Sunday, September 6, 2015

Proper File Grit for Prepping

Lets talk about the proper grit to use on the natural nail when prepping the natural nail before an enhancement service. Yes this will be LONG!
When prepping a nail, nail technicians should only remove the shine caused by oil on the surface. If the nail plate is visibly thinner after removing nail enhancements, it is due to overly aggressive abrasives or filing techniques before the enhancement application or during a re-balance service.
Ideally nothing harsher and a 180-240 grit file should be used on the natural nail. EVER. Yes I am aware that there are companies that insist that a 100 grit file needs to be used on the natural nail to "etch" the nail. To me that says the company is either not using the latest technology ("old school" products wouldn't stick to the nail without etching) or the company is not up to date on the industry standards. 
Using a 100 grit file on the natural nail WILL damage it. Period. It might be micro-scratches, but they are scratches that weren't there before. If a product truly does not work without damaging the natural nail, I encourage you to look into other products. Here is  some great info on nail structure from (you guessed it) Doug Schoon. Also, read the quote from him below - it is so true!

Wise Words From Doug Schoon
"Let's clear something up! It's not just nail bars or non-standard salons that are damaging client's nails. I've been in high end salons and watched nail technicians over file the nail plate. I've seen top educators for major companies, over file the nail plates. Go to a trade show and watch the nail demos, and you'll see this happen all the time. Some manufacturers video demonstrate techniques that encourage over filing the nail plate. This is all too common problem in our industry. I'd venture to guess that a significant percentage of all nail techs around the world are prone to using overly aggressive filing techniques. And I guess that many of you reading this post, also over file the nail plate.
"As an industry, we got to move past blaming non-standard salons and begin to realize this is a COMMON problem in the nail industry, which means huge number of nail techs (if not most nail techs) are improperly filing and/or removing nail coatings. Sure, things were much worse in the 80s and 90s and this industry has made great strides in the last ten years. Still, the nail industry has a long way to go. Blaming some nail techs for what many nail techs regularly do will NOT solve this common problem.
"The solutions start with each of you. Nail techs should NOT be removing layers of the natural nail and when coatings are removed- there should be no nail damage. Responsible companies should NOT be teaching potentially damaging techniques which encourage over filing of the nail plate. If your client's nails show signs of nail damage, you need to look at your own techniques and not blame the products. Most of this nail damage is the caused by the nail professional, not the products."