Some people who know me are aware that I get my nails done on a regular basis. In fact, this has been the butt of many jokes. ‘Oh look, how gay is that?’. Yadda yadda yadda. The comments became so common that I started to pre-empt and take the mickey out of myself before anyone else can.
However, not everyone really knows the reason why I get them done. It’s not out of vanity or because ‘I’m a gay’. The fact is, I get them done to help with a medical condition. Well, more one of the side effects.
I suffer from anxiety (and depression), for as long as I can remember. One of my ways to try and deal with my anxiety, like many other people, is to bite my nails. My chronic biting was so bad that I hardly had any left. I even started biting the skin around the nail bed, and it would be common for them to bleed. No matter how much pain I was in, I couldn’t stop biting. I have tried everything to stop, including that disgusting varnish, but I just licked it off and carried on biting away.
A few years back, being conscious of the state of my hands, I wanted to see if there was anything that could be done before getting married. I knew that there would be close up pictures of my hands, and I didn’t want them to be photographed looking like they did. My mum suggested that I get my nails done.
The thought of having falsies didn’t really appeal to me. It isn’t exactly something that men are supposed to do, plus I was a little dubious that this would actually work. Although, I thought ‘what have I got to lose’ and decided to go along, and I was actually really surprised with the end result.
For the record, when I say I have fake nails, I don’t have these talons making it impossible to do things. I just have a gel overlay over the top of my natural nail, which makes them thicker and harder to bite. This allows them to grow to a reasonable length, that I am happy with.
In fact, having your nails done for non-beautification reasons, is actually a lot more common than you’d think. I’ve heard many stories where men and women have them done to help resolve/hide a medical condition. In fact, I’ve had a few guys (gay and straight) asking questions about having mine done because they’re thinking about it doing it too for similar reasons. The biggest fear/hold back is going to a salon, and having passersby looking into the shop and see what you’re getting done. This was a major issue for me, but it doesn’t bother me now. Although, there is nothing stopping you getting a mobile technician come to your home to do your nails. It’s more discreet, and it gets rid of this fear/embarrassment.
The effects of getting my nails done
I have got mine done for several years now, and they are 100% better than they have ever been. I’ve even had people approach me saying how they like them, which is kind of weird. The most bizarre situation was when I was on the tram, a lady tapped me on the shoulder and said that she just wanted to tell me that I had lovely nails. For someone who has hidden his hands, because of the state of them, to get compliments just seems a little awkward but nice at the same time.
Having my nails done hasn’t resolved the biting. I still go to bite them, but as they are thicker and harder to bite without breaking a tooth, I am now more conscious of what I’m doing and can stop myself.
Additionally, as I’m not biting them, I have seen a huge difference in my real nails. They’re stronger and less brittle than they were before. And while there have been physical improvements, mentally I have seen a few changes too. It’s small things, but I don’t feel like I need to hide my hands from people anymore.
However, there is one disadvantage about getting your nails done. The clear polish they use has a fascinating look when under UV lights! 😆