Why Do Women Have Long Nails: 6 Reasons You Should Know

We often find ourselves appreciating the long nails of a woman. This makes us wonder why women have long nails in the first place. Is it only a fashion must-have? Or does keeping long nails signify something?

Whatever the case may be, it’s clear that long nails have been a feminine requirement for quite a while now.

So, the question still stands – why do women have long nails?

There are a number of reasons why a woman has long nails. Although following the current fashion trend is the major reason. Other reasons include ancient beliefs, making an impression, and using them as a weapon. Besides, there are some benefits of having long nails which are also a possible reason.

These are the reasons for women having long nails. However, if you want to know more about the reasons women like their nails long, then read along.

So, let’s begin-

The Origin Of Women Growing Out Their Fingernails

Before we jump into the reasons for women growing out their nails, let’s first take a look at where it all started.

origin of women growing out their fingernails
Source: Byrdie

Growing and painting nails have started thousands of years back. People knew nails were the mirror of their health. The condition of their nails would indicate if their health is in good shape or bad shape. 

That’s why people back then used to keep their nails slightly long. This way, they were able to tell if their health was in good shape. This is when the belief that long nails mean health started. Still, now a lot of people believe that long nails mean good luck and health.

Painting, on the other hand, started being popular from around 3200 B.C. Back then, women of Chinese royalty would paint their nails with flower petals and egg whites. Rumor has it they would paint their nails to differentiate the royals from the ordinary people. Painting nails were also for expressing their beauty. 

Around the same time, Egyptian women started painting their nails. The higher class people would paint their nails with darker shades of color. Whereas, people with lower social ranking would paint their nails with lighter shades. This was a way for the women to show their social ranking in any community. This is how the nail length and painting became a symbol of wealth.

This symbol of growing and painting nails has become more popular when Hollywood was first introduced. Which happened around the 1920s and 1930s. Every actress had long red nails which received huge popularity. This later became a trend which we’re still following. 

Though this trend has undergone a lot of changes and now has become common among women and men.

How Long Should A Women’s Fingernail Be?

We all know long nails are more preferred than short ones. Long nails have the ability to make us appealing. However, too long nails can be a bit intimidating. So the question often arises, how long should a nail be?

There is no specific standard as to how long a nail should be. However, it’s ideal to keep the nails a little longer than their width. Because this length increases the grip and doesn’t break easily. Short nails make the fingers look shorter and thicker. But based on hygiene, short nails are better.

Reasons Why Women Have Long Nails

Now it’s time to find out the reasons why women grow out their nails. There could be many reasons why a woman might like having long nails. 

Though the reasons are not solid. And they are not necessarily why a woman could have long nails. It depends on personal preference, she can do whatever she wants. However, we can still find out why this has been a trend for so long. So without further ado, let’s jump in-

Ancient Beliefs

Like we’ve mentioned before, there were many ancient beliefs regarding a woman’s long nails. Some of the popular ones are that long nails are considered a sign of good health and wealth. Women were encouraged to keep long nails and paint them.

This could be the reason why this trend has been passed down in recent years. Some women might still believe in these ancient theories.  That’s why they are still growing their nails out.

Creates An Impression

Making an impression on other people might be important to some women. As keeping long nails enhances one’s outlook, some might prefer having them. Women also tend to believe that men are attracted to women with nice nails. And that’s why they put a lot of effort into making their nails look perfect.

Long nails can increase the beauty of a person’s hands. The fingers look slim and elegant due to the perfectly shaped and painted nails. That’s why women use nail polish to make their beauty stand out. This also boosts their confidence. This is why women adore having long nails.

In case you’re interested in nail polish too, there are a lot of options to choose from. That’s why we’ve curated a list of the best ones for you-

opi nail lacquer

OPI Nail Lacquer, Red Nail Polish

opi nail lacquer black nail polish

OPI Nail Lacquer, Black Nail Polish

You can now dazzle everyone with your long-painted talons. Way to make an impression!

Fashion Statement

Long nails have been a part of the fashion industry for a long time now. Every female designer and celebrity love having long nails. Which is a major reason for all the hype around it. 

Nail designing has now become one of the most trending things in the high-fashion industry. Especially now that it has become an art form, a woman keeping long nails has become a necessity. That’s why a lot of men are now painting their nails black.

The role of long nails in the fashion industry has a huge contribution to long nails. I mean who doesn’t love a little compliment?

Advantages Of Having Long Nails

There are no major health-related benefits of having long nails. However, if you can’t open a knot, long nails might come in handy. Just like this, there are several perks of having long nails. 

Such as long nails can give you a good grip on everything. With long nails, you’ll be able to pick up hot or cold objects. They also protect your fingers and might come to your aid for scratching. That’s one of the reasons for growing out the pinky fingernail.

advantages of having long nails
Source: Popsugar

So, that’s why a woman might prefer having long nails. You never know, you might need her when you can’t open a can. 

A Kind Of Weapon

If you find long nails scary, that’s probably what the woman wanted. Because long nails can hurt people physically. And that’s why they can be a women’s first resort to self-defense. Believe me or not they have the capability to take a person’s eyes out. So if a woman gets attacked, using long and sharp nails will come to her aid.

So not only do long nails increase the beauty, but it also gives her the weapon she needs.

Playing Instruments

Another reason for women having long nails is that they need nails for playing any instrument. For example- playing the guitar. 

If a female guitarist has long nails, it helps her to strike the guitar strings without any difficulty. And she doesn’t have to use a guitar pick. And not only guitars but playing the ukulele also requires long nails.

So, this might also be a reason for a woman to grow out her nails.

Is Keeping Long Nails A Good Idea?

Wondering if keeping long nails is a good idea or not? Well, the answer to that question is simple.  Long nails are not always useful. They are more susceptible to injuries than short nails. Not only that, the chances of hurting oneself or others are a lot. 

More importantly, keeping long nails is not hygienic. And keeping them healthy and clean requires a lot of attention. Maintaining and caring for them could be a lot of work. On the other hand, short nails are easier to handle and harmless.

Here’s a quick overview of the merit and demerit of keeping log nails. This will help you understand the significance of nail length-



Creates an impression

Susceptible to injuries

Keeping up with the trend

Might cause accidents

Better grip


Acts as a weapon for self-defense

Maintaining requires a lot of effort and time

Helps to play instruments

Not easy to handle

That’s why keeping the nails to a convenient length is important. Otherwise, if you grow your nails too long, they’ll start curling up. And there are chances of growing diseases on your nails.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Is it better to have long or short nails?

It depends on your personal preference. Both short and long nails have advantages and disadvantages. However, maintaining short nails is easier than maintaining long nails. So, one should decide to depend on their ability to maintain.

Why are long fingernails attractive?

Long nails tend to make the fingers slim and elegant. Slim fingers are considered to increase the beauty of a person. Short nails, on the other hand, make the fingers look thick and short. For that reason, nails with long fingers are considered attractive.

Wahat do long fingernails mean?

According to some ancient beliefs, long fingernails are considered a sign of high status in society. Also, it might indicate the good health of the individual.

Signing Off

We hope you now know the reasons for women having long nails. However, a woman can have any kind of nail they want. Because long nails or short nails don’t define a woman.

Let us know if we were able to answer your question- why do women have long nails?

Hope you have a great day!

Katharyn Riedel

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