Is this the best cuticle remover around?

Will Ciaté Beautiful Cuticles make my ugly cuticles beautiful?

It’s not often that you see a nail-care post from me, because I have the worst nails – or the worst cuticles, rather –  ever. No, seriously: imagine the worst cuticles you’ve ever seen. Now imagine cuticles that are even WORSE than that. THAT’S my cuticles – and that’s why I’ve spent the last few years of my life fruitlessly searching for the best cuticle remover EVER.

They’re long. They’re dry. They’re ragged. They’ve basically reached the stage now where they don’t even resemble cuticles – they’re just weird, white ridges at the base of my nails. I’m so self-conscious about them that I’ve taken to curling my fingers into my hands anytime I’m out in public, in an attempt to try and hide them (I probably look like I’m spoiling for a fight all the time, now I come to think of it…), and I must have spent a small fortune on products which promise to make my hands look human again. So far, nothing has worked. I’ve tried Sally Hansen, CND, Butter London, Burt’s Bees… I had some initial success with some of those products, but after a while it’s like my cuticles get used to them or something, and revert back to their usual state.

The sensible thing would be to accept that I was cursed with terrible cuticles, move on, and stop spending money on the latest “miracle cure”, but “sensible” isn’t really part of my DNA, so, instead, I went out and bought MOAR products: namely,  Ciaté Beautiful Cuticles.

Is this the best cuticle remover around?

(Disclosure: these are not my hands. I mean, OBVIOUSLY.)

So! Did ‘Beautiful Cuticles’ live up to its name? Did it make my ugly cuticles beautiful?

Er, no. Not really. But I honestly didn’t expect it to, because it’s a cuticle remover, not a cuticle miracle worker.

A cuticle remover was exactly what I was looking for, however, because, aside from the extreme dryness, my main issue with my cuticles is the sheer length of them. Seriously, if I left those things to their own devices, they’d be the same length as my nails within a couple of weeks. They’d probably take over the world, actually. Hey, I wonder if that’s their plan?

Simply pushing them back doesn’t do a whole lot of good, because they’re so long that I just end up with the aforementioned white “ridge” at the base of my nail: attractive! I moisturise them religiously (I keep some cuticle oil/hand cream on my desk at all times for this very purpose), but it doesn’t seem to make a blind bit of difference either, so… I have no idea why I do that, actually.

Anyway! This product is, as I said, a cuticle remover, and, as with pretty much every other cuticle remover I’ve used, you simply brush it onto your cuticles, leave it for a couple of minutes, then gently push the cuticle back with an orange stick. Et voilà! Beautiful cuticles! Or… not.

I’ve used this a couple of times now, and while it does get rid of the cuticle to some extent, it doesn’t happen without a bit of scraping on your part: i.e. it’s not like the cuticle just gently dissolves into thin air, leaving you with perfect hands (Not, I hasten to add, that I’d expect it to…). It’s not bad, basically, but I probably wouldn’t pay £11 for it again, because it’s not any better than the other cuticle removers I’ve tried, some of which have been less expensive. It’s easy to use, however, and if you have normal cuticles, as opposed to mutant ones, you might find you have a bit more success with it.

So, hit me with it, folks: I don’t normally ask for advice on t’internets, but if there’s anyone out there who also suffers from Cuticles from Hell, and who’s found themselves in possession of the best cuticle remover around, please tell me what it is!

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COMMENTS
  • I REALLY want to see your cuticles now! And that bottle of nail polish is too cute! I’m the biggest sucker for cute packaging as well!

    November 12, 2014
  • Annabelle

    REPLY

    Hello Amber,

    I really hope you’ll get some nice piece of advice from other readers because I also am cursed with Cuticles from Hell. I only get rid of them when I go to a professional. But you can’t do this really often in a year. So please every one, if you know one cuticle angel product: please comment about it! Let’s share.
    And to let everybody laugh a little, I tried some the advices you gave recently about lashes (mine are dark blond) with one interesting result. Now I can heat my lash curler easily with the hairdryer. Thank you so much.
    But on the first try, after I got almost burnt due to my being clumsy, I pinched my lashes so hard with the curler that my lashes made a right angle… Er, I looked quite silly!!!!
    And as I was in rush, to get out of my place I almost had to go to diner with friends with that strange clowny face. Non non non!!!!
    In fact, my husband had to accept we get late… I couldn’t possibly present such a face… But now, I handle this little trick and start my make up doing this, just in case I need to wet my eyes to get rid of an awkward twist…
    Thank you Amber for sharing! And good luck with the quest of nail-grail!

    November 12, 2014
  • I have the same problem with my cuticles. I have great nails but my cuticles are dry and even drier in the winter. Do you think it’s because I’m a natural redhead like you? I know I have a tendency for dry skin. I need help also!

    Oh, and my eyelashes are strawberry blond. I did have them dyed once 30 years ago. I should try your do-it-yourself technique and dye them myself.

    Claudia

    November 12, 2014
  • Irene

    REPLY

    I also suffer from horrible, dry cuticles 🙁 in fact it sort of keeps me from wearing nail polish often as I don’t wanna bring more attention to them. I’m trying to take better care of my nails, and I find that pushing the cuticles back everyday after I shower helps somehow, and also trimming them weekly with a cuticle nipper (I’m terribly clumsy though, and I’ve got to be careful and do it slowly or I’ll pinch the skin and get cut!). Right before trimming them I use Sally Hansen Instant Cuticle Remover (15 seconds and push back the cuticle, wash with water and soap), it helps loosen and soften them a lot so they’re easier to trim, and gets rid of the fine cuticle layers that grow on the sides of my nails. I also have fairly dry hands, especially during winter, and the only hand cream that truly heals my hands and moisturizes my cuticles is Neutrogena Norwegian Formula (not the fast absorbing, but the normal one). I tried using Burt’s Bees Lemon Butter Cuticle Cream after reading glowing reviews on the net, but it did nothing for me!

    November 13, 2014
  • mysteries1984

    REPLY

    I’ve had good luck with the Burt’s Bees stuff in the past, but what worked best was CND’s Solar Oil. Having snooped at the ingredients, I’m pretty sure it’s something anyone could whip up at home (mostly sweet almond oil, if I recall correctly). essence studio nails moisturizing cuticle cream is also a recent favourite, and it’s so cheap – it was less than €4 and I adore it.

    To be honest, what’s worked best for me was using cream/oil/whatever regularly. I do it at my desk in work, before I go to bed, while reading, watching television, anything at all. As long as I do it once every few days – more often when the weather gets colder – then they almost maintain themselves.

    November 13, 2014
      • mysteries1984

        REPLY

        I love the smell of it too, marzipan! Like childhood. essence is sold at a few/possibly all Wilko stores in the UK I believe. It’s really cheap and I’d recommend picking it up if you happen across a stand, of which there are some around Scotland*. essence is incredibly cheap (I think the most expensive item I’ve seen here in Dublin was around €6/7 and mostly aimed at a teenage sort of market but the quality is so impressive for the price, especially their lipsticks and nail varnishes.

        I was reading the other comments just now and for the record, I do trim my cuticles. But I’m very careful about it!

        *I know, Scotland is big. But you might live pretty near one anyway.

        November 14, 2014
  • Stacey

    REPLY

    I really don’t have any tips for cuticle care – mostly because if I’m being honest I really don’t do anything to mine and am not 100% sure what to do with mine. I think mine fall into the Cuticles from Hell category. But after spending my teen years reading different horror stories in magazines about how someone had clipped their cuticles and got an infection that made them lose all their fingers and then spread to their brain and now they’re lucky to be alive even though they can only communicate through a series of blinks – all because of a manicure!!! I’m kind of terrified to mess with mine. (These stories are also why I can’t go to a professional to get my nails done. I did once and they brought out an orange stick, and all that was going through my head was “that’s how that one girl got an infection. Orange stick of DEATH!!! Seventeen/All You/various other teeny-bopper magazines really helped screw me up.)

    November 14, 2014
  • Ah, cuticles! While I am not an official nail expert, by any means, and have no beauty training whatsoever, I do have lots of experience here because I, too, have naturally dry and raggedy cuticles. Want to know a secret? About half the population do! There is an answer … of sorts. You need to do a proper mani once a week. I use some sort of cuticle remover for the recommended time just prior to this (currently I like the Sally Hansen one) You need to soak fingers in warm water (not too hot!) for at least five minutes with some hand wash or similar and then really gently ease back those excess cuticles with a rubber ended hoof stick before you even think about nipping any cuticles ( if you don’t, you’ll just end up with trimming them too much, after which they will not only be sore, but tighter too and you’re back to square one, Be careful when pushing back – you know the nail grows from near this area, and you don’t want to do damage that will take months to mend. It’s worth making sure your tools are very clean ( you can buy solutions for this ) Only nip EXCESS cuticle. And use good quality, professional and very sharp nippers. Be careful. And go slowly. Better that you do it well and it takes a couple of goes, than you hack away. Don’t try to cure it all at once. Be patient. Now they are getting neater, it’s moisturisation that is really your friend. Use lots of good quality cuticle oil (my faves include OPI Avoplex – which you can use as a liquid or an oily gel which is safer for travel and keeping handbags oil-free! But good old argan oil works very well too). I oil my cuticles at least four times a day. That once at night thing might work for the lucky ones, but not those of us with ultra dry cuticles. I use hand cream every time I use the oil, and inbetween if my hands feel dry. Unfortunately, there is no quick fix, you have to work at it, and keep working at it. If you, or at least I, slip from this routine, back come the crunchy cuticles. It’s an ongoing thing. Yes, it’s a pain, but it’s worth it! Of course, you could pay someone to do the manicure bit and then you’d only have to do the maintenance bit.

    November 14, 2014
  • Nicola Rippon

    REPLY

    It must be! I wonder, then, if you reacting to the products and that the dryness is some sort of sensitivity? It might be worth paring down the treatments – just concentrating on a simple and pure hand cream with gentle ingredients (L’Occitane Shea Butter handcream is pricey but pure and very effective and a simple cuticle oil with few added ingredients like a pure almond oil). It’s also worth considering what else you subject your hands to – what other products you are using both in terms of products you choose to use and what household products you might be using. It could be an allergic dermatitis type reaction say, to a cleaning product or similar.

    November 14, 2014
  • Rebecca

    REPLY

    The Sally Hansen cuticle remover (the blue gel one) is one of the best. But here’s the trick – you need to leave it on for much longer than it says on the bottle. Try 10 minutes. Don’t worry – it doesn’t do any harm. Then your cuticles should be a little bit softer. Use this maybe once a week.

    Next comes the miracle worker. Sounds weird, but try Flexitol Heel Balm. This is heavy duty stuff designed to soften, exfoliate and heal crusty, cracked feet. Use it every night for a week or two (using those little cotton gloves overnight would be a good idea) and your cuticles should be much improved. I use these products myself, so I can recommend them!

    I used to be a Beauty Therapist so I know that some people have more trouble with their nails and cuticles than others. Perseverance and patience is the name of the game. Even someone with good natural nails still needs very regular maintenance to keep them looking good. Have a go at this routine and see how you get on. Good luck!

    November 15, 2014
  • Barbara

    REPLY

    I’m not familiar with Flexitol Heel Balm, but I’m wondering whether it has a high lanolin content? Because pure lanolin is what helps me the most. I buy it at a local health foods store. The downsides are that does have a slightly sheepy scent, and it’s quite sticky so it takes awhile to massage in, but it has really helped my dry, horny cuticles. Lotil lotions and creams are a more portable and socially-acceptable alternative, but even Lotil doesn’t work as well as the pure stuff for me. I tell myself the scent fades quickly and so far, no one has asked me, “What’s that smell?” LOL.

    June 16, 2015
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