Hi, I ve come across a few articles on this topic and they might be interesting for you. What I gathered is that the part not to be cut is really the eponychium, which is the seal between our nails and skin. This is the barrier to prevent infection and should not be cut. Cuticles on the other hand are the thin layers of non living tissue on the nail plate. The picture on this article gives a good close-up view for better understanding. My personal thought is that it is OK to push back / trim the cuticles, as long as it is done by trusted, trained professionals, with the right tools, and after the cuticles are softened.
Having said that, some professionals could be overzealous in cleaning up the cuticles and cut too near the eponychium, and that should not be allowed, so we have to watch out for ourselves at the salon at all times.
People wonder if theyвre supposed to push back the skin of their cuticles. Not only are you not supposed to push it back, but you should never push it back because thatвs a great way to cause an infection. Your cuticle is that tiny but very important thin strip of dead skin that connects the skin of the end of your finger to your nail and most people think itвs just a piece of dead skin, they donвt realize how important it is, so they try to remove it, by cutting it, by pushing it, sometimes even by biting it because they think that without their cuticles their fingers will look better, but what they donвt know is how important that cuticle is in sealing skin to the nail from where the nail grows out so no germs can get into the space as the nail grows out because if germs get in there you get an infection and the germs that most commonly do that are bacteria and yeast, the same yeast that causes womenвs vaginal infections.
And if you get a yeast infection of the skin, which we call a paronychia, itвs tender, it becomes red and swollen and it takes months to go away, although it will go away with treatment.
So remember, your cuticle is your friends, treat it well, donвt push them away and by the way, if you did push back your cuticle, donвt worry, it will grow back again.