A dermatologist does these 3 things for stronger nails, including a daily supplement

  • Dr. Marisa Garshick is a New York-based dermatologist.

  • She shared what she does to achieve healthy, strong nails.

  • She uses a Vaseline lotion, takes a multivitamin supplement, and makes sure she gets enough protein.

As a dermatologist, Dr. Marisa Garshick doesn't just treat acne and rosacea; she also knows a lot about nail health.

Garshick, who is based in New York, said that while supplements can improve nail health, "one of the most important steps is not what you ingest but what you put on the nails."

She shared the three things she uses to improve her nails, from taking supplements to making sure she eats a balanced diet.

A petroleum-based lotion


Garshick uses Vaseline's Healing Jelly Ointment on her nails as well as her cuticles. She said that other petroleum-based lotions should work as well. (Vaseline also makes versions that are specifically catered to nail health.)

Garshick said that she noticed a difference in how soft and smooth her nails became once she started using it regularly, and that applying it daily can help "nourish, protect, and support the nails."

"Especially after removing nail polish, when sometimes the nails can seem dry and brittle, using the ointment regularly helps the nails recover," she said.

A daily multivitamin

New Chapter Perfect Prenatal Multivitamin

Garshick takes a multivitamin, which can have added benefits for nail health.

"Iron, zinc, and folic acid may be important for nail growth," she said. They're all "especially important to supplement if there is a known deficiency," she said. In that case, healthier nails are also a plus.

She also said that if you're just starting to take supplements for nail health, you may need to wait a little bit to see results. "Since nails take time to grow, it can take 6-12 months for full effects," she said.


A close up of someone cutting into a juicy steak
Helios8/Getty Images

"Protein intake is important to support nail strength and growth," Garshick said, "so it becomes especially important for those who don't eat meat to remember to find protein substitutes."

To get enough protein, she said she "tries to follow a well-balanced diet."

The minimum daily recommended protein intake is 46g for women and 56g for men.

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