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Broken nails from nail polish: do nails become more brittle if you paint them frequently?
Broken nails from nail polish: do nails become more brittle if you paint them frequently?

Is it harmful to paint your nails? Does the nail polish make the nails brittle? We asked an expert and got a clear answer.

Broken nails from nail polish: do nails become more brittle if you paint them frequently?
Broken nails from nail polish: do nails become more brittle if you paint them frequently?

Is it a common myth or is it really true: nails get brittle if you paint them all the time !? We all have this one friend who claims she has the most beautiful and toughest nails since she didn't paint them in a continuous loop or even let them stay completely. Make-up is basically not harmful to the skin either. So is it the same with nails? We investigated the question and spoke to nail expert Sabine Joldzic.

Does nail polish really make nails brittle?

If you were to answer it briefly and concisely, I would definitely say: YES. Nail polish harms the nail. Some nails are naturally more stable. In the case of weak fingernails, it becomes apparent relatively quickly if they do not tolerate the nail polish well - for example in the form of splinters, discoloration, stains, etc. There are also “gentler” water-based nail polishes, but it always depends on the result you get expected. If you have high demands on the nail polish, I would rather use a more common product. Then you have to expect that the nail will be stressed. It's still a chemical product that gets on the nails like e.g. with formaldehyde etc … These products remove moisture from the nail, making the nails more brittle.

A common misconception is that the nails have to "breathe". This is wrong, however - nails are made of horny tissue and cannot “breathe” at all. If the nails are already brittle, one should not paint over and over again - the nails will not become more stable, the problem will get worse. Then the nail polish won't hold up well either. In any case, you would have to take a break.

What can I do if my nails are damaged?

If you have brittle fingernails, I would of course recommend longer breaks. It's hard to tell a time. You just have to watch for yourself how the nail reacts to nail polish. I would also advise against so-called “care varnishes” - these are nonetheless chemical products that stress the nail. So when you take a break you should really leave the nail alone.

How can I take care of my fingernails?

The nails should be cared for with natural means, for example with oil baths or with a care oil that is applied directly to the nail and massaged in. For oil baths, simply put some oil (the higher the quality, the better) in a bowl and bathe the nails in it for 5-10 minutes. If you like it cheaper - a good olive oil can of course also be used. You can never go wrong with natural oils. It's about keeping the nails plump. Japanese manicures can also work wonders. As a customer, you should make sure that the nail designer does not use files that are too coarse. You can find out everything about Japanese manicure here.

Is it better to use acetone-free nail polish remover?

I consider it a myth that acetone-free nail polish remover is better for the nails. Sure, nail polish remover is again a chemical product that gets on the nails, but unlike nail polish, it doesn't stay on for long. Experience has shown that if you use acetone-free nail polish remover, you have to work longer on the nail to get the nail polish off. This means that the nails are exposed to chemicals for longer. However, if you use acetone-containing removers, the whole thing is basically very quick. Then you should wash your hands and care for your nails with natural oils. For shellac or gel nails you should of course use acetone-free nail polish remover.

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