By Mary N. DiZazzo

Natural Nailcare

Ciao bella,

Certainly, not a fingernail that's been "enhanced" with acrylic or gel. They call them enhancements, as they are only a temporary illusion. It is not a service that protects the health of the natural nail.

The damage inflicted on a natural nail from acrylic or gel may become permanent and take up to a year or more to grow out. Of course, they're cheap (the germs are free and you get what you pay for!) and in Massachusetts they look like nickels on the nails. Silk wraps, with or without tips, are the healthier alternative -- very natural looking with assurance of maintaining your nail underneath.

Professional natural nailcare is a unique and sensible method to treat your digits. A very good manicurist can aid you in your journey to healthy, happy natural nails.

You start out with a weekly service. Invest in some professional products such as nail strengthener, cuticle oil, and a good hand cream.

You have now started to maintain natural nails. Use strengthener everyday and massage in your cuticle oil. Massage by your manicurist or by you helps to circulate blood, stimulating nail growth. A professional manicure is a must.

Products I highly recommend:

  • Nail-Tek nail hardener -- I is for maintenance, II is for peeling soft nails, III is for dry or brittle nails, and X-tra is used when acrylic or gel has been removed and nails are extremely weak; follow instructions for all types--;

  • Qutica or Cuccio cuticle oil is used to keep in moisture and maintain tamed cuticles;

  • Cuccio body butters dry like velvet and release moisture to keep skin soft all day -- new scents are pomegranate and fig and unscented.

    Natural nailcare is healthy and the way to go.

    Buona giornata and God bless the United States of America!

    Have you missed any of Mary's columns in the Post-Gazette? Read prior weeks' "All That Zazz" columns on her website She is a third-generation cosmetologist and owner of Mary for Nails, etc. natural nailcare salon in Andover, and a Massachusetts distributor of Kosmea brand rose hip oil products. She may be contacted at (978) 470-8183. She also sees select clients by appointment in Boston at (617) 742-6881.