A Confession

I have a confession to make: I’ve been hiding my nails from you. In every single photo I’ve posted to this blog in the past year, I have held products in such a way that my fingertips aren’t visible. I’ve used bizarre camera angles, the cropping tool, and even cloth to prevent my fingernails from being visible anywhere. I’ve even avoided writing certain types of posts because it would have required showing my fingertips.

Why would I go to such lengths to hide something not many of you would even notice, much less think twice about? Here goes: I’m not sure how it started, or why, or why it never stopped, but I bite my nails.

This is something I’ve been embarrassed about since early high school, when I realized how uncommon having nails this short was. Since then, I’ve tried to stop. I’ve tried my best, making a serious commitment to do so 2-3 times a year since then. I’ve tried going cold turkey, and trying to stop one finger at a time; I’ve tried pretty nail polish and acid-tasting nail polish; I’ve tried using greasy hand lotion and staining lipstick (if you don’t understand why I thought some of these would work, please ask! I have explanations for everything). The closest I ever came to succeeding was when I was in the Philippines for 2 weeks digging drainage ditches and building houses — most of the time, my hands were so dirty that I didn’t want to put them anywhere near my mouth. But once I was home, the nail-biting started again.

This sounds like it’s going to turn into some great inspiring success story about how beautiful my nails are now, but it’s not. At least, not yet. The problem is, it’s usually unconscious. I’ll accidentally gnaw on a nail when a book I’m reading approaches the climax, or when lost deep in my thoughts, or struggling over a particularly complex homework problem. “Avoiding stress” is not a suitable solution for a senior in college.

But now, I’m going to try harder than ever. Starting this blog last year has made me think more about how much I wish my nails were graceful-looking. I wish that I could paint them pretty colors and have people notice them, instead of putting on yet another coat of clear polish and burying my hands in my lap. I don’t have any great plan, any special scheme I’m using to accomplish this. I’m just going for it with what I hope is more motivation than I’ve ever had before.

So far, this post has been void of pictures. Can you blame me? Until my nails get to an acceptable length, I’m still going to try to hide them somewhat. But here is a photo taken a week before I started this mission.


I’m hoping to do weekly or biweekly update posts with my progress, assuming it’s something you’d be willing to read. For me accountability is a major driver, and I think that putting myself out there and sharing my story will help (even if it’s just for a few of you). In any case, thank you for bearing with me for this long, text-heavy post ❤

6 thoughts on “A Confession

  1. You’re not alone, I usually take swatch photos where my nails aren’t visible for the exact same reason. I’ve been a nail biter since I was a kid, as a nervous habit. I just never realize I’m doing it, and now if my nails get any sort of length on them, they feel so uncomfortable that I can’t stand it. :/ I wish you good luck!

  2. I used to bite my nails when I was younger, and through university I would pick at my cuticles as a nervous habit. They looked awful and they always hurt. I’m not sure what it was that made me stop but I use cuticle butter all the time and a protein formula nail polish to keep my nails strong. Now my nails can get long and not bug me. I’m obsessed with them! I paint them all the time and even when I don’t, I look at them constantly because I think they look so nice! You can do it too, you will be so glad when you get to a point that you are proud of them!

  3. Pingback: Zoya Haul, Part 1: Six Polishes | Just A Primer

  4. Pingback: My Nail Odyssey: Update #1 | Just A Primer

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