Do I need to take a break to let my nails ‘breathe’?
I’m going to be a little long-winded here, but I need to explain this well.
When a product is applied to a nail, the keratin (what nails are made of) is no longer exposed to the air. Keratin hardens once it is exposed to air. Therefore, any nail which has product removed from it will be soft, like when it first comes out of the matrix (underneath your cuticle). When you remove your enhancements, you need to apply a hardener or strengthener just to allow time for the keratin to harden again.
It is not because your nails are damaged that they feel soft and weak, merely a period of time must pass in order for them to revert to their previous state (unless they have been damaged by an incompetent nail tech or beautician).
Nails do not have lungs, they don’t breathe, they simply harden when exposed to air.
Now, with some products, it is recommended that you remove them every so often, as the ingredients can be absorbed into the body and possibly cause hypersensitivity after repeated use, however, it is not the same for all products so you should ask your nail tech to advise you accordingly.