What Are Acrylic Nails & How To Apply Them?

What are acrylic nails

Do you wish your nails to look as stunning as those you see online? Well, with acrylic nails, that dream is closer than you think. 

Acrylic nails are made from a special liquid and powder mix that gives your nails a strong, glamorous finish. And here’s the best part: you can do it at home!  

This way you can save your hours at the salon or break the bank for beautiful nails. 

In this guide, we’ll show you how easy it is to achieve salon-worthy nails right in the comfort of your own space. Whether you’re new to nail art or a pro, acrylic nails offer a simple yet effective way to boost your look and increase your confidence. 

Let’s get started;

The Benefits of Acrylic Nails & Why They’re Worth It

Acrylic nails look good but they also come with benefits that make them a popular choice for enthusiasts everywhere. Acrylic nails offer a winning combination of durability, versatility, and style. 

If you’re looking to add length to your nails, experiment with new designs, or simply enjoy long-lasting beauty, acrylic nails are a fantastic option. 

So why wait? Treat yourself to a set of acrylic nails and discover the many benefits. Let’s dive into why acrylic nails are worth considering:

1. Durability: 

Acrylic nails are renowned for their strength and resilience. Unlike natural nails, which can easily chip or break, acrylic nails provide a sturdy layer of protection that helps them withstand daily wear and tear.

2. Versatility: 

One of the best things about acrylic nails is their versatility. Whether you prefer a classic French manicure or bold, intricate designs, acrylic nails can be shaped and styled to suit your taste.

3. Length: 

If you’ve always dreamed of long, elegant nails but struggle to grow them naturally, acrylic nails can make your dreams a reality. With acrylics, you can instantly add length to your nails, giving you the glamorous look you desire.

4. Customization: 

With acrylic nails, the sky’s the limit to customization. From vibrant colors to eye-catching embellishments, acrylic nails offer endless possibilities for expressing your unique style and personality.

5. Longevity: 

When properly cared for, acrylic nails can last for weeks with their luster. Better than regular nail polish, which can chip and fade within days, acrylic nails maintain their shine and beauty for extended periods.

6. Repairability: 

Accidents happen, but with acrylic nails, fixing a broken nail is a breeze. Because acrylic nails are sculpted rather than grown, any damage can be easily repaired by a skilled nail technician, ensuring your nails always look their best.

A Step-by-Step Guide to Apply Acrylic Nails

Acrylic nails may seem intimidating to apply at first, but with the right technique and a little practice, you can achieve professional-looking results from the comfort of your own home. 

Follow this step-by-step guide to learn how to apply acrylic nails like a pro:

Preparing Your Nails

To start, ensure your natural nails are clean and free from any existing nail polish. Use a nail polish remover to thoroughly clean them. Next, gently push back your cuticles using a cuticle pusher. Then, lightly buff the surface of your nails to create a rough texture for better adhesion of the acrylic.

Prepping the Nail Tips

Select nail tips that match the width and shape of your natural nails. Trim and shape them as desired, then lightly roughen the surface with a nail file for better adhesion.

Applying Nail Primer

Apply a thin layer of nail primer to your natural nails. This step is crucial as it helps the acrylic adhere better and prevents lifting.

Mixing Acrylic Powder and Liquid Monomer

In a small dish, pour a small amount of liquid monomer. Dip your acrylic brush into it, then into the acrylic powder, creating a small bead of acrylic.

Applying Acrylic to Nail Tips

Place the bead of acrylic onto the nail tip near the cuticle and gently spread it out using the brush. Shape it to your desired nail shape and thickness. Repeat this process for each nail, working on one nail at a time.

Cleaning the Brush Between Applications

If needed, wipe your brush with a lint-free wipe dipped in monomer between applications to keep it clean.

Allowing the Acrylic to Dry

Allow the acrylic to dry completely before proceeding to the next step. This may take a few minutes.

Shaping and Buffing the Nails

Once dry, shape the nails to your desired length and shape using a nail file. Then, smooth out any rough edges with a nail buffer to create a shiny surface.

Applying Nail Polish or Nail Art

If desired, apply nail polish or nail art designs to finish off your acrylic nails. Allow the polish to dry completely before applying a top coat for added durability.

Moisturizing and Maintenance

Finally, moisturize your hands and cuticles to keep them hydrated. Maintain your acrylic nails by avoiding harsh chemicals and getting regular fills to keep them looking fresh.

By following these steps, you can master the art of applying acrylic nails and enjoy beautiful, long-lasting nails that are sure to turn heads wherever you go. Happy nail styling!

Application Tips Maintaining Your Acrylic Nails

Now that you’ve perfected the application of acrylic nails, it’s essential to maintain them properly to ensure they stay looking fabulous for as long as possible. Here are some top tips for maintaining your acrylic nails and preserving their beauty:

1. Keep Them Dry: 

Excessive exposure to water can weaken the bond between the acrylic and your natural nails, leading to lifting and breakage. Be sure to wear gloves when doing dishes or cleaning to protect your nails from prolonged exposure to water.

2. Avoid Harsh Chemicals: 

Chemicals found in household cleaning products, such as bleach and acetone, can damage acrylic nails and cause them to become brittle. Whenever possible, use non-toxic cleaning alternatives and wear gloves to protect your nails.

3. Moisturize Regularly:

 Acrylic nails can sometimes lead to dryness, so it’s essential to moisturize your hands and cuticles regularly. Opt for a nourishing hand cream or cuticle oil to keep your skin hydrated and prevent cracking.

4. Be Gentle with Your Nails: 

Avoid using your acrylic nails as tools for tasks such as opening cans or scratching off stickers, as this can weaken the acrylic and cause it to lift. Treat your nails with care and they’ll stay looking beautiful for longer.

5. Get Regular Fills: 

As your natural nails grow, the gap between the acrylic and your cuticles will become more noticeable. To maintain a polished look, schedule regular fills with your nail technician to fill in the gaps and keep your nails looking fresh.

6. Protect Your Nails in Extreme Temperatures: 

Exposure to extreme temperatures, such as hot water or cold weather, can cause acrylic nails to expand and contract, leading to lifting and breakage. Whenever possible, protect your nails from extreme temperatures to prolong their lifespan.

7. Avoid Picking or Peeling: 

If you notice any lifting or chipping of the acrylic, resist the urge to pick or peel it off. Doing so can damage your natural nails and weaken the acrylic bond. Instead, visit your nail technician for proper maintenance and repairs.

8. Opt for Professional Removal: 

When it’s time to remove your acrylic nails, avoid DIY methods such as soaking them in acetone, as this can damage your natural nails. Instead, visit a professional nail technician who can safely remove the acrylic without causing harm to your nails.

By following these tips, you can maintain the beauty and longevity of your acrylic nails and enjoy stunning nails that turn heads wherever you go. With proper care and maintenance, your acrylic nails will continue to look fabulous for weeks to come.

Do’s and Don’ts of Doing Acrylic Nails at Home

When attempting to do acrylic nails at home, you should follow certain guidelines to achieve the best results while minimizing the risk of damage. Start with clean, dry nails and ensure you have all the necessary supplies. 

Take your time and work in thin, even layers to build up the acrylic. Also, practice proper hygiene by cleaning your tools and sanitizing your workspace. However, being patient is the way to better process process or apply acrylic too thickly, as this can lead to lifting and breakage. 

Properly prep your nails and use a nail primer to ensure the acrylic adheres well. Proper aftercare, including moisturizing your hands and avoiding harsh chemicals is also recommended. 

By following these dos and don’ts, you can achieve salon-quality acrylic nails at home while maintaining the health and integrity of your natural nails.


Are acrylic nails damaging to natural nails?

Acrylic nails, when applied and removed properly, should not cause significant damage to natural nails. However, improper application or removal techniques can weaken the nails over time.

How long do acrylic nails last?

Acrylic nails typically last between 2 to 3 weeks before needing a fill or maintenance. With proper care and maintenance, they can last even longer.

Can I remove acrylic nails at home?

While it’s possible to remove acrylic nails at home using acetone, it’s recommended to visit a professional nail technician for safe and proper removal to avoid damaging your natural nails.

Are acrylic nails suitable for everyone?

Acrylic nails are generally safe for most people, but individuals with certain nail conditions or allergies may need to avoid them. It’s essential to consult with a nail technician or dermatologist if you have any concerns.

How much does it cost to get acrylic nails done professionally?

The cost of professional acrylic nail services can vary depending on factors such as location, salon reputation, and the complexity of the design. On average, a full set of acrylic nails can range from $30 to $100, with fills costing around $20 to $50.


Acrylic nails are an accessible solution for achieving stunning nails at home. With easy application and versatility, they offer a simple yet effective way to enhance your natural nails. 

Whether to add length, experiment with colors and designs, or simply want to boost your confidence, acrylic nails provide endless possibilities. 

If you know the basics and practice proper techniques, you can create beautiful nail looks that reflect your unique style. So, why wait?

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