When it comes to the opposite sex, hands are something that I have always noticed immediately.
I don't have some weird hand-fetish, but I am totally disgusted by long fingernails on guys. I don't care if they are long for guitar picking, nose picking or coke snorting. Long fingernails on guys are GROSS.
Fortunately, Adam has always kept his nails very short, tidy and clean.
While I demand nice looking hands from my man, ironically, I have incredibly ugly hands. My fingers are short and stubby, my skin tends to be dry, and they turn bright red when exposed to extreme temperatures (which are common 9/12 months a year in Toronto!). I am really not being overly critical here. People constantly comment on how red my hands are, and one doctor actually asked if I'd been checked for genetic diseases because of how stubby my fingers are.
It probably hasn't helped that when I was pregnant with Big A I decided to cut my fingernails super short. I was tired of trying to maintain them long because they were always very weak and prone to ripping. Yes, I mean ripping like paper - they were never strong enough to chip or break. I also reasoned that I didn't want to be scratching my soon-to-be-born child's delicate skin. And so it was, I kept my nails as short as possible until 3 weeks ago.
Then I suddenly decided to see what would happen if I tried to grow them again. Not so much for aesthetic reasons - I've accepted I have ugly hands - but for practical reasons: every winter when my skin gets particularly dry, the tips of my fingers crack, which is EXTREMELY PAINFUL!! Maybe if my fingertips are covered by nails, this won't happen?
To my surprise, my nails grew in...well...AS HARD AS NAILS! Okay, maybe not that hard, but definitely stronger than they've ever been. In fact, so far, they haven't broken (or ripped) once!
Is it the fact that I eat a much healthier diet than I did back in my 20s? Did having 2 kids change my nails (for the better), much like it did my hair (for the worse)? Who knows.
What I do know is my hands do look a bit less ugly AND I am enjoying all the functional benefits of having nails: untying stubborn knots, peeling stickers off of produce, scratching itches, etc. I have to say, they are really coming in HAND-Y ;)