not, go buy one, they helped me a lot when I decided to stop biting my nails. You can also apply ricin oil or nail polish on them. That should prevent you from biting them.

Ellena June 6, 2011 - 7:00 pm

I just bit my nail DAM!

beautifulwithbrains June 6, 2011 - 8:07 pm

Ellena, oh no!


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