By Courtney A. Leiva

Is picking your cuticles one of your worst bad habits?

Stop the abuse and get your nails in the springtime shape with the help of nail guru Deborah Lippmann of course!

Teaching us a thing or two about proper cuticle and nail health, get out those beauty cheat sheets and steal these salon-worthy tips right now!

TheBeautyBean:  Picking cuticles can be a seriously addicting habit, so when do you know that cuticles are in bad shape?

Deborah Lippmann: Cuticles are in bad shape if they are irritated, are flaky and dry, or if the skin is ragged and torn.

TBB: What are some of the most common ways that cuticles become damaged?

DL: I’m a big believer that cutting the cuticle is not the way to go. Your skin is your body’s largest organ and your cuticles are at the end of the skin-they are meant to be there to act as a barrier for bacteria. Never cut all the way around the cuticle because this will cause skin to become ragged and tear, opening the body to bacteria. Women tend to pick and nip at cuticles when stressed, so the more hydrated the cuticle the less likely they are to pick.

TBB:  To repair this problem, what steps should you take to get cuticles back into healthy shape?

DL: Weekly maintenance and hydration are key components of cuticle health. My Cuticle Remover ($20) is a convenient way to care for and maintain your cuticles each week because it’s a completely waterless system. To use, apply Cuticle Remover liberally to all nails where the skin meets the nail. Gently push cuticles back with a cuticle pusher. You must go around the cuticle area several times to get a clean cuticle.

Wipe clean with a piece of cotton. When you’re finished, any remaining lifted pieces of skin are hangnails. Carefully nip only these dead pieces of skin. Never cut all the way around the cuticle for the reasons previously mentioned. Once cuticles are groomed, apply a tiny amount of Cuticle Oil ($20) to the base of all five nails.You only need to touch the brush lightly to the base of the nail, and then massage into the cuticle. Finish by applying my Rich Girl hand cream with SPF 25 ($28,

TBB: Once fully repaired, how do you maintain cuticle health?

DL: The key to well-groomed cuticles is moisture and exfoliation. You have to remove dead skin cells on your nails just like your face. Keep fingers hydrated and push the cuticle back every week to prevent buildup. My mantra is moisturize, moisturize, moisturize, so I recommend keeping cuticle oil on your desk and by your bed, and keep hand cream at every sink in your home.

It’s important to moisturize hands every time you wash them to prevent dry, flaky nails, cuticles and skin. Think about when you wash your face, you probably wouldn’t wash your face and not hydrate thereafter. We always wonder why our hands and cuticles are dry, but it’s because we’re not treating them properly. Just think about how often you wash your hands in a given day and my guess is most rarely moisturizing after each washing.”

For more information on Deborah Lippmann or her line of products, visit her website at


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