Nails flake for all kinds of reasons – a low water intake could be one, as water is needed to bind the fats that stick the layers of the nail together. Old emery boards can also fray the edges of nails, while we've found the glass file we've been trying recently splits nail tips like mad. But we've also discovered a solution to the nail surface unevenness caused by flaking – and the temptation to pick at the flakes, which makes them progress further down the nail, spoiling the appearance of polish. Use a nail buffer – the ones all chemists sell for shining the surface of nails – to smooth out your nail tips so the splits blend into the flat, healthy part of the nail. Applying varnish on top will put you off further picking.