UV lights used for gel manicures linked to skin cancer risks

Published: Jan. 27, 2023 at 3:40 PM CST
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - A recent national study that links cancer-causing DNA damage to gel manicures is gaining attention from those who regularly get their nails done.

The UV lights used to cure the polish are shown to be associated with DNA damage and mutations that cause cancer.

Dr. Lauren Kole, who is an assistant professor of dermatology, said different case studies have shown similar findings. She said patients with strong exposure to these UV lights have an increased risk or have multiple skin cancers on their hands or around their nails.

To reduce the risk, she recommends wearing a high SPF sunscreen on your hands to the salon or cutting the fingertips off of specialist gloves.

“If you’re still leaving your nails exposed, you’re not completely eliminating the risk but you still can feel more comfortable continuing to have manicures,” said Dr. Kole.

If you are concerned that you are at risk for skin cancer, Dr. Kole recommends scheduling a full body check-up with a dermatologist.

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