Hema, What’s the scoop?

There are a lot of discussions about HEMA these days.

Everyone has likely seen the following ingredients listed on product labels. HEMA and di-Hema.

First, we need to discuss the differences between them. Di-Hema and HEMA have very different molecular structures, with di-HEMA being a considerably larger molecule than HEMA. HEMA is a known high-level allergen. All acrylates are allergens, but di-HEMA is considerably less so. This is almost certainly due to its molecular size and lesser ability to penetrate the skin.

Why use Hema at all? For years, it was the gold standard adhesive, the very reason that the gel adheres to the nail. Having an adhesive property in the product is important to prevent service breakdown. The nail industry is not the only field that uses this ingredient. It is also widely used by dentists and orthopedic surgeons. The reason that this ingredient may be reporting more allergies than others is because of the smaller molecular size as mentioned above.

Allergies build up over time from overexposure of repetitive skin contact with an allergen (in this case usually an ingredient in nail products). And this can be any of the chemical ingredients, in particular, acrylates.

HEMA is not the only allergen identified on nail technician and nail customer dermatologist tests. Many that present an allergy to HEMA, also have an allergy to many other acrylates and HEMA-free alternative ingredients too. Allergens to different ingredients may present differently, so it is important to look for different signs and symptoms. The most important part of controlling an allergy to any nail product, HEMA or otherwise, is product handling (keeping it off the skin), proper curing, dust control and ventilation.

Amore uses mainly Di-Hema in their formulations and there is HEMA in only a FEW of the products (Bonder, Crystal Sculpt and Crystal Gloss) We will indicate if a product has HEMA in it on our product information cards, as well as the ingredient listings on the jars. Amore also has HEMA and di-Hema free products (Smooth Sculpt/Move and Free & Easy).

HEMA is considered safe in Professional Use Only products in a concentration of 25% or less

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