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‘I’ve been growing my 12-inch nails for 30 years – I love the attention I get’

A woman with 12-inch fingernails has revealed the best thing about having long nails is the “attention” she gets from people who stop and ask her questions about her unique look.

Cordelia Adams, 59, has been growing her nails out for more than 30 years after she decided to make the leap in 1989 because she loved her mum’s long nails so much.

At their longest, Cordelia’s nails were 16 inches, but she now keeps them at an impressive 12 inches and makes sure to trim them every now and again to get them back to her desired length.

And while her nails mean that Cordelia has to do some tasks, such as doing the washing up and scrolling on her phone, with her knuckles, she wouldn’t change her look for the world.

Speaking in a Hooked on the Look video on Truly’s YouTube channel, Cordelia – who also shares her unique nails on TikTok – said: “The best thing about having the super long nails is the attention.

“I joined TikTok in the middle of the pandemic, and I was just doing it for fun because I saw people doing fun antics on there, so I decided to try it. The video of mine that went viral, which has 17 million views, was simply a handwashing video.

“I like it. Even though a lot of the time the comments are negative, I like it. I enjoy answering them back.”

However, Cordelia, from Gary, Indiana, USA, says the worst thing about her long nails is the “disrespectful” questions some people ask her – such as ‘how do you eat?’ and ‘how do you take care of yourself?’.

The woman, who works as a nail technician herself, has worked out a way of completing her day-to-day tasks without letting her nails get in the way, such as using her knuckles instead of her fingertips for certain actions.

And when it comes to holding things, Cordelia says her fingernails are curved in such a way that they naturally fold back against her arm, so they don’t bother her.

She explained: “The nails fold back over my arm, so if I’m holding something they’re out of the way completely. I don’t go at anything fingertip first.”

What’s more, Cordelia treats her nails as art, as she regularly paints impressive and intricate designs on each nail by topping up the artwork from the base when her nails grow.

And the nail technician has been able to keep her nails in such good condition that her artwork never chips or fades – with some paint staying on for up to five years.

She said: “It usually takes me anywhere between 10 minutes to half an hour, depending on the design. If I were to take all this [paint] off and start over, it would take me two and a half hours to execute a design.

“The paint never comes off, so some of these designs have been on here [for a long time]. This design has been on here for going on five years now.”

Most importantly, Cordelia is happy with her nails and doesn’t see herself ever cutting them drastically.

She added: “I would not consider having short nails again.”