A lot of nail salons offer numerous options like paraffin manicures. From gels to press on nails; French tips to nail art, the choices are lengthy. And, for the most part, all of these options are safe for people with vein disease—as long as the salon is clean, of course.
There is, however, one key exception. If you have varicose veins—those twisted, bulging, highly visible signs of vein disease—you should absolutely avoid paraffin manicures. Now, remember, varicose veins are often a sign of chronic venous insufficiency. As it turns out, about 40 million Americans suffer from this condition. But only 6%-8% of those people seek treatment for the disease. In other words, lots of people are walking around with vein disease, and need to be careful about avoiding paraffin manicures. So let’s take a closer look at the procedure, to help you understand the potential risks to your vein health.
What happens during paraffin manicures?
A paraffin manicure involves paraffin wax—a beeswax and petroleum derivative that has no smell or color. During this manicure, your hands dip into or get painted with several layers of heated wax. Next, your nail tech covers your hand with a plastic glove and a hot towel. Often, but not always, the wax will also contain a mix of essential oils to enhance the experience.
The wax gets peeled away once everything has cooled down, and everything that happens next looks exactly like a regular manicure. For people with healthy veins, paraffin manicures can provide lovely moisture to your dry hands. It can also help you lock in your body’s natural oils to prevent future dryness. And, thanks to the heated component of this treatment, paraffin manicures can help increase blood flow to your hands, alleviating joint pain and stiffness—at least, temporarily. So, why don’t paraffin manicures and varicose veins make a good pair? As it turns out, it’s all about the circulation.
Paraffin Wax and Varicose Veins: a Bad Combination
Paraffin manicures aren’t recommended for people with varicose veins, hypertension or diabetes, because it can impact your circulation, causing you to experience numbness or unusual sensations. Why? When you apply hot wax to certain parts of your body, blood rushes to that area. But that also takes blood away from other areas, like your legs and feet, which already have limited blood flow if you’re living with conditions like chronic venous insufficiency. And because you may not be aware of the side effects of other spa treatments, you should talk to your vein specialist before hitting the salon for any new procedure or treatment.
Hoping to enjoy any manicure on the menu? We’re here to help. We can help you manage your venous insufficiency, improving your blood flow and making it safer for you to enjoy little indulgences like paraffin manicures. All you have to do is reach out to our Houston vein specialists and request an appointment. We can evaluate your current state of vein health, and help you choose the best way forward.