Phil and the Jaws of destruction


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The Geek

Grand Master Geek
Premium Geek
Jan 9, 2003
Reaction score
Leeds, UK
One fine day in “Phils lift n nip” nail salon, Bertha arrived for her 4:15 Tuesday appointment where Phil himself was there to greet her.
“Hey Bertha have a seat” Phil exclaimed in his usually cheerful voice. A voice that then suddenly turned sour as his eyes popped and little tiny veins jumped to attention upon his Botoxed forehead. “Holy cow Bertha. What the hell happened to your nails? Another bar fight? Did you take up Mud wrestling as a hobby over the past two weeks? They look like poop.” Phil pauses long enough to consider a chilling connection. “Bertha, come to think of it they look just like the rest of my clients nails. Its a conspiracy! Get Oliver Stone on the phone. All you guys are out to get me.”
“Sorry Phil,” Bertha started slowly shaking her head in dismay. “I was taking a shower the day after you did them and they just started to lift and pop off.” Bertha continued. “Maybe they are just too thick.”
“Scuse me? Since when did you become Doug Schoon? The thicker they are, the stronger they are.” Phil said defiantly (and rather stupidly). Just then Phil spied the clock above the door; “Lets just get started so I can finish before your next appointment in two weeks”.

Phil then proceeded to take out his trusty jaws of destruction (AKA acrylic nippers) and began to nip away the lifting that oh so frequently accompanied Berthas appointments.
Soon the salon became transformed into a scene from “Saving Private Ryan”. Shards of product whistling and whizzing by, bouncing off lamps, clients, and other assorted fine goods as screams come hither and thither from various corners of the salon as other tormentors (read: Nippin Nail technicians) also begin to pry product off from their victims nail plates. What Phil and the rest of the Spanish Inquisition are not aware of is how they are creating the problems they are trying to fix.

Jaws of destruction

As the Jaws of destruction come at that tiny ledge of lifted product, tremendous pressure is applied to the enhancement. When a technician begins to nip, tremendous pressure starts to be applied to the enhancement and millions of polymer chains begin to snap away from each other at an astonishingly rapid rate. Wherever this snap takes place, you have a crack. These cracks begin racing through the product at lightning fast speeds, each linking up with one another like tiny streams trickling together to form a river until a full circuit of cracks is completed. At that point, a chunk of product breaks off and in its anger, it takes a chunk of nail plate with it.

When nippers are used to pry product off, the prying motion uses the lifted edge as a lever. Under the force of this leverage, the product not only becomes shattered, but the integrity of the natural nail is torn apart. Don’t take the Geeks word for it, check one of the recently ejected pieces and you too will scream “HOLY MUTHA O MISSISSIPPI!! THERES STILL NAIL PLATE ATTACHED TO IT!!”

This antiquated method of removing lifting quickly thins out an otherwise healthy natural nail plate. The real kicker comes when you also realise that not only are you making the existing product substantially weaker, your damaging the nail plate. A thinner, more damaged nail plate is much more likely to experience further cracking, breaking, and lifting.

A lovely side effect of using nippers to remove lifting is that you are guaranteed to give your client a "Fill Line".
Fill lines led Phil to continue nipping, chasing that little bit of lifting until he either got too damn tired of chasing it, and gave up, or he had ripped the rest of the product (not to mention the natural nail plate) off.

Sure, Phil could do as many techs do (i.e. leave them there and claim that it’s a new nail art technique or use adhesive based fill line removers) but those techniques can promote weakness and even bacterial infections.

The only safe and effective way to remove lifting and fill lines is by blending up to the affected area until the product that is not attached simply flakes away. This can be a difficult chore if the product you are working on has been previously maintained using nippers as the enhancement will usually resemble a door stop as opposed to a nail enhancement. But you must persevere because technicians that need to nip lifted product away… nip it away because they are nipping in the first place!

In a business where we are paid to beautify and protect our clients natural nail plates, nipping lifted product is an antiquated technique that is more terrifying than the prospect of waking up to a morning of CD:UK with a severe hangover.
Excellent Article!
I so wish I had read this article months ago. A new client of mine had been going on about her last Nail Tech in the US and how she never used a file when rebalancing, she used a nipper and oh how much faster she was......... I was somewhat confused:confused: of this procedure as I'd never heard of such thing. I tried to explain to her that I was looking after her natural nails but she wouldn't listen and arrived at the next appointment having done a DIY job on them herself:cry: !!

I would have printed this off for proof!

So Thank you for the TRUTH!!:D
I can say when I was taught to do "nails"... I was told to cut back all the lifting with the jaws... Makes me wonder what else they never told me... I was basically just given enough info to pass my boards. This site rocks... Thanks for the info!!!!
I really enjoyed reading that...was like a anyway...i have had clients with some lifting who while i am filing it away gently gently have said "just give me that orange stick and i'll pull it off for ya" they just dont understand that whilst it looks like i am being namby pamby with my file i am actually looking after there nails. They dont see that you cant just pick that bit off....although they do it at home !!!! i have explained why i am being so gentle and they have said..."it dont hurt just give it some welly" I will stick to doing it my way everytime but with clients making you feel under pressure to just get it off and get on with it I wonder just how many nail techs give in...? Just my thoughts...great reading GMG xxx
I must say I have a lady who always pressures me to nip off the product!! I never do though.... she says she would have had to just pick it or prise it off by now, couldn't be filing it off when it would nip off so easily! I think it's what they are used to sometimes..
Good story couldn't have put it better myself how many nail tech's out there actually do this sordid affair I wonder! Not mentioning any name's or salons but it might be the people who also use electric files incorrectly not that I would ever use an electric file anyway!! Should be loads of law suits going on by now but most of the clients are badly nieve (if I've spelt that right!)To the consiquencys to electric files, using cuticle nippers on infills, industrial acrylic!!! Say no more. I think I should spellings getting worse. Brill article its a good thing we see the funny side, eh. Alisonx
I HATE nippers! Spent a long time trying to understand why when i tried to nip away lifting, I caused more flippin lifting & damage :mad: !
Down with the Jaws of destruction!
Great parable lol. Same here, I've had several clients express surprise that I'd file down the excess instead of just ripping them off and get very impatient with the time it takes...

...and then marvel with joy over how "Wow, I'm not bleeding!" :Scared:

Some never get over it though. I still get too many pointed comments like "Um, aren't you going to soak them??" Sigh...

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