Nails are frequently used for fashion and beauty. They can represent someone’s personality
However, 18-year old scientists Ashleigh Fraser and Leah Guskjolen, discovered that under those shiny nails are actually many bacterial colonies thriving.
While the 2 girls were at their training to become Certified Nursing Assistants, they were told not to wear any nail polish or artificial nails. Not stopping there, the girls probed the issue deeper.
Ashleigh and Leah borrowed materials from the hospital where they had trained as nursing assistants. Ten nurses agreed to give them little scraps off the top side of their nails. Half of the participants had natural nails. The other half wore nail polish/artificial nails on top of their natural nails. The teens grew bacteria from the scrapings on agar plates.
Natural nails grew an average of 4.3 bacterial colonies. However, scrapings from nail polish/artificial nails grew an average of 17.5 colonies. The results showed that polished/artificial nails are not allowed because they produce about 4 times more bacteria then the natural nails. Those germs could easily pass on to sick patients.
Nurses usually wear gloves, but small tasks like preparing a document are conducted bare-handed. The girls hope to raise awareness to hospitals around the country. They also agree that the nurses wouldn’t want to scrub their hands hard because they could rub off their pricey manicures.
Though manicures are pretty and provide a sense of beauty and fashion, it is best for a health professional to pass and concede that manicures are not “worth it”.