As cosmetologists and nail technicians working at Tootsies, we get asked for our opinions on a lot of topics every day. “What shape would make my nails look the best?” “What’s the popular color choice this season?” “What looks right with my skin tone?”
One question that deserves a mass answer is, “Do my nails need a break from polish?” Here are a few things you should know…. There seems to be a general misconception that nails need to “breathe”… To dispel the myth and help you understand, here is a description of the make-up of a nail and how it gets it’s nourishment, courtesy of Nail Systems International.
Blood vessels provide oxygen and nutrients to the hand, fingers, and nails through millions of tiny blood vessels. The veins carry waste and carbon dioxide way. This intricate process is what feeds the matrix, so the matrix can produce healthy nail cells.
These healthy nail cells make up the surrounding soft tissue of the nail plate, eponychium, lateral folds, hyponychium, bed epithelium, etc. These are all living tissue. The nail bed is also living tissue consisting of a dermal and epidermal layer. The upper layer is similar the type of skin found on the inside of your mouth. This is also the layer that is attached to the underside of the natural nail plate.
The natural nail plate is a moveable solid and rides a rail and grove track to move out and grow. It is primarily comprised of keratin (just like your hair). The natural nail plate is not living – it does not breathe. Because it is made up of non-living keratin, it does not hurt to have your nails clipped – same as it doesn’t hurt to have your hair cut. The nail plate is healthy when the health of the nail bed, matrix and surrounding tissue are properly cared for – it does not need to “breathe” to be healthy.
Even though your nail doesn’t “breathe”, let me just emphasize that the nail bed, matrix, and surrounding tissue, do need to be cared for, and just like your hair, benefit greatly from regular conditioning. Taking your polish off a few days before a visit, to treat it with cuticle oil is a great way to help your nails stay pink and healthy. Another way to get conditioning is to opt for no polish with your winter pedicure. Our winter pedicure is all about treating the skin well, warming you up, and increasing circulation with our hot boots and rich Vermont made peppermint chocolate products.
Ultimately, weather or not you should take a break from polish is a personal choice…. And if your not sure, come in for a pedicure and ask us! We are always ready to talk with you about your nails and their good health.
Here is a direct link to our article source: http://www.nsinails.com/nail-lab/science-of-beauty/dispel-the-myth-nails-donrt-need-to-breathe.html#.UczXB_nrwy4