How Do I Choose the Best Manicure Scissors?

Madeleine A.

Choosing the best manicure scissors may depend upon the size of the scissors and how much you're willing to pay for them. Manicure scissors are typically used for trimming the nails and cuticles of adults. They are typically not recommend for use on children because they can cause injury to delicate tissue, so a safer alternative may be a nail clipper.

A manicure done with artificial nails.
A manicure done with artificial nails.

Manicure, or nail scissors can be used at home or when getting a professional manicure. They are typically made of stainless steel with blades that are curved as opposed to straight edged to better conform to the shape of the nail. Also, instead of a scissor-type design, the handle of certain types resemble nail clippers.

Manicure scissors.
Manicure scissors.

Typically, manicure scissors can be found at most grocery stores, drug stores, and beauty supply retailers. In addition, they can be purchased singly, or as a part of an entire manicure kit. Most manicure kits contain, in addition to manicure scissors, a stainless steel nail file, nail clippers, and a tool for pushing back the cuticles. Also, the scissors are usually inexpensive.

Manicure scissors are used to trim the nails and cuticles of adults, not children.
Manicure scissors are used to trim the nails and cuticles of adults, not children.

It is important to note that although manicure scissors are effective in trimming cuticles, the cuticles should never be cut unless they are jagged or otherwise overgrown. In these cases, it may be better to get a manicure from a professional manicurist to reduce the risk of infection or injury. Prior to cutting the cuticles, they should be softened with a cuticle lotion.

Metal orange sticks are used to push the cuticles back.
Metal orange sticks are used to push the cuticles back.

Whether you're using them at home or encountering them in a salon, it is important to use hygienic practices with nail scissors. Tools should be sanitized after each use. Bacteria can grow on the scissors, so sanitizing them with hydrogen peroxide or rubbing alcohol may reduce the risk of infection. In addition, washing the scissors with hot, soapy water can also cut down on contaminants. Salon clients receiving a manicure should not be timid about asking the staff about their sanitation practices, and what steps they take to avoid infections.

Nail scissors should be replaced when the blades begin to dull, or no longer cut effectively. Also, nail scissors are not meant to be used for anything other than cutting nails. For example, they should not be used to cut fabric or paper, because this can damage the cutting edge or even break the scissors. It can also cause the scissors to become dull, increasing the risk of injury.

Along with nail scissors, a manicure kit will often also feature a stainless steel nail file for shaping the nails.
Along with nail scissors, a manicure kit will often also feature a stainless steel nail file for shaping the nails.

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