The science behind nail cuticle oil is as intriguing as it is essential for maintaining healthy, beautiful nails. This seemingly simple product plays a crucial role in nail & hand care routines, and its effectiveness goes beyond its pleasant scent and moisturizing properties. Let’s delve into the fascinating science behind nail & skin oil.
Nail Cuticle & Skin Oil and Hydration
At its core, nail oil is all about hydration. The skin surrounding your nails, including the nail bed, is much more important than you might think. It acts as a natural barrier, preventing bacteria and other foreign invaders from infiltrating your nails’ matrix, the place where nail growth originates. The 4 Guardian Seals (cuticle (non-living tissue), 2 lateral nail folds and the hyponychium) are the most, but not the only important skin barrier in and around the nail unit.
The Science: Skin and nails require moisture to maintain their health and integrity. Dehydrated skin is more prone to splitting which creates microscopic openings for opportunistic pathogens but also to sunburn and other forms of UV damage. Hydration can help protect your skin from the sun’s harmful rays and possible negative effects of the UV LED lights that we use when curing our artificial nail products.
Its also important to recognise that we all have our own set of unique microbiomes and that we meet transient microbiomes in and from other people around us, these amazing microbiomes are part of our protection, our skin & nails are their living environment, and it also needs to be protected so they can protect us.
Nail & Skin oil typically contains a blend of nourishing oils like jojoba, almond, and avocado but can also contain ingredients such as y-Tocopherol (a natural non synthetic form of vitamin E). These oils are rich in essential fatty acids that not only penetrate the nail plate & skin but also provide a protective layer sealing in moisture and preventing dehydration that can lead to brittle nails and unsightly hangnails. Avoid nail & skin oils with synthetic preservatives, scents or colouring.
The science here is simple yet effective: Preventing Trans Epidermal Water Loss is the key hydrated nails & skin mean healthier nails & skin. Healthy skin and nails can defend against invasive microorganisms.
Stimulating Blood Circulation
One of the intriguing aspects of a good quality nail & skin oil is its ability to penetrate the nail plate, helping the bed epithelium (also non-living tissue) to remain flexible, ensuring proper transport of the nail plate along the nail bed but also helping to keep our very special nail beds in optimal condition. It’s important to remember that the nail bed has to reabsorb the old skin cells as they cannot sloth off, this makes the nail bed react quickly when all is not as it should be causing nasty problems such as hyperkeratosis which can also be painful.
The Science: When you massage nail & skin oil into your nails and skin, you’re not only delivering nourishing ingredients but also stimulating blood circulation. Improved blood flow means more nutrients and oxygen reaching the nail matrix, where new nail cells are formed. This enhanced circulation can help nail growth and make your nails appear healthier and more vibrant. It’s like giving your nails a mini spa treatment, all thanks to the science behind the oil.
Protection from Environmental Stressors
Our nails face numerous challenges in their daily lives, from exposure to harsh chemicals to the wear and tear of everyday activities. Nail & skin oil acts as a protective shield, guarding your nails against these external stressors.
The Science: The oils and ingredients in oil form a barrier just below the surface of your skin and penetrates your nails, shielding them from environmental pollutants, water, and chemicals found in cleaning products. Think of it as a protective force field for your nails, helping to prevent the penetration of water, damage and breakage. This protection is an essential aspect of nail care that often goes unnoticed but is crucial for maintaining strong, beautiful nails, but especially nails that are crowned with gorgeous artificial nail products or your favourite nail polish.
Flexibility and Preventing Breakage
Nails need to be flexible to withstand daily activities without snapping like a brittle twig. Nail Cuticle Oil contributes to the flexibility and resilience of your nails, reducing the risk of breakage.
The Science: A good quality oil can penetrates the nail plates, making them more flexible and less prone to splitting or breaking. Imagine it as giving your nails a strengthening workout, helping them bend without breaking.
Enhancing Nail Polish Adhesion
Just as a base coat is essential for proper nail polish adhesion, oil plays a role in ensuring your manicure lasts longer. Your well-hydrated nails will provide a better surface for nail polish application, leading to smoother and more durable results.
The Science: When you apply nail polish or your favourite artificial nail product on hydrated nails, it adheres better and spreads evenly. This means fewer streaks and chips in your manicure. Oil’s moisturizing properties create an ideal foundation for your nail polish or artificial nail products, enhancing their longevity. It’s like providing a smooth, moisturized canvas for a masterpiece.
Don’t forget to wash your hands first and to use a good quality nail plate cleanser that removes surface minerals that can affect adhesion but also ingredients that remove surface oils and other fluids so that your product of choice adheres well.
Tip: After soaking off your artificial nails or removing nail polish with nail polish remover your nails and skin will look dry because acetone or other solvents in the remover have broken down or removed your product, a dose of oil here now will help replenish any lost moisture and or oil in your nails and your skin.
Nurturing Beauty and Strength
The science behind nail & skin oil involves a harmonious blend of hydration, protection, stimulation, and strengthening. This unassuming product packs a punch when it comes to nail & skin care, working behind the scenes to keep your nails healthy, flexible, and beautiful. So, the next time you indulge in a relaxing oil massage, remember that you’re not just pampering your nails; you’re embracing the science that keeps them in top-notch condition. Your nails will thank you with strength, resilience, and a stunning appearance that lasts.