I’ve never had acrylic nails before. I never had them for prom or the homecoming dance. I never got them done for a wedding or a job interview. Furthermore, I had never even had long enough nails to get any kind of manicure before this past summer.
But Rebecca talked me into getting them for my birthday this year. I had them done last Saturday and was pleasantly surprised. I never had acrylic nails because I was always afraid of the massive damage I’ve heard they do to nails — drilling the nail down to nothingness so that you can never take the acrylics off without having ugly, brittle nails.
I went to Nails by Lynn where I was less than pleased with the conversation, but ecstatic about the fact that they only hand-buffed my nails with a file before applying the acrylic and then drilled that down instead of my nail.
However, I did find myself gasping at work today with the cliche phrase “I broke a nail!”
It didn’t hurt, like I’ve heard it can — the tip simply broke off leaving my real nail poking out from underneath an acrylic base. I was able to file and buff and clear-coat it to halfway-decent looking, so I’m pleased enough.
It’s the second nail I’ve broken, the first being a similar situation. And I have to mention that they are the two fingers I use most often: my right pointer finger and thumb. The others still look surprisingly good considering my nail has grown a millimeter or two since I had them done.
Overall acrylic nail experience: good. I will probably take these off since I can’t find a place in New Orleans that does acrylics by just buffing (not drilling) so I’m afraid to get the two nails repaired anywhere except for at Lynn’s. However, I will definitely be getting them again.
One thing that this experience got me thinking about is why people generally seem to have a bad experience with acrylic nails. I found out that the reason most people’s nails are severely damaged after getting acrylics is that the nail technician drills down the nail too much instead of just buffing it. I also found out that some salons are using chemicals that are much more toxic and harmful than others, like methyl methacrylate, or MMA. Also, ripping them off, instead of having them properly soaked in acetone, can seriously damage your natural nail. Another problem associated with acrylics is nail infection. Look here to find some questions you should ask your nail technician.
***Update: I took the nails off today and my nails actually look healthier than they were before the acrylics! I guess it is all about how they’re done.***