Nail cosmetics are used by millions of people worldwide who desire smooth, lustrous nails. The nail cosmetic industry continues to expand to meet increasing consumer demand. In 2011 alone, consumers spent $6.6 billion on nail salon services. Although nail cosmetics are relatively safe, poor application techniques can promote disease, deformity, and allergic and irritant contact dermatitis. The foundation for managing nail cosmetic problems is prevention through education. Familiarity with the procedures and materials used in the nail cosmetic industry is necessary in order to recommend safe nail care strategies.