Losing The Acrylics For A Few Months A Year Can Do Wonders For Your Nail Health

Nothing beats the feeling of having a fresh set of acrylics from the salon. Whether you have trouble growing your own or want strong, sturdy nails that won't break easily, acrylics are the perfect solution. Acrylic nails "are a combination of a liquid monomer and a powder polymer that form a paste which is bonded to the natural nail" (via Harper's Bazaar). They give you that extra length, don't break as easily, and provide more to work with when it comes to trying out fun and creative nail designs. There's no denying that they can completely elevate your look and are fun to style, but unfortunately they aren't the healthiest.

The tools and materials that are used for acrylics can all cause damage to and weaken your natural nails. To keep your nails healthy and give them time to heal, it's best to take a break ever so often so that they have time to rejuvenate themselves.

Acrylic nails can weaken your natural nails

According to Izabelle Bellamy, a technician at East London's Stunt Dolly's Salon, acrylic nails shouldn't damage your real nails. However, they often do due to poor technique by salon technicians (via Refinery29). She tells Refinery29, "The real damage is caused by heavy-handed nail technicians. Be wary of over-filling and drilling, this will cause weak and peeling nails — and even painful results." To limit the damage done to your natural nails, always make sure that you go to a professional, reputable salon to ensure you receive the best care each time.

If you're a regular and consistently get acrylic nails and refills, be sure to take a three- to six-month break from the salon to allow them to heal and get them back to their prime health (via Clutch Nails). Get your nails removed by professional salon technicians to avoid any damage to your bed.

Ways you can get healthier, stronger nails

When you get your acrylic nails removed, there are a few steps you can take to help strengthen your natural nails while you wait for your next salon appointment. To start, you'll want to skip cutting your cuticles and instead push your cuticles back. Celebrity manicurist Deborah Lippmann tells Glamour, "Your cuticles are the last line of defense, acting as a shield to block the spread of bacteria from moving in on your nail. Cutting them can potentially irritate or infect your nail." Use a cuticle oil daily to keep your cuticles and nails hydrated. According to Ama Quashie, manicurist and founder of Ama salon, "Cuticle oil works by hydrating the cuticle and nail bed, which is why it's such an important step in nail care, whether you're growing your nails or simply want them to look their best" (via Elle).

Nail experts also recommend ditching the nail hardeners. Instead, focus on moisturizing your hands, especially after washing them. Just like your face, your nails need moisture too to avoid dryness and breakage.