Nail Myths & Truths

Nail Myths & Truths

Nail Myths & Truths

So what’s the real story? Should you push or cut your cuticles? Is nail biting dangerous or not? Is nail polish safe or toxic? Separating the facts from the fiction is tricky, with so many beauty related rumors running amok. Here, for truth's sake, our KISS nail experts debunk the common myths about nails.

Myth: White spots in your nails signify a calcium deficiency.

Truth: This is one of the oldest myths “in the book”. White spots are most likely little nicks or air bubbles in the nail bed, caused by trauma to the nail. We’re not sure where the misconceptions started, but dermatologists report that white spots are common, harmless and do not mirror your overall health.

Myth: It’s safe to cut your cuticles

Truth: Cuticles are actually a barrier that seals the skin from moisture and germs and protects your nails from bacteria and potential infections, so don’t mess with them. Rest assured, your cuticles will not grow wild if you don’t cut them. In fact, trimming your cuticles actually encourages them to grow back faster and thicker, as one of nature’s protective measures. It’s much healthier to keep your cuticles intact by softening them with cuticle cream, then nudging them back with a manicure stick. Next time a manicurist asks if you want your cuticles cut, say NO.

Myth: Adding nail polish remover to clumpy nail polish will restore the consistency

Truth: Most removers contain acetone, which, when mixed with nail polish, is likely to ruin the consistency. If you need to thin out thick nail polish, you can buy a nail polish thinner on for $5 to $10, but if the nail polish is really old or almost used up, it’s probably not worth the investment.

Myth: Nail polish is toxic

Truth: The thinking used to be that chemicals don’t permeate the outer layer of your nails, but it is not clear what gets absorbed through the nail bed. And some ingredients, like formaldehyde, are known toxins. Today, more and more nail polish is formulated without ingredients that are known to be toxic, and they are identifiable with a product claim such as 3-free, 5-free and even 7-free. The 3 most important ingredients to avoid (known as the toxic trio) are the chemicals dibutyl phthalate (DBP), toluene, and formaldehyde. Nail polish that is 3-free does not contain these offenders. To learn more about safe and unsafe ingredients, visit

Myth:  Eating gelatin makes your makes your nails stronger

Truth: Nails are made of keratin, a protein also found in gelatin, but there’s no evidence that eating gelatin will strengthen nails. There is more promising research about biotin as a supplement that improves weak nails, but there is no scientific evidence.

Myth: Nail biting is a habit that’s not all that bad.

Truth: Sticking your nails in your mouth is simply not sanitary, and biting your nails and/or cuticles exposes you to bacteria including E. coli and Salmonella; both are potentially life threatening and easily transferred from your mouth to your fingertips, and vice versa.

Now that we’ve cleared up the misconceptions, you can focus on growing healthy, beautiful nails. And if there was only a true way to keep nails from chipping or breaking, that would be awesome! Until we find one, you can get long, strong looking nails in minutes with imPRESS Press-on Manicure!