Researchers Examine UV Nail Salon Lamps and Risk of Skin Cancer


A recent research letter in JAMA Dermatology stated that although using higher-wattage ultra violet (UV) lamps at nail salons to dry and cure polish was associated with more UV-A radiation being emitted, the brief exposure after a manicure would require multiple visits for potential DNA damage and the risk for cancer remains small.

Lyndsay R. Shipp, MD, of Georgia Regents University, Augusta, and colleagues tested 17 light units from 16 salons with a wide range of bulbs, wattage, and irradiance emitted by each device for their research letter.

Results showed that high-wattage light sources were correlated with higher UV-A irradiance emitted. However, the researchers noted, “Our data suggest that, even with numerous exposures, the risk for carcinogensis, remains small. That said, we concur with previous authors in recommending use of physical blocking sunscreens or UV-A protective gloves to limit the risk of carcinogenesis and photoaging.”

(JAMA Dermatology. Published online April 30, 2014. doi:10.1001/jamadermatol.2013.8740.)

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