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The Geek

Grand Master Geek
Premium Geek
Jan 9, 2003
Reaction score
Leeds, UK
One of the most frustrating and unfulfilling dilemmas that nail geeks face during rebalancing is one of curling.

You can’t even get kudos for using the word as it isn’t even one of those fancy-pants Latin ones like ‘pterygium’. In a flash of blazin’ glory (to sound cool)… I now refer to the problem where the natural nail begins to pull away from the free edge… insert drum roll here... Curlingonysuckus.

What causes it? What can I do to get rid of it? Will it make me a better lover?

The Culprits

There are really two key culprits that cause curling… er… I mean Curlingonysuckus…
  • Plate dehydration
  • Adhesion erosion
Plate dehydration

When the natural nail plate is still attached to the bed, oil and moisture continually move through the plate, keeping it sealed with your own body’s goodness. When the natural nail plate leaves the bed and becomes the free edge, the plate dries out as it no longer receives moisture and oil.
When that happens, the plate compresses and (depending somewhat on the structure of the plate) it curls up.

Super crappy analogy time:

The nail plate is similar to a sponge (All porous and stuff).
If you take a sponge and drop it in the sink, it absorbs dirty dish water and swells up.
If you then take it out of the sink and set it on the counter, it slowly dries out and shrinks (it also leaves a really funky smell behind).

In the water -> it sucks
out o the water -> it spits

Back to the natural nail. This sucking and spitting situation can play havoc on the natural nail plate.
When you soak your plates in water, they suck (swell)... take em out... they spit (compress).

What to do? Your best solution is to use plenty of light grade cuticles oils like Solar Oil to keep the nail plate sealed so it can’t suck and spit.

Adhesion Erosion

The other common reason behind Curlingonysuckus is when the bond between the natural nail plate and your coating starts to erode.
The most frequent reason for this is adhesive breakdown.

Adhesive and resins (cyanoacrylates) naturally form really great bonds to the Keratin in the natural nail but because Cyanoacrylates are linear polymers, over time they have a tendency to break down in solvents and water. When this happens, you may get Curlingonysuckus.

The solution?

For clients who are in a lot of solvents or water, a great way to prevent the problem is to sculpt the enhancement instead of performing a tip and an overlay.
Sculpting will bypass the use of the adhesive and allow for optimum bonding with the natural nail plate.
  • Always minimise the amount of adhesive you use in your application.
  • Always trim excess or unnecessary contact area from the tip.
  • Do not perform tip and overlays on mermaids (they are lousy tippers anyway).
Banishing Curlingonywhatever

If your client returns to you with Curlingonysuckus, file away any area that is not attached, re-prep and reapply product to separated area.

When re-applying, carefully ‘wrap’ edges of the natural nail with the product to ‘clamp’ the nail in place. That way, as the product cures, it doesn’t shrink away from the edge.
Just marking this:biggrin:
This is great have such a way with words. Thank you for posting! :hug:
But i thought mermaids wear contra indicated anyway on account of there fish fingers?!?
But i thought mermaids wear contra indicated anyway on account of there fish fingers?!?

Lol mizzy but they can have fish pedicures :wink:
This is such a fantastic tutorial.
:)Marking this for future reads and use
Old article but a really helpful read :biggrin:
This has helped me alot, thanks xx

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