I decided to get acrylic nails on a whim. I have always had long and dare I say beautiful nails so getting artificial ones were never my priority. But I was bored and wanted to try something different.
Worst mistake ever.
They looked nice for about 3 days. Then I slammed my index finger against a door and my nail cracked across the nail bed and it was downhill from there. Since then 2 more of my nails have cracked, spitting painfully across the nail beds and I had to cut them off.
Following my less than stellar experience, I decided to see what the literature said about acrylic nails and it was quite a revelation. Because I want you to make an informed decision, here are the facts I have learnt about acrylic nails.
What are Acrylics?
These are artificial nails that are bonded onto your nails. Unlike press on nails, acrylics are moulded onto your nails and buffed into shape.
Dangers Associated with Acrylics
Trauma to your nail bed
Acrylic nails are much more rigid with a much stronger bond than between a real nail and a nail bed. So any collision to the nails; i.e, a bump or knock, can lift the natural nail at the base. This rigidity leads to serious nail breaks which can be quite extreme depending on your nail strength.
Weakening of Your Natural Nails
Constant use of acrylics can affect can your nail growth over time weakening your nails, making them prone to breakage. In addition, they dry out the natural oils on your nails making them more prone to splitting. This is much worse if MMA is used because it makes your nails more sensitive to trauma.
Bacterial and Fungal infections
When your nails are spilt which is likely it exposes a gap between the nail and nail bed, this warm environment is perfect for bacteria and fungi growth. constant use of acrylics prevents makes treatment difficult. due to repeated infections. These infections are not restricted to the wearer but are easily transmitted to others. This is why some hospitals prevent employees from wearing artificial nails. There is evidence that a nurse wearing acrylic nails led to several infant deaths from a transmitted infection
This is because acrylic nails promote the growth of gram-negative bacilli and yeast beneath the nail bed.
Use of Dangerous chemicals
The chemicals used to apply acrylic nails are unhealthy, they may contain resins and formaldehyde that have been linked to cancer. In addition, Long term exposure to these chemicals can lead to the destruction of the nail matrix.
In some women, acrylic nails cause contact dermatitis as well as long term allergies. These result in inflammation and thinning of the nail beds with healing lasting up to a year.
Inhibit your natural nail growth
Even when applied correctly acrylics inhibit nail growth, because your nails need to be filed down for the acrylics to adhere properly to your nails. The removal process requires your nails to be soaked in acetone which also affects their growth.
Tips for acrylics ( if you must have them)
- Acrylic nails transmit bacteria, so dont use them in a health setting
- Take at least a 2-3 month break in between your nail application so that your natural nails can recover.
- Skip trimming your cuticle because they protect your nails and the surrounding skin from infection.
- Reserve artificial nails for special occasions.
- Take natural supplements Biotin, Silica, L-Cysteine, and B-Complex vitamins which can make help make your nails stronger.
Let me know what you think in the comments below, are they a yes for you or a heck no?
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