Gel and acrylic nails are both extremely popular options when it comes to artificial nails, but if you prefer gel or acrylic nails, it ultimately comes down to personal preference. Both methods offer the means to create beautiful nails with extra length, strength and a beautiful aesthetic, whether you are looking for a natural look or something extra!

Appearance

One of the most important aspects of choosing between acrylic or gel nails is, of course, the general look you can expect after applying.

acrylic nails

Although they have completely different methods of application (more on that soon) gel and acrylic nails look very similar. Both gels and acrylics can be made either to fit the length of the nails or applied as an extension using nail tips or shapes. The main difference between the two is that the acrylics are a little thicker than the gels, while the gels are glossy and look more like your natural nails.

Application Method of Gel and Acrylic Nails

Acrylics are a mixture of liquid monomer and a powdered polymer that is applied to the nails and moulded to the desired length before being air-dried to harden. You can watch our video on the basics of acrylic application for a complete tutorial!

The gel does not require mixing and comes in individual dishes in the colors of your choice. Gel nails are applied in the same way as standard nail polish, but in three steps; a base coat, the color of the gel and then a top coat, before drying under a UV or LED light. The result is much harder and more resistant to chipping than standard polishing.

The removal process of Gel and Acrylic Nails

The safest way to remove nails from acrylic or gel without damaging your natural nails is by soaking them in acetone. If you don’t know how to do this without damaging your nails, always go to a professional nail technician. If you want to make it at home, you can watch our video on this for useful tips, as the gel will only soften if it is a soft gel, hard gels can only be removed by filling.

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Pro and Contra Gel Nails

Pro:

  • Glossy appearance
  • Flex lightly so it is comfortable to wear
  • Relatively kind to the nail bed
  • Simple application process
  • Easy to remove
  • Soft file

Versus:

  • Not as durable as acrylic nails
  • More expensive than acrylic
  • Repeated removal can cause nail bed damage

Pro and Contra Acrylic Nails

Pro:

  • Tough and robust
  • Long-lasting when applied correctly
  • Easy to remove
  • Generally less expensive than gels
  • Can use acrylic to create 3D models

Versus:

  • Not as natural as gel nails
  • A chemical odour during application
  • Fast curing time can make it difficult for beginners to apply
  • In conclusion, both are very good, what do you choose?