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True or false: you can tell if a woman is 'psycho' by her manicure?

A sexist dating survival guide is encouraging men to check out a potential mate's nails to see if she's worth the 'investment'. Here's a female perspective on his theories

18 March 2019 - 00:00 By Toni Jaye Singer and PEARL BOSHOMANE TSOTETSI
'Nails at First Sight' cautions men against dating women with long, sharp nails saying 'they’re f****ng weapons'.
'Nails at First Sight' cautions men against dating women with long, sharp nails saying 'they’re f****ng weapons'.
Image: 123RF/branche

It's common practice to check out a woman's ring finger before hitting on her, but Californian Marwan Alteir, the internet's newest "dating guru", suggests you check out her manicure too.

Alteir, who goes by "Rocky" online, has created a controversial dating survival guide called Nails at First Sight, which he claims is a "foolproof" way to help his fellow "bros" quickly and easily weed out potential "psychos" and heartbreakers.

He published an overview of the guide on Twitter and the video — which has been viewed over 4.6 million times — is full of helpful, sexists tips like "if she has the courage to get yellow nails, she has the courage to chop off your balls" and  if she opts for a safe nude shade she's more likely to make you breakfast in bed.

Alteir claims his guide is based on "countless hours of research" which apparently involved him showing 30 men photos of woman's nails and asking their opinions about them. "If more than one guy said the same thing about a particular nail, it would go in the book," he told BuzzFeed.

But how sound is his science? Pearl Boshomane Tsotetsi, Sunday Times Lifestyle magazine editor, believes that a woman's hairstyle determines what type of men will hit on her (read her column about it here), so we thought she'd be the perfect person to yay or neigh some of Alteir's theories: 



What Rocky claims: The "safe" colours are nudes and soft pinks. If your girlfriend has these shades on her nails, "you’ll sleep with two eyes closed," he says. Bonus? You could get breakfast in the morning.

What Pearl says: So silly. Nudes are more for practicality because they work with any colour outfit — no need to colour co-ordinate. We’re not trying to be your mom or your maid. We're not suddenly going to turn into a domestic goddess just because our nails are demure. We're not going to serve you with a tray, kneel and call you "Baba".  


What Rocky claims: Be cautious of these women, because they could be "dangerous", but they could also be "normal" and "safe".

What Pearl says: Hate to admit it, but he could have a point. Many women who get French manicures don’t often experiment with other nail styles — this is their go-to, their trademark, fail-safe look. The less experimental someone is, the more disciplined and serious they are. Type A personalities, basically. And those people could very well be sociopaths. They won’t hack you to death — they’re more likely to poison you, bury you in the backyard and pretend nothing happened.


What Rocky claims: These are allegedly "danger colours". He says "if the colour is in the rainbow, run!" And then this hilarious statement: "If she has the courage to get yellow nails, she has the courage to chop off your balls."

What Pearl says: Rubbish. Women who get bold and neon colours are adventurous and experimental: they don’t really care what other people think of them. This makes them less likely to "chop off your balls" because they won’t stress over you, they’ll be nonchalant and live their lives to please themselves. To quote Bonang, they are the women most likely to tell a man: "Fit in, or f**k off." The end.



What Rocky claims: "They’re not sharp for no reason – they’re f***ing weapons." So stay VERY far away.

What Pearl says: Those are dominatrix tendency nails, and the chance of a dom scratching your eyes out because you're fighting are slim. These nails were made for scratching your back, so sexually adventurous or very passionate women are likely to have these. When you’re looking at your back in the mirror and it’s like you were fighting a cat, they mean that you did a darn good job of pleasing her. 

Different nail shapes at a glance.
Different nail shapes at a glance.
Image: 123RF/branche



What Rocky claims: Pretentious and "basic" girls who have brunch on Sundays. They’re not very healthy and they’re not very strong.   

What Pearl says: Some of the claims might be true (what’s wrong with brunch on Sundays?), but women wearing these nails are often very active – so they are physically strong. You can’t fit long nails into boxing gloves (you’ll hurt yourself) and doing the downward dog with long nails can be tricky. They can kick your butt.


What Rocky claims: These women are mostly broke, use the word "dzaddy" and they’re unpredictable. So Kardashians minus the money.

What Pearl says: Nope! These women are feeling sort of adventurous and slightly dramatic. They’re not usually attention-seekers. They are women who keep high heels in their car and can easily upgrade a day look to a night look, and they’ll sometimes add a little glitter to their eyelids. They like Pat McGrath makeup tutorials on Instagram, but aren’t quite into Kylie Jenner’s lip kits. Basically they party hard on Saturday and go to church on Sundays. They’re versatile and manage their schedules successfully.  They’ve got their own money. Ariana Grande’s 7 Rings and Beyonce’s Formation are their songs. How do I know? I’m one of these women. This is my category.


What Rocky claims: "You know when you’re playing a video game and you get to that last boss? This is the boss.” He says these ladies twerk, probably have an ex-boyfriend in jail and maybe used to sell drugs. They also like the word "papi" and are serial heartbreakers.

What Pearl says: This one’s actually offensive and classist because he’s clearly making references to black and Latina women. Very US-specific and an unfair analysis. I do agree with the claim that these women are in their Super Saiyan form and that they will break your heart. They are bolder and more individualistic than the neon colour-rocking ladies.


Nails are not plastic surgery. They are temporary and they go according to our mood, schedules and jobs. If you’ve got a wedding to attend, the nails need to complement your outfit. (Unless you’re the bridesmaid, in which case you’ll probably rock pastel and nude shades.) If you work in corporate, chances are you won’t choose long, sharp, orange nails with diamantes on them.

It’s really not that deep, bros. A woman can wear Lana Del Rey-style nails and still cook you breakfast. A woman could have short, nude nails and still cut off your balls. You’ll never figure us out.