In 2017, Houston native and nail enthusiast Ayanna Williams broke the Guinness World Record for the world’s longest fingernails, which measured approximately 19 feet long and required two bottles of nail polish and nearly a full day to do a manicure. Fast-forward to this past weekend, and Williams’ actually broke her own record with a new measurement of just over 24 feet. But that’s not the news making headlines. What is in fact, is that Williams made the incredibly tough and emotional decision to finally cut her nails after 28 years.
“I’ve been growing my nails for a few decades now,” Williams tells Guinness World Records. “I’m so, so ready for a new life. I’m know I’m going to miss them, but it’s just about that time—it’s time for them to go.”
To get the job done, Williams visited Fort Worth, TX dermatologist Allison Readinger, MD, who used an electric rotary tool to cut the nails down, though they’re still longer than a traditional manicure. The trimmed nails will now be preserved and on display at the Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Museum in Orlando, FL, which Williams is looking forward to. “It’s gonna be awesome. It’s going to be a like a wax of myself even though it’s just my nails. I can’t wait to see that, for real. I’m going to be grinning from ear to ear. Just really think about it, it’s amazing.”
And though she will miss her nails, which have become such a big part of her identity, Williams is looking forward to doing daily tasks with ease. “With my movements I have to be very, very careful. So usually in my mind I’m already preparing for the next step that I have to do to make sure that I don’t hurt myself with my nails, or break them. I’m excited about cutting my nails because I’m looking forward to new beginnings. With or without my nails, I will still be the queen. My nails don’t make me, I make my nails!”
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