Acrylic Nails

The Help Desk

Sometimes the best answers to technical questions are from your peers. In this bimonthly column, respected nail veterans from across the country tackle reader questions ranging from the cause of problem lifting to chronic nail pickers to proper paraffin equipment.

Q: I have a client with very poor circulation, and therefore, very cold hands, making it difficult to keep her silk overlays from lifting. I have already tried pH balancers and extra silk and resin, but the lifting continues to occur. What else could I try that might work?

A: Jaime Schrabeck, Precision Nails, Pacific Grove, Calif.: Don’t assume that the lifting is related to poor circulation. Review your nail preparation procedure to ensure that the nail plate is properly cleansed and sanitized before product application. Your client may need an acid primer to promote adhesion.

Sue Roberts, My Nails of Westerville, Westerville, Ohio: We have some pretty cold days in Ohio, and cold fingers can really make it difficult to apply any nail enhancement. I usually ask a client with cold hands to first wash her hands in warm water. Then I give her a hot water bottle wrapped in a towel and ask her to keep each hand snuggled in it, switching from hand to hand until the service is complete. This works great on those cold days when clients come in chilled to the bone.

Tracey Stadamire, Tracey’s Un-4-gettable Nails, Portland, Ore.: I find that sealing silk wraps with a little glue gel holds the product in place quite well, in fact, so well that most of my silk clients wait anywhere from four to six weeks to return for a fill.

Michele Martinez, Chele’s Frills, Austin, Texas: It’s possible that the lifting is not due to cold hands. I’ve recently learned that my clients who don’t wear gloves while washing dishes have more lifting than those who do. Also, check to see if it’s lifting is occurring from the front or from the back of the nail. If it’s lifting from the front, it’s probably something your client is doing. If it’s lifting from the back, it’s probably something you are doing, such as exposing the cuticle to glue.

Marti Preuss, Hair Spa, Houston: You might perform a hand and arm massage prior to the service to stimulate circulation and warm the hands and fingers. Using a wrapped heating pad under the towel will keep hands warm during application. Be sure to thoroughly remove all nail shine and dehydrate the nail plate before application. Be sure not to touch the silk fabric with your fingers as this will transfer the oils in your skin to the fabric and could be a source of lifting. Instead of your fingers, try using a rubber-tipped cuticle stick to press the fiber onto the nail plate. Make sure the edges are sealed correctly with resin.

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