You want to know whether the new dip nails are better than the old acrylic nails so you can try them out and also which one is a better nail product to do at home.

Dip nails are a better artificial nail enhancement product than acrylic nails. The application of dip nails is simple, easy to learn and master, and does not need complicated power tools compared to and does not require a nail drill.

What are dip and acrylic nails?

For the sake of completeness, I will briefly go over what dip nails and acrylic nails are.

What are dip nails?

Dip nails or dip powder nails are the common names for a nail enhancement product that SNS, a nail product manufacturer, created.

The main ingredient in dip nails is high-quality, fine-ground acrylic powder. Therefore, dip powder is the same as acrylic powder. However, this fine acrylic powder is applied to the nails using various glues. Dip powder is sprinkled on the nails in layers to make them thicker, one after another, until the desired thickness is achieved.

The application process is relatively simple. All you need to do is attach nail tips with nail glue if you want your nails longer. Shape them the way you like, and start dipping.

Even it is simple, but you need to practice to get the hang of it. Since dip nails have only need a few simple steps to apply, it does not take you a long time or a lot of practice to master.

You can give yourself a great-looking set of dip nails at home after you practice a few times.

On the other hand, acrylic nails are quite the opposite.

What are acrylic nails?

Acrylic nails have been the number one artificial nail enhancement product for a long time.

In 1954, Fred Slack, a dentist, broke his fingernail and created an artificial nail as a realistic-looking temporary replacement. That was when acrylic nails were invented.

The two main ingredients in acrylic nails are acrylic powder polymer (the same as dip powder ) and acrylic liquid monomer. To create an acrylic nail, acrylic is mixed with the acrylic liquid. The new combined substance only stays in paste-like form for less than 10 seconds. This is how much time a nail tech has to sculpt it into a nail using an acrylic nail brush.

Sculpting a blob of paste-like acrylics into a pretty nail requires a lot of practice. To do this right, a nail technician has to take many things into account:

  • The right mix of powder and liquid ratio
  • The skill of using an acrylic nail brush proficiently
  • Laying this paste onto the nail and forming it into a nice-looking nail before it solidifies in under 10 seconds.

The amount of acrylic powder that is loaded on a nail brush is different every time, so each acrylic nail can be either thinner or thicker than the others on the same hand.

After the acrylic powder is applied, the next step is to shape these ten nails using a nail file to have the same look.

Solidified acrylic nails are very hard. Depending on how much filling is needed, this filing and shaping step could take a long time to finish.

What are the differences between dip nails and acrylic nails?

In short, the main difference between dip nails and acrylic nails is their application process. Dip powder nails use a special low odor nail glue to apply acrylic powder, whereas acrylic nails need a strong odor acrylic liquid monomer to apply acrylic powder.

The finished look of dip nails and acrylic nails is similar, except that acrylic nails tend to be thicker at the stress point or apex. This makes acrylic nails stronger than dip nails.

Polishing on these two types of nails is the same. You can use any kind of nail polish color on them.

Now let us look into each of the three aspects to see whether dip powder nails or acrylic nails are a better DIY product to use at home.

Dip nails vs. acrylic nails: the showdown

We will compare dip and acrylic in three different areas.

Dip vs. acrylic: application

Dip nail application is more straightforward than that of acrylic nails.

You can get good at apply dip powder on your nails after a few times.

All you need to do for dip nails are:

  1. Attach the nail tips with glue (optional)
  2. Trim and shape these nails using a nail file, just as you would on your own nails
  3. Blend in the glued seams also using a nail file
  4. Remove shine using a fine buffer
  5. Clean and dehydrate the nail surface
  6. Apply dip powder using a simple dipping process.
  7. Minimal filing touch up to bring all the nails to the same shape
  8. Buff nails to smooth

On the other hand, applying acrylic powder is much more involved:

  1. Attach the nail tips with glue (optional)
  2. Trim and shape these nails using a nail file, just as you would on your own nails
  3. Blend in the glued seams also using a nail file
  4. Remove shine using a fine buffer
  5. Clean and dehydrate the nail surface
  6. Apply acrylic primer
  7. Sculpting each nail by using an acrylic nail brush to form a bead(s) of acrylic powder onto the nails: this step is easier said than done. It may take a person a lot of practice before she can get good at it.
  8. Much more involved hand-filing in bringing all the nails to the same shape. This step is usually done by using a nail drill, which requires a lot of training and practice before using it proficiently.
  9. Buff nails to smooth.

The verdict:

Acrylic nails require a lot of training to be able to do steps 7 and 8. Not only are they much harder to do, but they also take up a lot of time.

A person at home can not apply a set of acrylic nails in 30 minutes, but she can do so with dip powder with a lot less training and effort.

So in this application round, dip nails win.

Dip vs. acrylic: comfort

Using simple nail tools, a person can do dip nails in 30 minutes. Acrylic nails can require a lot of filing with a nail drill to remove unwanted or excess acrylic powder on the nails, which will create a more messy work area with nail dust.

Since dip nails do not need a strong-odor acrylic liquid monomer, they are more pleasant to work with. Anyone who works or has acrylic nails done knows very well that the surrounding air is filled with a strong odor. This odor can be offensive to anyone who happens to be near it, who is not used to this strong smell.

Without the need for smelly acrylic liquid monomer, dip nails can be done anywhere without offending anyone.

Dip nails can be done with a nail file in 30 minutes, whereas acrylic nails require a nail drill to shape bulky acrylic nails into shape. This step could take as much as 30 minutes alone, tiring a nail technician out, and her customer has to sit 30 minutes longer.

The verdict:

A person who can get dip nails on her hands as quickly as 30 minutes compared to acrylic nails might have to sit for a couple of hours.

A person doing dip nails can finish them in 30 minutes, while it could take up to two hours for her to do a set of acrylic nails.

As far as the ease and comfort for a person doing the nails or receiving them, dip nails win again.

Dip vs. acrylic: removal

You can take off dip nails much faster than you do acrylic nails.

Removing dip nails:

  • Taking off dip powder nails of your hand is a simple process of soaking them in acetone for 10 minutes.
  • Remove the shiny topcoat or sealer using a nail file
  • Soak dip nails in a bowl filled with acetone

In 10 minutes or so, the acetone will dissolve all dip powder and cause it to detach from the natural nails.

You can do all of those above steps yourself at home.

Removing acrylic nails:

Taking off acrylic nails is a lengthy process of soaking them in acetone. This process can take up to 30 minutes to complete with additional help.

The solidified acrylic powder does not readily dissolve in acetone. You need to scrape off the soft top layer so acetone can work on lower layers. This process requires extra work, and it would be helpful if you had a different set of hands that do the scrapping for you.

It will be more challenging if you try to take off acrylic on your nails at home. If you were to pull, peel or rip them off, you could damage your nails and cause pain removing your acrylic nails this way.

The verdict:

You can take off dip nails yourself in 10 minutes at home.

Acrylic nails take at least 30 minutes to be removed from the natural nails, and it needs help along the way, preferably with an extra set of hands.

In this last round, dip nails win.

So because of all of the above, if you ask me if dip powder nails get into a verbal catfight with acrylic nails, dip nails knock out acrylic nails in three rounds, hands down.

If you are still not convinced, find out more about why you should not do acrylic nails at home.

Photo by Julia Larson from Pexels.

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