Acrylic nails aren’t likely to harm your natural nails but can sometimes cause problems, such as an infection which becomes the danger zone for your health.
On the other hand, no amount of scrubbing can ever rid the hand of all its bacteria.The impossibility of sterilisation is why doctors and nurses so often wear gloves while interacting with patients.
Your natural nail grows under acrylics, so they need regular maintenance to keep nails healthy. It is important to get regular refills, have damaged nails repaired, and keep the nails clean and dry.
If an acrylic nail is damaged or as your natural nails grow, a gap can develop between the acrylic nail and your natural nail. This gap provides a moist, warm environment in which a nail infection can flourish. A nail infection might also occur if acrylic nails are too long or rigid, or the nails are applied with unsanitary tools. It’s also possible to have an allergic reaction to components of acrylic nails or their adhesives. Signs of a nail infection include redness, swelling and pus.
The removal process is just as important as the application process. Acrylic nails should be properly soaked in acetone and gently pushed off with an orangewood stick or cuticle pusher.
If you choose to have acrylic nails applied in a salon, take steps to minimize the risks:
Stick to salons that display a current state license, and work only with technicians also licensed by the state board.
Make sure your nail technician properly sterilizes all tools used during your treatment and washes his or her hands between customers.
Another way to protect your natural nail is to make sure your tech doesn’t overfile your nail prior to application; you’ll know it’s being overfiled if you feel any soreness or pain. Most importantly, never rip off your acrylic nails.
Request a new nail file — or consider bringing your own — since nail files can’t be sterilized.
Return to the salon every two to three weeks for maintenance.
If you apply acrylic nails at home, follow the safety precautions printed on the package. Work in a well-ventilated area, and protect the skin around your nails from the chemicals used during the application process.
Consider removing your acrylic nails and letting your natural nails breathe every two to three months. If you suspect a nail infection, consult a dermatologist for an evaluation.