Close

Health

I have a client with brittle nails. What causes this and what should I do about it?

February 22, 2005

I have a client with brittle nails. What causes this and what should I do about it?

Answer

When the nail plate becomes dehydrated, the results can be peeling and splitting nails, which fray at the edges. As a consequence, the nails may break and become more fragile, and can easily catch on clothing. It may also be harder for clients with brittle nails to pick up small objects or button a shirt. This condition also causes polish to chip and peel, although it is still a good idea for the client to wear polish to help protect the nail plate from further dehydration. Use and suggest a non-acetone polish remover, which is also less drying. Treatments with formaldehyde can be drying when used regularly. Treating brittle nails is relatively simple. First, remind the client to wear gloves when using cleaning agents and detergents. Have her avoid trauma to the nail, and not use her nails as tools. Also, recommend clients use a hand moisturizer daily, which will also help moisturize nails. When working on clients with this condition you should avoid excessive mechanical manipulation in the cuticle area. Vigorously pushing back the cuticles with a metal implement, or cutting them, injures the nail matrix (the nail growth center) and causes the nail to weaken.

Health

What’s the cause of the pinkish-red oval area on the pad of my client’s toes?

I have a client who has a recurring problem with her fourth toes during the winter months. Both of her “ring finger” toes develop a pinkish-red oval area on the pad. Then a month later, when I see her again, the skin has become dry and hard like a callus, with the layers of skin peeling away to reveal a deeper, dark epicenter.  It’s extremely painful for her and, needless to say, we do not touch it. But it clears up in the summer when she’s wearing open-toed sandals, so I suspect it has to be due to the boots she wears in the winter. Plus she never puts lotion on her feet or uses a foot file in between visits. What do you think causes this?

Health

What are the big white spots on my natural-nail client’s nails?

I have a client who has been with me for about two years. She used to wear acrylic nails but has been a natural nail client for eight months or so. She has these white spots on her nails — big spots that are dry, but not flaky, right in the middle of the nail. I did try to buff them lightly but they do not come off or grow off. I had a new client come in last week who had the same on her toenails. She said it started after she had a pedicure done at another salon. Can you help?

Load More