The Dangers of Using Acrylic Nails

Acrylic nails may look great, but they pose a potential hazard to your health. They can cause inflammation, skin, burning, pain and allergic reactions.
dangers of using acrylic nails

It’s true that acrylic nails may look nice, they’re perfect for special occasions and they transform the look of our hands. However, they can also cause a lot of problems that would be best to avoid.

You may enjoy the look of acrylic nails but they come with a high price tag on your health.

In this article, we’ll tell you all you need to know about the dangers of using artificial nails.

Read it before deciding if you want to use them or not.

Why are acrylic nails so popular?


More and more women of all ages are wearing artificial nails or extensions.

Acrylic nails give of a sense of “perfection” because they’re made from plastic. They are seen in fashion magazines and on celebrities.

It’s easy to see why women prefer to use artificial nails: they cover the imperfections of natural nails and they just look perfect.

Acrylic nails are painted and often covered in designs, which is impossible on shorter or irregular natural nails.

If you have a bad habit of biting your nails or you need them to look good for work, acrylic nails are an easy alternative.

The same is true for weddings, parties and other special events in our lives.

Also read: Strengthen Brittle Nails

Beware of artificial nails


While they may seem harmless, both application and wear can cause problems. Let’s take a look at what happens at the salon when we get acrylic nails:

  • The chemical compounds used, resins or formaldehyde, can cause inflammation, separation of the natural nail from the skin, burning, pain and allergic reactions.
  • There are even cases of some women who have completely lost their natural nails and destroyed the nail bed. If this happens, the nail will never grow back.
  • You’re most likely inhaling toxic fumes and other irritants if the salon where you get your nails done is not well ventilated.
  • Some salons use a substance called methyl methacrylate to adhere nails. This chemical causes severe damage to the respiratory system and upon direct contact with the fingers.
  • Using a hair dryer to dry nails faster is a really common mistake. The problem here lies in the fact that some of these substances used to apply the acrylic are flammable upon contact with high heat.


  • Many times beauty salons don’t properly clean and sterilize their instruments and materials once they’re done using them on a customer. This means the next customer will likely contract any disease, fungus for example, that the customer before them had.
  • Also make sure the esthetician wears latex or plastic gloves. A cut or scrape on the hands is the ideal place for all types of diseases that spread by contact to thrive.
  • Don’t cut or push back your cuticle. Don’t forget that the cuticle acts as a natural barrier to prevent infection and harmful microorganisms from getting into your body.
  • Wash and dry your hands before the nails are applied so there’s no trace of moisture on the nails. This prevents fungi from spreading once the nails are in place.

More issues with acrylic nails

When you leave the beauty salon, the consequences don’t end even if it’s a reputable one with a qualified staff.

The most common side effects are:

  • Acrylic nails are completely rigid and can cause injuries from the slightest blow. This means the plastic nail will pull the natural nail with it. It’s extremely painful and takes the nail a long time to regrow.
  • Artificial nails come with a much higher risk of infection. Bacteria and microorganisms that cause disease can accumulate in any pocket between the natural nail and the acrylic.


  • Allergic reactions are common with artificial nails. This is due to the plastics and toxins they’re made from. The result: red, swollen and itching fingers.
  • If the acrylic nail is damaged, it will be much easier for dirt, viruses and bacteria to accumulate. When this happens, you need to remove the damaged nail and replace it with a new one as soon as possible.

Visit this article: What Does Nail Biting Say About Your Personality?

Wearing acrylic nails is not a decision that should be taken lightly.

If after reading this article, and despite the dangers, you still want to wear acrylic nails, get them done at a professional salon by a qualified esthetician. Make sure the area is well ventilated, bring your own file and watch for any changes or pain in your fingers and nails.

If necessary, remove a nail that is causing problems until the pain subsides. And whenever possible, give your nails a break from acrylic.