To cut or not to cut cuticles? That is the question. This question always seems to divide the MUA nail boards and raises up a storm of answers.
I feel like one day we might battle .... the cutter's in one corner, ready to slice em and the non-cutters in the other corner ready to spray with cuticle remover. How can we end this controversy??!! Dare I say it ... I think I have an answer to make both parties happy ... but, it's not a short one.
I think there is a lot of misinformation or misunderstanding out there. The bottom line is, the normal person either doesn't know or understand nail anatomy and wrongly identifies the "cuticle". So lets all get on the same page. The graphic below shows some nail parts. We only need to concentrate on a couple terms at the moment.
Warning: Google image eponychium at your own risk ... it's mega gross!
With that said, it is completely safe to remove the dead cuticle (true cuticle). Notice I said "remove" and not cut. You should choose which ever method you are most comfortable with.
It's no fun unless we have real pictures of fingers so, lets take a look of what to expect on your own fingers.
My husband was nice enough to be provide his nasty fingers for today's viewing. Yes, I said nasty. He won't let me fix them, so the consequence is of course name calling.
The top image shows just the fingers and the bottom has all the parts labeled. Look at the finger on the top left, I have slightly pushed back the true cuticle so you can see it (clearly more crusty white). If you look very carefully to the finger on your top right you may just be able to see the true cuticle. The true cuticle can be pushed back all the way to the eponychium, removing it thereafter can be done by trimming or with a cuticle remover.
Do your own research online and check out your own fingers. If you are unsure about what is what, go to a reputable manicurist and get a manicure. (I stress reputable!) I am sure they would be willing to show you where your cuticle is since this is what they learned in school.
A couple of points I want to make:
1. Cutting the true cuticle is fine as long as you are confident in what you are trimming off.
2. Cutting the eponychium (or any live skin) can lead to infection, not to mention ragged cuticles.
3. Not everyone needs to cut their cuticles, this depends on what they have going on down there. Sometimes a cuticle remover is all that is necessary.
3. Simply pushing back the true cuticles would be a good start. AND don't forget to moisturize!
I will eventually post how to remove cuticles both by cutting/trimming and with a cuticle remover. Stay tuned!
Post about using cuticle remover can be found here.
My final words of caution .... Be careful before you start cutting away or you may end up like some of those Google images for eponychium .... gross!