5 ways acrylic nails can damage your natural nails

5 ways acrylic nails can damage your natural nails

Acrylic nails have been a popular beauty trend for decades, offering a quick way to achieve long, glamorous nails. However, beneath the allure of perfectly manicured hands lies a potential for significant damage to your natural nails. Here are five ways acrylic nails can negatively impact your nail health.

1. Nail weakening and thinning

The process of applying acrylic nails involves roughening up the surface of your natural nails to ensure better adhesion. This step requires buffing and filing, which can thin the nails over time. The repeated application and removal of acrylics can leave your natural nails weak, thin, and prone to breaking. The mechanical stress exerted on the nails can compromise their structural integrity, leading to long-term damage.

2. Chemical exposure

Acrylic nails are applied using a combination of a liquid monomer and a powder polymer. The chemicals in these substances can be harsh on your natural nails and surrounding skin. Prolonged exposure to these chemicals can cause nail discolouration, brittleness, and even chemical burns in severe cases. Additionally, some people may develop allergic reactions to the components in acrylic nails, resulting in redness, itching, and swelling around the nail area.

3. Nail infections

The application process of acrylic nails involves using adhesives that can trap moisture and create an environment conducive to bacterial and fungal growth. If the acrylic nail lifts or separates from the natural nail, moisture can get trapped underneath, leading to infections. Infections can cause symptoms like redness, swelling, pain, and pus formation. If left untreated, these infections can lead to more severe complications, including permanent nail damage.

4. Damage during removal

Removing acrylic nails is a delicate process that, if not done correctly, can cause significant damage to your natural nails. The common removal method involves soaking the nails in acetone, which can be extremely drying and damaging to both the nails and surrounding skin. Improper removal techniques, such as forcibly peeling or prying off the acrylics, can cause the top layers of the natural nail to be ripped off, leading to painful and weakened nails.

5. Inhibited nail growth

The use of acrylic nails can hinder the natural growth process of your nails. The constant covering and pressure on the nail bed can restrict proper blood circulation and oxygen supply, essential for healthy nail growth. Over time, this can lead to slow nail growth and changes in the nail’s texture and appearance. Additionally, the weight of the acrylics can put extra stress on the natural nails, causing them to split or crack as they grow out.

Tips for mitigating damage

While the allure of acrylic nails is hard to resist, taking some precautions can help mitigate the damage to your natural nails:

  • Take Breaks: Allow your natural nails time to recover between acrylic applications.
  • Moisturize Regularly: Use cuticle oils and moisturizers to keep your nails and surrounding skin hydrated.
  • Opt for Professional Removal: Always have your acrylics removed by a professional to minimize damage.
  • Consider Alternatives: Explore less damaging nail enhancement options, such as gel nails or dip powders.
  • Maintain Good Nail Hygiene: Keep your nails clean and trimmed, and avoid exposing them to harsh chemicals.

While acrylic nails can give you the length and look you desire, it’s essential to be aware of the potential risks and take steps to protect your natural nails. By being mindful of these damaging effects, you can enjoy the beauty of acrylics without sacrificing the health of your nails.

  • PublishedJune 19, 2024