DRY CUTICLES AFTER ACRYLIC NAILS: CAUSES AND PREVENTION

One of the issues that some people have is their cuticles become dry after they get acrylic nails.

Dry cuticles after acrylic nails happen when sensitive cuticles and their surrounding skin that come in contact with cleaning alcohol, polish remover, and acrylic chemicals. To prevent these chemical solutions from drying cuticles and the skin, they must be thoroughly removed as soon as possible and prolonged contact with the cuticles is avoided.

Let’s look at in detail what these chemicals are, how they dry the skin, and what to do to avoid it.

Cuticles are thin and easily affected by harsh chemicals.

Cuticles are the folds of the skin above the nail root where the nail start. Part of the cuticles where they meet the nail plate is thin. They are easy to be irritated or damaged when they come in contact with harsh, corrosive chemical solutions.

Our cuticles are just a small line around the nails. Many people mistakenly think they are just an extra piece of skin. On the contrary, these cuticles play a big role in protecting the nail root and shield it from the elements. Otherwise, dirt or bacteria can get through.

Naturally, these thin cuticles can do their job without having to be as thick as the skin on the rest of the fingers or hands. However, due to the harsh, man-made chemical solutions like acrylics, these thin cuticles are no match for them.

Alcohol used in acrylic nails application will dry out cuticles.

Before any nail service is performed, it is common practice to use rubbing alcohol to clean and disinfect hands and fingers. Moreover, rubbing alcohol can also dry out the skin by removing the natural oil layer on the skin. Without this natural oily layer, the moisture on the skin will evaporate away from the skin, leaving the skin, especially the cuticles, dry.

Since you must use alcohol in doing acrylic nails to clean and disinfect, practice using just the right amount. Excessive use of alcohol on cuticles and hands will make this dryness worse.

For sensitive thin skin, this phenomenon is even more pronounced.

Acetone used in an acrylic nail application will dry out cuticles.

Acetone is a chemical solvent used to remove nail polish. It is even harsher compared to alcohol. It is strong manufacturers had to add some skin conditioner to put back some oil on the skin where acetone comes in contact.

If you need to use acetone to remove gel polish, it will even take a worse effect on the cuticles. Furthermore, if you have to soak the old acrylics off the nails for 20 minutes or so, the natural oil on the cuticles are gone. There is no more protection layer to keep the moisture in.

Acrylic nail solution will dry out cuticles.

The acrylic liquid is the main cause of dry cuticles. When the acrylics are applied on the nails using an acrylic nail brush that is loaded with acrylic liquid. This liquid will touch the cuticles due to their close proximity to the nail that is being worked on.

Depend on the skill of the nail technician or the person who is doing acrylics, the amount of acrylic liquid, and how long this acrylic liquid will be in contact with the cuticles.

This acrylic liquid has a higher boiling temperature than alcohol and acetone. Therefore, it will stay on the cuticles longer.

Avoid putting on cuticle oil right after acrylic nails.

It is a thing to do at the wrong time. However, almost all nail technicians or people do acrylic nails at home do it. They tend to put cuticle oil on right after they finish doing acrylic nails and then go wash it off.

Putting cuticle oil on the acrylic nails right after they are done creates a big problem. Any remaining acrylic chemical solution will be trapped under the cuticle oil layer. No matter how well you wash your hands and nails, some oil still remains, and this will keep all acrylic solution from drying out.

Cuticle oil and acrylic liquid do not have any color so it is difficult to tell when they are on the cuticles. The only thing you can detect them is they have some fragrant in them to make them smell nice.

This acrylic solution will continue to interact with the cuticles and skin until it completely dries out. This could be hours or days, depend on how much the amount is trapped under the cuticle oil.

This will result in dry cuticles that you see a few days later.

Proper hand-washing techniques should be practiced after acrylic nails.

People who experience dry cuticles after they get acrylic nails because they are not instructed by their nail technicians to wash their hands and cuticles thoroughly. Either the customer or the nail technician incorrectly assumes that washing hands after getting acrylic nails is a simple procedure. However, this simple procedure is more involved.

Hand washing after getting acrylic nails should be done with the use of a nail brush to brush off any remaining acrylic chemical solutions with water and soap.

The proper way to do it is:

  • Wet your hands and a nail brush.
  • Put some hand soap on the brush or directly on the cuticles.
  • Gently brush each nail using a circular motion for at least 10 seconds. Doing so will give the fine bristles enough time to come in contact with the cuticle to brush away any remaining acrylic solution.
  • Rinse well under running water for 30 seconds, then dry.

How to keep cuticles from drying after acrylic nails.

  • Practice using alcohol and acetone on the cuticles with the appropriate amount and keep the contact time down to the minimum.
  • Do not put any cuticle oil after you have acrylic nails or ones that you just finish for customers.
  • Take time to wash hands thoroughly with water and soap to remove as much acrylic liquid as possible.
  • Dry hands with a fan for 5 minutes, preferably a heater fan. A hairdryer is a good option as warm blowing air will help this acrylic liquid evaporate faster.
  • Refrain yourself from putting on any cuticle oil or hand lotion on the cuticles for one hour.

Follow this, you should successfully remove all the acrylic nail liquids that can cause your cuticles to dry.

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