Gel manicures: Tips for healthy nails

Although gel manicures can be beautiful and long-lasting, they can be tough on nails To keep your nails healthy before, during and after gel manicures, follow these tips from dermatologists: Ask if tools are sterilized, and look around to make sure he or she is cleaning and disinfecting them after every client

Never let your manicurist push or cut your cuticle, as this could lead to inflammation and infection Consider traditional nail polish instead of gel polish This is especially important if you experience recurring nail problems or are allergic to acetone, as acetone is required to remove gel polish Before getting a gel manicure, apply a broad-spectrum, water-resistant sunscreen to your hands to prevent skin cancer and premature skin aging This will help protect your skin from the ultraviolet lamps and LED lamps that are used to seal gel nail polish to the nail

Another option is to put on dark, opaque gloves with the fingertips snipped off before your nail polish is applied When the color begins to come off, don’t pick at the polish or use other nails or tools to remove it Instead, make an appointment with your manicurist to have it removed When having nail polish removed, only soak your fingertips in acetone instead of your whole hands or fingers to protect the surrounding skin To care for your nails in between gel manicures, dermatologists recommend the following tips: Take a nail polish holiday

Try not to wear nail polish for one to two weeks or longer This will allow your nails time to repair Rehydrate your nails Between polishes, apply a moisturizing product, such as petroleum jelly, to your nails and cuticles several times daily This will minimize brittleness and help prevent your nails from chipping

As is the case with most things, moderation is the key when it comes to gel manicures Consider getting a gel manicure for special occasions only, and see a board-certified dermatologist if you notice any unusual changes to your nails or have a persistent nail problem To learn more about nails or find a dermatologist in your area, visit aadorg

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