The nails have it

The nails have it

Monday, June 13, 2022


If you have a bad day, get your nails done. Have a special occasion? Get your nails done in preparation. One appointment you cannot reschedule – nails. The day can be a total waste of make-up, but all is well if the nails look good.  


However, gel manicures come with a price, and your nails pay for it. According to the American Association of Dermatology, gel manicures can cause nail brittleness, peeling and cracking. Repeated use can increase the risk of skin cancer and premature skin aging on the hands.  


To keep your nails healthy before, during and after gel manicures, dermatologists recommend the following tips: 


Be proactive with your manicurist.

Ask if tools are sterilized and look around to ensure they are cleaning and disinfecting tools after every client.  


Wear sunscreen.

Before getting a gel manicure, apply broad-spectrum, water-resistant sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher to your hands to protect them from the ultraviolet radiation used to seal gel nail polish to the nail. 


Only soak your fingertips in acetone.

When removing the nail polish, only soak your fingertips in acetone instead of your whole hands or fingers to protect the surrounding skin.  


Rehydrate your nails.

Between polishes, apply moisturizing products, such as petroleum jelly, to your nails and cuticles several times daily. This will minimize brittleness and help prevent your nails from chipping.  


Take a polish holiday.

Try not to wear nail polish for one to two weeks or longer to allow your nails time to repair. Consider getting a gel manicure for special occasions only.  


Talk to your doctor if you notice any unusual changes to your nail or have a persistent nail problem. 




Genesis HealthCare System’s Health and Wellness content conveniently provides accurate and helpful information. Your health history and current health may impact suggestions provided through our Health and Wellness content. Although we hope this information is helpful, it is not a substitute for your doctor's medical advice. Before making any significant changes, please consult your doctor.