I’m not particularly good at guitar, but I use finger picks to play guitar when I need that finger nail sound so I can play harp without nails.
Do people play harp with nails? Sure. Many people who play Latin harp use their nails. Some folks who play on nylon strings use their nails. And of course nails are the perefered way most wire strung harpists play as it is the traditional way.
However, just as you noticed that pads may work on guitar in some genres but not all, same with using nails on harp. You can do it, but with many genres it doesn’t sound right, and will hinder what you can do if you are playing gut strings on a concert harp.
Compromise is in everything. If you really want to persue the concert harp you will probably find at some point you will cut your nails.