Rivet nail: help and causes

Rivet nail / what to do with a rivet nail

In the field of cosmetics, a rivet nail (also known as a hangnail) is a small tear in the cuticle of the finger, whereby it protrudes in the form of a small, dry piece of skin. This not only looks unattractive, but can also be very uncomfortable for the person concerned, as the rivet nails can quickly cause inflammation and severe pain. Accordingly, it is important to treat the small cracks appropriately and to prevent them with effective home remedies and the right care.

Table of Contents

  • Rivet nail / what to do with a rivet nail
  • How is a rivet nail made on the finger?
  • Causes of torn cuticles
  • Remove and treat rivet nail
  • Home remedies
  • How can I prevent rivet nails on my fingers?

How is a rivet nail made on the finger?

The term “rivet nail” is usually used to describe a lateral tear in the cuticle, which is usually very painful and can quickly lead to inflammation. The cuticle refers to the skin fold that overlaps on the nail and covers the nail root (matrix), which protects it from dirt and bacteria. A rivet nail is usually caused when the cuticle sits too tightly on the nail plate when the fingernail grows out and does not come off, but instead is pulled along with it. This creates increased tension, which ultimately tears the cuticle and then sticks out in small, hardened shreds.

Riveting nails have no disease value. They’re more of a cosmetic problem. However, the affected area can become inflamed. (RioPatuca Images / fotolia)

The tiny cracks and scraps of skin aren’t just a cosmetic problem, however. Rather, there is often severe pain and inflammation, as viruses and bacteria can penetrate the body more quickly through the small “entry ports”. In addition, the unsightly spots on the fingernails often worsen because the dry scraps of skin on the side of the nail bed are constantly caught like small “barbs” in fabrics, nylon tights or hair, tearing the skin even more.

Causes of torn cuticles

In general, the risk is increased if the cuticle is very dry and therefore tears more quickly. Even those who constantly “nibble” their fingers or bite their nails due to stress or inner restlessness run the risk of small, dry areas of skin developing quickly. If these are then further plucked or gnawed, the situation often worsens and painful inflammation can occur. Another reason for a rivet nail can be the constant contact of the hands with water or cleaning agents, as this softens the cuticle more and becomes more sensitive as a result.

Remove and treat rivet nail

Simple creaming is usually not enough for treatment. Instead, it is necessary to push the cuticles back regularly to loosen them from the nail plate and thereby relieve the tension. Various aids are available for this, whereby in each case absolute caution should be exercised in order to avoid further injuries to the cuticle or the nail bed. For people who want to treat their hands for the first time, a cuticle pusher or cleaner made of rubber, which is very soft and can also be used with sensitive nails, could be useful. However, since this is usually less sharp-edged than, for example, wooden devices, it can also happen that the skin cannot be removed sufficiently. The most accurate way to work is therefore usually with a stainless steel slide,

In addition to this, the small protruding pieces of skin should also be removed for treatment in order to prevent the cracks from worsening due to constant sticking etc. However, sharp scissors should definitely be avoided here, as they increase the risk of injury on the one hand and tear the cuticle too far quickly on the other. So-called “cuticle nippers” are better suited, with the help of which the excess “barbs” can be clipped off thoroughly and without injuries. Since soft or elastic skin can be pushed back much more easily, it is also advisable to carry out the treatment directly after bathing or showering or to incorporate a nail balm or special cuticle softener. The general rule,

If an inflammation has already developed from a rivet nail, it is advisable to treat the cuticle with particular care over the next few days, whereby various home remedies can be used to help. However, if it is a purulent inflammation with swollen skin and / or pain, the general practitioner should always be consulted as a precaution.

Home remedies

There are a number of natural home remedies for a rivet nail that are plant-based and can effectively support healing. If an inflammation has developed, a tincture of marigold can be considered, for example, which is suitable for almost every skin complaint due to its anti-inflammatory and pus-inhibiting effects. The production of such a tincture is usually relatively simple and does not require any special equipment or ingredients; instead, only fresh or dried marigold blossoms, some schnapps with an alcohol content of at least 40 to 45% by volume (Doppelkorn, Vodka, etc.), a glass with screw cap, filter bags and a dark vial needed.

The flowers are first filled into the screw-top jar until it is about half full, then at least as much alcohol is poured over it that it is completely covered, but it is still possible to shake the tincture. Now the jar is closed and placed in a quiet place for two to three weeks, which must be shaken well at least once a day. After the rest period, the tincture is carefully filtered, then the flowers are removed and the liquid is poured into a dark bottle using a funnel.

In addition to calendula, tea tree oil is also suitable for treating inflamed cracks in the cuticle. However, it should be noted here that this can dry out the skin even more and lead to irritation and redness. Accordingly, especially with sensitive skin, the oil should always be used very carefully and ideally mixed with a so-called “carrier oil” (eg sunflower or sesame oil) in a ratio of 5 drops of essential oil to 10 ml of carrier oil.

How can I prevent rivet nails on my fingers?

The prevention of rivet nails is usually easier than expected, because there are a few tricks and measures that can be used to effectively prevent the formation of small cracks. It is especially important here not to pluck or chew off small protruding edges or flakes of skin. Instead, hands should always be cared for with the appropriate manicure tool or by a professional beautician to avoid injury.

If biting your fingernails is a constant problem or a problem that recurs in certain situations, bitter-tasting tinctures, creams or varnishes from the pharmacy can be used. Since chewing is triggered in most cases by inner restlessness and tension, relaxation exercises and methods to reduce stress such as autogenic training , hypnosis, progressive muscle relaxation or yoga are also very helpful in many cases .

Anyone who generally has a tendency to dry, cracked cuticles should also wear gloves when washing dishes, cleaning and doing other house and gardening work in order to protect their hands from aggressive substances or the softening of the skin due to constant contact with water. In addition, it is generally advisable to only use products that do not contain any chemicals. Instead, natural substances such as vinegar or lemon juice have proven themselves in many areas of the household by cleaning them thoroughly, but not posing any danger to the nails.

For hand washing, it is recommended to use a mild washing lotion (e.g. for babies) and then to apply a rich cream or oil (e.g. almond, jojoba oil, cocoa butter) to hands, fingers and fingernails in order to provide them with sufficient moisture. It can also be helpful here to massage the care products thoroughly into nails and cuticles right before going to bed so that the valuable ingredients can work overnight. It is practical to put on thin cotton gloves so that the cream does not smear, and the warmth promotes the effect of the care on the skin.

In cold weather, care should be taken to provide adequate protection for the hands, as this can severely dry out the skin and thus cause cracked, sensitive nails and cuticles. Accordingly, it is advisable to always wear gloves in cold temperatures in the fresh air and to regularly apply cream to your hands and fingers. In addition, it is generally advisable not to use any nail polish remover with alcohol or acetone, as these substances attack the nails and also remove moisture from them. Hands should not be washed excessively and preferably only with lukewarm water, as water and soap that are too hot can soften the surface of the skin and damage the skin’s natural protective acid mantle.

In order to keep the hands and fingers healthy and beautiful in the long term, a professional manicure performed regularly can also be very useful. Here, however, you should proceed very carefully when choosing a nail care professional so as not to experience any nasty surprises such as poor hygiene, poor advice, rough treatment, etc. during treatment.


by Abdullah Sam
I’m a teacher, researcher and writer. I write about study subjects to improve the learning of college and university students. I write top Quality study notes Mostly, Tech, Games, Education, And Solutions/Tips and Tricks. I am a person who helps students to acquire knowledge, competence or virtue.

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