Nails and cuticles…. What we should know.

Ever looked at your nails and wondered about their purpose, was it maybe there for decoration, to paint bright red? Is it to scratch an itch….

Nope, the nail on your fingers and toes play and important role to protect the sensitive skin on your nail plate.


So does the cuticle also have its role. It is there to seal the nail bed off from bacterial and fungal infections.  Cut the cuticle and expose it, and you are open for those fungal infections.


So what exactly is a fungal infection on the nail?

One of the most common nail and cuticle disorders is the fungal infection. It is also called onychomycosis. Fungal infections are usually caused by a type of fungus called dermatophytes. These fungi typically infect nails through cuts or open areas of skin and this is exactly whey we should not be cutting the cuticles. It can off course also spread to other people with contact through infected surfaces like showers or pedicure tools that are not sterilized.

In my opinion, the cuticle stays healthy by moisturising it with a good quality oil like the Elim Cuticle MD that has a blende of 10 oils and also contains and SPF factor.

The Cuticle MD further has a base oil of fractionated coconut oil that is a natural anti bacterial oil.

The oils include calming functions but also oils that help with the healing of cut and infected cuticles.

I generally believe that pushing cuticles with cotton and an orange stick or simply using a nail brush daily keeps the cuticle healthy.

If you are unlucky and picked up a fungal infection on the nail or cuticle, we recommend the use of the Elim Fungal Force, a treatment designed specifically to target fungi on the nail, isolate it and kill the bacteria and heal the infection.

Ever heard of ram’s horn nail? This occurs when the toe nail thickens and begins to curve abnormally into a hook shape. This occurs when one side of the nail starts growing faster than the other.  Cut the nail evenly and nourish and protect it with a good quality cuticle oil. Gently brush the nail daily

Even if you are not familiar to any of the above, an ingrown toenail might be more familiar. Again this is caused by the way we cut the nails and can be avoided by simply not cutting into the side cuticle and nails.

These are only a few of the disorders we find that occur on the nail Suffering from any of them we recommend you contact your local pedicurist and find a prescription for the problem.

But here are a few things you can do from now on to keep your nails beautiful and healthy.

  • Keep a nailbrush in the shower and brush your toes and finger nails daily with soap or use the Illuminating Nail Cleanser from Elim.
  • Keep the Cuticle MD in your bag and moisturize the cuticles daily.
  • Once a month, go for a pedicure and insist that the cuticles are not cut, but rather pushed back.

Want to know more on how to effectively treat fungi and bacteria during a pedicure, contact Elim today on for more information.


Pedicures for diabetics



Diabetic? I bet you avoid sugar…. If you get sugar scrubs in the salon, you should read further.



I went to the optometrist the other day. My goodness what an insightful visit. I was there to get some new reading glasses, but I got so much more.

I guess it was because I went on a really quiet day and the gentleman had a lot of time on his hands, or maybe he was a locum and only wanted to see 3 clients for the day and chose to spend 2 hours with each person.

Either way, he did a VERY VERY thorough test, which also included taking photographs of my eyeballs.

Yup, I am sure most people are familiar with this, but it was news for me.

He then placed the image on a big screen and started reading the tealeaves….

To read more on what the Iris tells us you can read what Dr Roy Sr, MD
Associate Clinical Professor from the Department of Ophthalmology at the
University of Arkansas had to say. click here.

I am a pale South African, but after this session, I now know that my forefathers were heavy pigmented. Good thing living in Africa to know I’m part of a rainbow nation. It kind of made me feel more at home and local I suppose.


The second thing he shared was that I had 0, NO, nada Diabetic genes in my body. I had no family with Diabetic history, I will never get it and there is no trace of it in my geneology. Wow that was good news, but knowing me, I started walking around, now constantly thinking about this Diabetic thing.  I found a facinating article on research that was done by a Dr in the USA.  Read more here.


To be honest, my knowledge of Diabetics goes as far as my friend who has to wake up every 3 hours to measure her son’s blood sugar. I know there are different types and I know that sugar is bad if you have it.

If this is your thing and you want to read more, feel free to follow the research here.  It gives a great understanding.

To get back to my session at the optomitrist…  it then hit me….. and this is something completely different, but this is where my thoughts went… If I put cream on my legs and it gets absorbed by my skin, the active ingredients go through the skin right? Some more than others. Just think of Muscle relaxers, you rub them on the skin and they get absorbed and have a direct effect on your muscle.


So here is the part that bothered me. Why are we using sugar scrubs on Diabetics when doing pedicures?

Surely we ask the question… Does it actually get absorbed?  I followed a research project and found this interesting article.

Are you a Diabetic? I think if you are, you should be asking these questions and maybe demanding a non-sugar scrub when going for your next Mani or Pedi.



Upon reading more on this subject, I learned that Sugar does not naturally get absorbed when placed on the skin, but with abrasion in scrubbing, it enters the skin.

I also learned that it is more or less the same thing that happens on the skin when we bath in epson salts…. the same level of absorption appears, or i suppose those nicotine patches smokers wear.

See a discussion on someone who is T1 diabetic and cooked plums when testing his sugar.

So this is my advice to you. Next time when you go for a Pedi, ask for the MediHeel Pedicure, It is free of all sugars and is completely safe and tested for Diabetics.