I once paid $38 for a bottle of Dr Haushka’s Neem Oil and after a year of using it on and off felt mostly disappointed and somewhat robbed. Fast forward a couple of years and I have before me a very affordable and effective alternative that will rescue dry, brittle nails and ragged cuticles called Complete Essential Oils Derma Neem Nails ($7.99 for 4ml).

My nails are in fairly good condition – they always seem stronger in the summer (more sunlight equals vitamin D equals strong nails??). I was once given a manicure by a woman who said very firmly that most nail issues are due to lack of hydration. I took this to heart and I usually make sure to rub my nails with whatever rich moisturizer I have lying around. To prepare for my Derma Neem Nails test, I stopped this habit and within 48 hours I could see that my nails looked drier and a couple of them were even beginning to look ridged.

Derma Neem Nails  improved matters almost instantly and a daily dab is keeping my nails looking perfectly well nourished. Application is by a well-behaved roller-ball tip – another plus over the Dr Haushka, which is messy and wasteful to use. What I like about Derma Neem Nails is that is has emu oil, which essential fatty acids - linolenic, linoleic, oleic, and palmitic – and is highly compatible with human sebum. It is known to stimulate hair growth – and what’s good for hair tends to be good for nails as well.  Grape seed oil also has fatty acids and, like all of the oils here, is a good source of vitamin E. A study in the UK found that topical vitamin E was helpful for yellow nail syndrome.

The makers of Derma Neem Nails recommend that if your nails and cuticles are in a particularly sorry state to exfoliate with a mixture of salt and virgin olive oil before applying their oil rescue.

This is a little gem that has nailed its job at a price that break the bank.

Ingredients: Grape seed oil, emu oil, jojoba oil, proprietary blend of essential oils.