Nailed It

Every … once a year? once every other year? I have to buy a package of emery boards to file my nails. I guess I must get enough protein or something because my nails are very strong and I have to basically sand them down every week or so to make them a length that will let me Do Stuff.

When I had my bone tool making class and used both files and sandpaper to work the bones, a lightbulb went off — why am I using emery boards, which are like sandpaper (refining), when what I need to do is file down these suckers?!

So I bought a nail file:



I know this seems like the most miniscule change, but what sold me on this file is that for a little more than the price of a pack of emery boards, I have a file that should last for decades. In fact, the review that sold me on this particular file said that she had bought one in the 1960s, had been  using it ever since, and only bought this new one because the plastic handle crumbled off and it was hard to use! If you are interested in the brand, it’s a Pfeilring Sapphire. It has a fine side and a more, ah, rigorous side, so you get the ability to saw down the claws and also shape them nicely 🙂

I hope to never buy another pack of emery boards (and their extra paper and plastic) ever again! Every little bit counts.



  1. It is so funny how obvious things suddenly dawn on us. I have always used a nail file since mum bought me a file/scissor/tweezers set one Christmas – I think I was 14. It was a really old-fashioned set (along with the lavender) soap but I used all three till they gave up the ghost. Plastic nail file crumbled, scissors’ screw came out and tweezers lost their grippy springy-ness. I am now on my second & third nail file in my lifetime. One for the bathroom, one for my handbag. I wouldn’t have it any other way…

    Ps – I suspect the healthy nails are a sign of a good diet! My nails grow like billy-o. I need to file them every 2-3 days to be able to play musical instruments, knead dough, garden, work with clay… Needless to say, nail varnish is a once in a blue moon occurrence. Other women look so polished with it. Me… an afternoon in the garden or a morning throwing pots and I look ridiculous…!

    1. My grandmother told me files were too rough on fingernails and that she only used emery boards — and I never thought to question until I worked with each, more or less, in a different context.

      Yes, I don’t want to spend one of my precious toiletry coupons on nail polish because then you also need remover — another coupon! I also have the same issue as you — time in the garden or other work and the polish is a mess. I am also horrified at the thought of it flaking off in my bread dough!

      I did read how you can make a buffing powder out of a little baking soda and oil of your choice, and use a bit of chamois or cloth to buff them for special occasions. I haven’t had an occasion to warrant doing that yet!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s