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DIY Gel Manicures May Harm Your Health

DIY Gel Manicures May Harm Your Health

A fresh set from the comfort of your own home? DIY gel nails have been all the rage on social media, but the practice could cause you to develop a life-changing allergy. In a TikTok video, creator @alina.gene describes developing an acrylate allergy from doing gel nails at home. Now, when exposed to acrylates, the creator feels severe pain. 

The creator warns viewers not to self-apply nail polish that requires a UV light to cure. In later videos, @alina.gene explains that at-home use differs from in-salon use because salon professionals have access to higher-quality chemicals that are less likely to cause reactions and that they also have proper training on how to safely apply the products.

“I know I sound real dramatic because an allergy to gel nails or even an allergy to acrylates isn’t going to kill you, but the thing is, in the wrong situation it could prevent you from getting lifesaving medical care,” said @alina.gene in another video. Common medical products contain acrylates, and developing this allergy can cause major issues in obtaining future medical care.

We asked an allergist to walk us through this viral video. 

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This article was produced by KFF Health News, a national newsroom that produces in-depth journalism about health issues and is one of the core operating programs at KFF — the independent source for health policy research, polling, and journalism.