Fungus vs. Pseudomonas
You begin your clients service the same way you always do, when you notice something odd looking around the cuticle area of their nail.
Nail Tech: “What happened here? 💅🏽
Client: “Oh, I had a little lifting on that one so I GLUED it down…”
Nail Tech: 😩😩😩😩😩😩😩😩😩😩😩😩
You know that you will have to remove all the lifted acrylic to properly refill your clients nails when you notice a green discoloration where the lifting occurred! You remove ALL of the acrylic, when you see this!!
This is NOT A FUNGUS!!
The technical term is “PSEUDOMONAS” or a “GREENIE”. It’s a bacteria that has grown under the nail due to moisture, and this case, was probably perpetuated by gluing the nail down and trapping in the moisture. Once the bacteria hits the air, it dies, and the discoloration may remain, but disappears as the nail grows out.
A “FUNGUS” will NOT grow out and can spread to the other nails. When a client has a FUNGUS, you MST refer them to a physician. DO NOT PERFORM THE SERVICE. You run the risk of exposing yourself and your other clients by doing so. Refer them too a doctor.
If your client has a “PSEUDOMONAS/GREENIE” You can treat and continue the service, but first you have to know the difference between a true FUNGUS and a simple “PSEUDOMONAS/GREENIE”.
A TRUE “NAIL FUNGUS”:
“According to Doug Schoon, VP of Science & Technology for Creative Nail Design, the vast majority of infections that occur on nails with no signs of lifting are often caused by the nail tech. For example, if a client touches her nails to her face and the nail plates aren’t re-cleaned the chances of an infection go up tremendously. It’s so important to educate your clients on your procedures to prevent introducing bacteria to the nail plate. Nail techs should also individually clean the nail plates just before applying product. If you get rid of surface moisture and oils (and the bacteria) before product is applied, it will be highly unlikely for your client to get infections. If the client has product lifting and bacteria get under the nails, usually no infections occur, says Schoon. But if the client glues her own lifted nails, the chance of infection increases because there’s no oxygen, giving the bacteria a chance to thrive.” Nails Magazine, February 1, 2005.
What do you do next?
A Pseudomonas is not easily transmitted from person to person in a salon, but, as a precaution, once you use a file on an infected nail, don’t use it on another nail.
Just toss it!!
Don’t attempt to remove the lifted acrylic and keep the unlifted acrylic on the nail to save time. The acrylic is contaminated and you risk spreading the “Greenie”.
Remove the enhancement & lightly buff the discoloration to open up the nail plate cells, and remove all moisture and some of the surface oils. If the stain is very dark, or the nail is “soft”, you might consider leaving product off for a day or two to allow the nail plate to “harden” before applying any product. Instruct the client to keep the plate clean and dry as much as possible.
You can simply wipe the nail with Alcohol before following your normal prep routine OR you can use my FAVORITE product from Tammy ✨Taylor Nails: Fresh Nail✨
After removing the artificial nail, apply Fresh Nail to the affected area with a towelette, or completely submerge the nail for one minute. A new artificial nail can be immediately applied unless the natural nail is soft, which would require a two week waiting period. I would apply Clear Acrylic so that you can monitor the greenie and ensure that it doesn’t grow any larger between appointments. It will take several months for the green stain to grow out with the nail. If it spreads out or does not begin to grow out in three to four weeks, urge your client to visit her doctor.
Educate your clients so they will know why its so important to come to you if they experience lifting and WHY they should not attempt to take care of the problem themselves. (Gluing them down, Taping the nail, etc.)
So the next time your client gets a “GREENIE”, DON'T WORRY!! You’re not dealing with mold or fungus and it can be treated and eventually gotten rid of. Follow my suggestions and let me know how it goes!!