I recently posted a request on Facebook asking which artificial nail myths to address in my next education update. Included below are two of the ten most requested myths. You can learn about the eight other myths by reading the full article on my website – link below.
Myth 1: Nails Need to Breath.
- No, they don’t! There is no reason to believe that nails need to “breathe”. Nails aren’t alive and don’t have lungs nor do they have any ability to absorb air into the nail plate. This myth makes no sense on many levels! In short, nails do NOT require an external air supply and do not breathe or exhale. 100% of the oxygen needed by the nail matrix to create a new nail plate comes from the blood stream and 0% comes from the outside world.
- Everything the nail plate needs to properly grow and function is delivered and/or removed by the blood flow to the matrix area and nail bed. The matrix is where the nail plate is created from nutrients which can ONLY be delivered by the blood stream. Neither “air” nor “nutrients” can be absorbed or “fed” to the nail plate from any external source.
- Moisture and natural nail oils leave the nail bed and pass through the nail plate at slower than normal rates, but they aren’t “trapped”. The nail plate’s moisture content is increased by 10-15%, and the oil content increases only slightly; both, serves to increase the flexibility of the natural nail plate.
- Waste products are removed from the matrix area and surrounding tissues by the blood as well, and are not released into the nail plate. Normal, healthy nail plates would continue to grow and thrive in a completely air-free environment, as long as a healthy flow of blood to the nail is maintained, so clearly… nails don’t need to breathe!
Myth 2: Nails need to take a break from enhancements.
- Not true! Nothing is gained by removing artificial nail enhancements or coatings for a few weeks or months before reapplying them. Since the nails do not need to “breathe”, no benefit is gained by waiting to reapply artificial nail enhancements or coatings, which includes nail polish. Nor does it make sense to assume the nails only need to breathe “every once-in-a-while”. This faulty reasoning is not supported by the facts.
- However as a general rule if the nail plate or surrounding skin shows signs of moderate to serious damage, injury, infection or adverse skin reactions, nail enhancements should not be applied. Why? In most countries, including the US, nail technicians are only permitted to provide cosmetic services on healthy skin and nails. Unhealthy nail conditions are “medical conditions” which should be examined by a doctor (or podiatrist) who can provide a proper diagnosis and treatment, if required. Nail technicians are not licensed to practice medicine. In cases of adverse skin reactions, discontinue use until the client’s doctor can be consulted as to the actual causes and possible solutions.
You can read the remaining eight myths by clicking on this link.