HEALTH-Big beauty trend comes with risk

Community Health May 23, 2014 at 2:59 pm

HEALTH-NAILSBy Dr. George I. Traitses

The latest manicure trend is long-lasting gel nail polish, which stays on hands for 2-3 weeks longer than what has been the “industry standard” polish. Yet while many women may hail it as the answer to their nail-maintenance woes, the gel treatment is not risk free. The ultraviolet light technicians use to dry it can cause skin cancer, and women should wear sunscreen and sunglasses to protect themselves.

In a report published recently by the medical journal JAMA Dermatology, Dr. Lyndsay Shipp, dermatologist at Georgia Regents University, measured the amount of UV emitted from nail dryers in 16 different salons. Shipp concluded that the skin cancer risk from repeated salon visits remained low, as the UV amounts were small, though they varied between salons. Yet “the problem is there’s no regulation of nail lamp exposure,” says Dr. Chris Adigun, a clinical assistant professor of dermatology at NYU Langone Medical Center. He added: “For patients who aren’t concerned about the melanoma risk, do know about the photoaging that comes from UV exposure.”

Exposure is definitely an issue for nail salon employees, who spend hours at a time in UV-exposed areas. Eye damage is another concern: UV exposure is the main cause of cataracts, which is a leading cause of blindness in the elderly.

Source: “Love That Gel Nail Polish, But Know It Doesn’t Come Risk-Free,” by Nancy Shute,, May 1, 2014.

For more information on health and safety visit the Ontario Chiropractic Association, a voluntary professional association whose mission is to serve our members and the public by advancing the understanding and use of chiropractic care. or call 1877-327-2273; Dr. George Traitses, 416-499-5656,