There’s something so dang satisfying about having perfectly trimmed and polished nails. But if you’re trying to save a few bucks or have noticed that your mani is constantly chipping, you might need to take a little break. Here, seven things that could happen if you ditch the polish.
1. Your nails will probably get stronger.
Polish, while full of chemicals, is pretty harmless on its own. Polish remover, on the other hand, is packed with strong solvents that are extremely drying to your nails and surrounding skin. And since you can’t get a manicure without removing old polish first, you’re constantly subjecting your nails to dryness, which leads to peeling, which leads to breaking.
2. Your nails will definitely look brighter.
Just as wine and coffee leave your teeth yellow, polish can give nails a jaundiced look with continued use. Take a break and let them get back to their healthy, naturally pinkish hue.
3. And your nails will feel smoother.
Science lesson: Nails are made up of layers of dead keratin. (Imagine the shingles of your roof.) When you strip off polish with remover, you’re taking superficial layers of the nail with it, which can cause white spots and roughness. Keep nails au naturel and those uneven patches will grow out with time.
4. But you’ll probably need to keep them extra hydrated.
With no color to distract from the dryness that is now your naked nails, you’ll want to keep them super hydrated. Keep cuticle oil nearby and apply two to three times per day.
5. You’ll reduce your chances of getting sick.
From not soaking tools long enough to substituting disinfectants for cheaper ones, there are many ways bacteria–both viral and fungal–can be transmitted at a salon (even the fancy ones). Not to mention that those tools and brushes are being used on everyone who enters–even Sicky Mccoughy to your left.
6. And you’ll finally have money for a rainy day fund.
At ten dollars a pop–not including tip–and weekly maintenance, that “cheapie” manicure adds up to a hefty sum by the end of the year (more than $3,000!). That could fund a trip to Thailand. Or buy that purse. Or go into your 401(k).
7. You’ll have to learn to love your naked nails.
Smooth, bright, strong and cheap aside–you’re also parting with that limited edition Essie polish. And the compliments that always ensue. (Even if only temporarily.) Just remember health…and Thailand. Happiness comes in many forms, after all.