Acrylic Nails: Professional do or don’t?

I remember the first time I was judged in the workplace by my appearance. I had just started my “big girl” job after college and a woman had a lot to say about my acrylic nails. “How do you even type with those things?” she inquired. “I could never do that and work”, she persisted. I wanted to say “Yes, YOU can’t do that, but me? Watch me work”, but, you know, workplace decorum is real and I was positive my mom would kick me out if I got fired after two weeks over a mean girl. So, I let my work speak for itself, as always. I became one of the top performers at my job month after month. Each month rocking coffin nails and a new color. My coworker, on the other hand, kept watching and asking how I get it done.

 Call me naive or just a peace-loving spirit, but I don’t think the slight shade my coworker threw was malicious. Acrylic nails have always been a workplace issue. Many healthcare jobs require acrylic nails to be a certain length. Other jobs won’t let you have them at all. But when it comes to corporate, is there a fine line you can cross with acrylic nails?

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How I looked to my coworker, apparently.

  For the most part, corporate companies seem to be fine with acrylic nails, as long as they’re not hazardous or a health concern. This means anything that can poke you or your coworker’s eye out. Still, many people will see a woman with rhinestones or “stay woke” on her nails and assume she doesn’t have a “real job”. As if creativeness has anything to do with a bank account. The thing that concerns me most about this issue is the fact that it’s usually women bashing other women on this issue. They deem women with long nails “ghetto and unprofessional” when in reality, that isn’t the case at all. Some women just want to *whispers* wear and do whatever they want!! It shouldn’t be a big deal on what the next woman has on her hand unless, of course, you’re the one paying for them.

 So, if you ever find yourself in the situation of not being “professional” for expressing yourself, don’t take it too personal. Many people, women especially, are stuck in their ideas of what works and doesn’t in the corporate world and will try to bash anything they deem different. Fashion and beauty is the ultimate form of self-expression and anyone trying to bring it to a halt is probably unhappy with themselves. Rock that length and design, babe, just for you!

Love,

Liz

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