Why a Glass Nail File Is the Key to Healthier Nails

Allow us to convince you to make the switch.

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Glass nail files don't just look like an upgrade from economy to first class, these nail shaping tools actually don't get dull after a handful of uses.

While you'll be able to shape and file your nails without having to replace your emery board every other DIY manicure, glass files — also known as crystal files — are actually more gentle on nails (especially on natural), so you'll be less prone to experience peeling and splitting while grooming your nails.

"Glass nail files are able to quickly smooth out any rough edges or anything that may be catching in your hair. They are best suited for natural nails since the sanding grit is very fine," says Lexi Suga, nail expert and founder of Notox Nails in Beverly Hills. "If you use it on gel nails or artificial nails, it is possible, but it will take a very very long time and it will also wear out your glass file quickly."

Suga adds that emery boards last about a month depending on how often you use them, and that glass files are extremely easy to keep sterile when being shared (like at a salon for example): simply wash them with soap and water or alcohol, and pat them off.

Since you don't have to replace a glass file as often, you're producing less waste. "Glass nail files are much more sustainable. They are easy to disinfect and can be used for over six months to a year!" Suga explains. "If you are only using it at home on your own nails then you do not need to disinfect it. Just do not share it with others, even your family members."

Ahead, the five best glass and crystal nails files to add to your manicure tool kit if you're convinced to make the switch.

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OPI Crystal Nail File

OPI Crystal Nail File
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While emery boards wear down with every use, the abrasive surface of OPI's glass file is permanently etched so it lasts forever.

Price at time of publish: $16

Londontown Glass File

Londontown Glass File
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Use this sleek file to shape nails with a smooth, even finish.

Price at time of publish: $12

Nail Tek Crystal Nail File With Fuchsia Case

Nail Tek Crystal Nail File With Fuchsia Case
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This glass file conveniently comes with its own protective case. The fuchsia shade is easy to find at the bottom of any bag.

Price at time of publish: $11

GUiSHEM Premium Nail Shiner & File

GUiSHEM Premium Nail Shiner & File
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On top of shaping nails, GUiSHEM's file offers an extra glossy finish, thanks to its innovative photo-etched design.

Price at time of publish: $17

Ulta Beauty Crystal Nail File

Ulta Beauty Crystal Nail File
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Looking for a file that goes gentle on fragile, natural nails? Look not further than Ulta's glass file with a black-and-white ombré design.

Price at time of publish: $9

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