Question: Do LED or UV lamps at nail salons increase the risk of skin cancer?

Question: Do LED or UV lamps at nail salons increase the risk of skin cancer?

Like tanning beds, the light boxes used in a traditional nail salon setting has brought some concern to nail salon goers. Nail boxes, like tanning beds, also emit UV radiation which can increase the risk of cancer. A study in 2014, did reach a few conclusions.

  1. The amount of radiation that is delivered via these nail salon devices varies widely.
  2. The amount of radiation delivered during a nail drying session can vary based on hand position.

Both LED and UV lamps emit radiation so it doesn't matter which type of device your use. Don't let this scare you away from visiting nail however because that study also stated that it would take multiple UV drying sessions to deliver enough radiation to cause DNA damage. Getting a manicure every two week is still well below the threshold. Still concerned about the UV exposure? Apply sunscreen to your hands before placing them in the device. This can give you peace of mind that you are blocking those potentially harmful rays.

Source: Shipp, L. R. (2014, July 01). Risk of Skin Cancer and Use of UV Nail Lamps. Retrieved from

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