A split toenail can be painful and can take a long time to heal if not treated properly. But with a little maintenance and a few tools, you can put a patch over the split that will protect it from further injury as it grows out.
Clean the toenail with a cotton ball doused in rubbing alcohol. This will remove any oily residue and ensure the nail is dry.
Apply UV gel with a brush or applicator head. Be sure to spread the gel evenly over the entire toenail, but avoid putting it on the cuticle. Allow it to cure according to package directions.
Cut fiber paper to the shape of your toenail and place it over the gel-covered nail. Smooth out any wrinkles or bubbles by placing a piece of cellophane over the top and smoothing it with your fingers. Allow the gel to dry.
Apply another thin layer of gel to the toenail and allow it to dry. Buff with a nail buffer and groom as usual. You can apply nail polish on top of the patch if desired.
Trim the nail regularly to keep it from splitting again. This is particularly important on toenails, which can snag easily in socks or shoes and often receive impact if you stub your toe. The nail patch will grow out with the rest of your nail.
Prevent splits by keeping your toenails conditioned, short and smooth.
Shara JJ Cooper graduated with a bachelor's degree in journalism in 2000, and has worked professionally ever since. She has a passion for community journalism, but likes to mix it up by writing for a variety of publications. Cooper is the owner/editor of the Boundary Sentinel, a web-based newspaper.