Our latest trip to the salon for gel nail extensions and polish was certainly en-light-ening; it alerted us to a hidden “danger” (perhaps a dramatic word choice, but read on and decide for yourself) of tinkering with our talons on a weekly or bi-weekly basis.
Mid-appointment, we heard the client next to us say to her technician, “Sorry, can I just slip my gloves on before we continue?” Gloves? How can you get a manicure with those on? Looking over, we saw her slide her hands into fingertip-less gloves, that exposed just her nails. Only then did she put her fingers under the UV-light device needed to polymerize, or harden, the gel formula, making it durable (and minimizing drying time).
Our curiosity getting the better of us, we asked her what was up, and she kindly explained that the gloves, purchased on Amazon (Walmart and other retailers carry similar products) and made of the same kind of UV-protect material you see used for kids’ swimsuits, saved the skin on her hands and fingers from the harsh, extremely close-up rays. “We know by now the dangers of lying in a tanning bad, or even going outside without SPF on, but no one talks about this piece of the UV puzzle,” she said, adding that, when she was getting her nail re-done every week or two, she really noticed the age spots on the backs of her hands increase.
Really, it’s a small precaution to take, if it means saving our skin and keeping our nails on “point” at the same time. —Noa Nichol