Basic Anatomy of a Nail

Nail anatomy plays an important role in any nail technician's career. It is the main focus during the schooling and board exam process. Learning each and every essential parts of the nail is going to help you to provide a safe and quality service for all your clients.

Eponychium: the visible part of the proximal nail fold at the base of the nail

Cuticle: a thin layer of dead tissue that seals between the nail plate and eponychium to prevent pathogens from infecting the matrix

Hyponychium: the thickened band of living tissue beneath the free edge of the nail

Nail walls: where the sides of the nail end

Lunula: whitish “moon” area at the base of the nail

Nail plate: the entire nail surface that sits on top of the nail bed. It’s made up of non-living keratin nail cells

Free edge: the growth of the nail beyond the fingertip which can be filed and shaped

Matrix: known as nail root which contains nerves and blood and lymph vessels that produce nail cells

Nail bed: the skin beneath the nail plate.

Jade Tang

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