There are definitely pros and cons to getting acrylic nails. On the one hand, the technique leaves you with an Instagram-worthy manicure that won’t chip off or flake the way that regular polish does. On the other hand, they typically can’t be removed without another visit to the salon, making your nails a bit more high maintenance than a regular manicure. (And, FYI, there are some studies that suggest acrylic nails aren’t really all that great for your health.)
However, when it comes to acrylic nail removal, taking the time to go back to the salon is a really important step — as one woman learned the absolute hardest way possible. Cherie Newman, a 33-year-old mother of four, tried to remove her acrylics by herself after leaving them on for four weeks, according to Yahoo! Lifestyle. Unfortunately, when Newman started the process using nail remover, she accidentally ripped off her real thumbnail along with the acrylic material. Ouch.
The story gets a lot worse from there, I am sad to say. Newman told Yahoo! Lifestyle that she “didn’t think anything of the cut” at the time, but a month later, the tip of her thumb had turned purple due to sepsis. For the uninitiated, sepsis is a life-threatening complication of an infection, and in some cases could be fatal. After being seen at the hospital, she was diagnosed with septicemia, which is a serious infection of the bloodstream, and she was told she needed to have the top of her thumb amputated.
According to Newman, she had to have her “thumb sliced open to properly wash out the infection.” But then, the 33-year-old got a second infection, resulting in yet another operation. “I was shocked,” she said, “but I was told it was either that or my [entire] thumb would be removed.” Yahoo! Lifestyle reports that Newman spent five months recovering from the injury, but, surprisingly, she hasn’t given up her acrylic nail habit for good. (Warning: Graphic image below.)
It’s worth noting that the American Academy of Dermatology advises against the use of acrylics. Instead, the AAD recommends that people select soak-off gel polish, or reserving acrylics for “special occasions” if you really can’t get enough of the look.
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