Getting used to longer nails

Nail care, nail problems, and the use of nails in playing the classical guitar.
Captonius
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Getting used to longer nails

Post by Captonius » Thu Jan 19, 2017 6:37 am

Hi all. :D
Happy 2017 to everyone.

I'm having a little difficulty getting used to longer nails for playing. I grow them out but eventually cut my nails as it begins to feel so strange. I am an older beginner and have only been playing since 2015 (with a 7 month break in 2016).

How did you all get used to longer nails? How can I strengthen them?

TIA
Captonius

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jpryan
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Re: Getting used to longer nails

Post by jpryan » Thu Jan 19, 2017 9:26 pm

How long are you trying to grow them? The longer mine get the more likely they are to break, chip, split, etc., so I keep them as short as I can get away with. Typically they're not longer than half a millimeter over the fingertips when viewed from the palm side. The thumb nail gets a little longer.
Keep them moisturized (with oil and/or lotion).
--John

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Erik Zurcher
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Re: Getting used to longer nails

Post by Erik Zurcher » Thu Jan 19, 2017 10:50 pm

My advice: never cut your nails. Use a file, then micromesh 2400, 4000 and finally 12000 for polishing.
Reedition Domingo Esteso by Conde Hermanos 2004; Kenny Hill, model Barcelona 2001
"While you try to master classical guitar, prepare for a slave's life: the guitar will forever be your master and you its slave".

Captonius
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Re: Getting used to longer nails

Post by Captonius » Fri Jan 20, 2017 8:26 am

jpryan wrote:How long are you trying to grow them? The longer mine get the more likely they are to break, chip, split, etc., so I keep them as short as I can get away with. Typically they're not longer than half a millimeter over the fingertips when viewed from the palm side. The thumb nail gets a little longer.
Keep them moisturized (with oil and/or lotion).
Hi there,
Thanks for the reply. To be honest, I have no idea how long to grow them. My teacher hasn't given any advice other than telling me to let them grow. He hasn't even talked about shaping them. I use a lotion on my hands twice daily and every second/third day I use something similar to tissue oil.

Captonius
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Location: Cape Town, South Africa

Re: Getting used to longer nails

Post by Captonius » Fri Jan 20, 2017 8:28 am

Erik Zurcher wrote:My advice: never cut your nails. Use a file, then micromesh 2400, 4000 and finally 12000 for polishing.
Hi there, Thanks for the reply.

I have sandpaper and I prefer it to cutting for sure... but since I have had no input from my teacher regarding my nails, I am at a loss and just clip them as I always have before...

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jpryan
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Re: Getting used to longer nails

Post by jpryan » Fri Jan 20, 2017 5:22 pm

Captonius wrote:I have sandpaper and I prefer it to cutting for sure... but since I have had no input from my teacher regarding my nails, I am at a loss and just clip them as I always have before...
How long are your teacher's nails and how does he or she maintain them? Since your teacher has told you to grow them, yet you keep cutting them, I guess you shouldn't be surprised that the subject of shaping and length has been ignored. Maybe you'll need to bring it up in your lessons.
--John

souldier
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Re: Getting used to longer nails

Post by souldier » Fri Jan 20, 2017 6:16 pm

Your teacher should be the first to teach you how to properly take care of your nails. If they don't know this fundamental thing, you'd be better off learning from someone else, or even being self-taught
"Success grants its rewards to a few, but is the dream of the multitudes.
Excellence is available to all, but is accepted only by a few." - Christopher Parkening

Emil Krasich
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Re: Getting used to longer nails

Post by Emil Krasich » Fri Jan 20, 2017 7:15 pm

souldier wrote:Your teacher should be the first to teach you how to properly take care of your nails. If they don't know this fundamental thing, you'd be better off learning from someone else, or even being self-taught
Agreed. Invest in a glass file, a buffer, biotin, and some rub in nail conditioner like healthy hoof or hard as hooves. Pumping Nylon has some good tips on shaping and ramps, but I'm sure that you can find plenty of info on nails and classical guitar online. I wouldn't recommend nails longer than a millimeter or 2 past the tip of your finger.

2handband
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Re: Getting used to longer nails

Post by 2handband » Fri Jan 20, 2017 8:33 pm

Kinda hard to believe a classical guitar instructor isn't addressing nail care.

It's a matter of preference, really. I keep mine just barely long enough to catch the string. Don't cut them; use a file.

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spanishguitarmusic
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Re: Getting used to longer nails

Post by spanishguitarmusic » Sat Jan 21, 2017 1:00 am

I just keep them short and not too long past the edge of my fingers. As long as they can catch the strings, that's good enough for me. Always file your nails, but don't cut them at all. You can use some lotion or vitamin E oil on your nails. I've even heard that garlic can be used on them to strengthen them. I haven't tried to use garlic, so I don't know if it works or not.

2handband
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Re: Getting used to longer nails

Post by 2handband » Sat Jan 21, 2017 1:02 am

spanishguitarmusic wrote:I just keep them short and not too long past the edge of my fingers. As long as they can catch the strings, that's good enough for me. Always file your nails, but don't cut them at all. You can use some lotion or vitamin E oil on your nails. I've even heard that garlic can be used on them to strengthen them. I haven't tried to use garlic, so I don't know if it works or not.
It doesn't matter if it strengthens your nails or not, the real purpose of the garlic is to keep vampires from crashing your gig.

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spanishguitarmusic
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Re: Getting used to longer nails

Post by spanishguitarmusic » Sat Jan 21, 2017 1:05 am

2handband wrote:
spanishguitarmusic wrote:I just keep them short and not too long past the edge of my fingers. As long as they can catch the strings, that's good enough for me. Always file your nails, but don't cut them at all. You can use some lotion or vitamin E oil on your nails. I've even heard that garlic can be used on them to strengthen them. I haven't tried to use garlic, so I don't know if it works or not.
It doesn't matter if it strengthens your nails or not, the real purpose of the garlic is to keep vampires from crashing your gig.
:lol: So true, that'll work for sure!

Captonius
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Re: Getting used to longer nails

Post by Captonius » Sat Jan 21, 2017 2:30 pm

jpryan wrote:
Captonius wrote:I have sandpaper and I prefer it to cutting for sure... but since I have had no input from my teacher regarding my nails, I am at a loss and just clip them as I always have before...
How long are your teacher's nails and how does he or she maintain them? Since your teacher has told you to grow them, yet you keep cutting them, I guess you shouldn't be surprised that the subject of shaping and length has been ignored. Maybe you'll need to bring it up in your lessons.
He hasn't really showed me his nails. I asked him about nail care and he kind of brushed it off... The only reason I cut them again was they were getting in the way of doing other things and since he has not explained how to shape them, they just grow as my left has nails do... normal.

Captonius
Posts: 35
Joined: Sat Sep 10, 2016 2:06 pm
Location: Cape Town, South Africa

Re: Getting used to longer nails

Post by Captonius » Sat Jan 21, 2017 2:32 pm

souldier wrote:Your teacher should be the first to teach you how to properly take care of your nails. If they don't know this fundamental thing, you'd be better off learning from someone else, or even being self-taught
You're right. I might have to consider a new teacher this year... One that will actually spend a moment explaining proper nail care.

Captonius
Posts: 35
Joined: Sat Sep 10, 2016 2:06 pm
Location: Cape Town, South Africa

Re: Getting used to longer nails

Post by Captonius » Sat Jan 21, 2017 2:33 pm

Emil Krasich wrote:
souldier wrote:Your teacher should be the first to teach you how to properly take care of your nails. If they don't know this fundamental thing, you'd be better off learning from someone else, or even being self-taught
Agreed. Invest in a glass file, a buffer, biotin, and some rub in nail conditioner like healthy hoof or hard as hooves. Pumping Nylon has some good tips on shaping and ramps, but I'm sure that you can find plenty of info on nails and classical guitar online. I wouldn't recommend nails longer than a millimeter or 2 past the tip of your finger.
Not sure if Hard as Hooves is here in South Africa... lol...I have a file and sandpaper. I will have to read on here more too for some more tips.

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