What are those big, white flaky patches after the removal of a gel application?

What are the dry, peeling patches that appears on the nail bed after you remove your Gel application or your varnish and why do they appear?

Do you sometimes feel like you need a break in between a manicure or a pedicure? Usually the reason we feel this, is because of the condition our nails are in after prolonged varnish applications.

I decided to shed some light on what our nails really need and why we have those white patches that screams for hydration.

The big myth is that we need to give our nails time to breath in-between manicures. The truth is that our nails do not actually breathe. They get all their oxygen and food from our bloodstream and not from the environment.

Does this mean we can continually have varnish on the nail bed? Absolutely not, this only means that those big white patches of dryness you see after you remove your varnish, gel or acrylic nail is not an oxygen shortage.

These big white peeling patches are called keratin granulation. This happens when the top layers of the nail cells are removed and exposed.

The answer? A 3 week break from varnish, gel or any colour.

We love to make complex things simple and I will explain the structure of the nail briefly. The layers of your nail look like scales on a fish. These scales are made of keratin (a protein) and they get damaged and dried out by the use of specific chemicals – especially acetone. Acetone causes the scales to pull away from each other. This causes the dryness, ridging and peeling.

What advice can we give you?

  • Minimize the use of Acetone.

  • Minimize strong solvents like hand sanitising alcohols.

  • The cuticle is there to protect the nail, do not cut them away. Rather use a gentle cuticle remover or cuticle oil and gently push them back. We love the Cuticle MD from Elim. It contains 10 oils to heal, hydrate and protect the cuticle and has a natural SPF. Cutting cuticles will expose the nail and cuticle to dehydrate sooner, so stay away from any cutters.

  • Use a hand cream with an SPF to protect your hands and nails against UV rays. We recommend the Ultra Rich Hand Cream from Elim.

  • Want an easy solution? Elim compiled the #nakedNails program that has everything you need for those breaks in between. It is off course also great for those of us who don’t like wearing colour at all.

Go on and give your nails that well-deserved break.



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