Acrylics are the oldest form of nail extension in the modern beauty industry, and have long since been a staple due their staying power. The acrylic itself is a mixture of liquid monomer and a powder polymer, which when combined form a hard protective layer that is sculpted over the natural nail.
Acrylic nail extensions will only become hard when exposed to air, and when this happens and the process is complete the nails become a strong and glossy base that is a fantastic for colour application.
The procedure is a multi-step process that usually involves preparing the natural nail by cleaning, shaping, buffing and cuticle work, before then applying artificial tips to add length (if required) and the acrylic on top.
Pros of acrylic nails
– Acrylic nails are very strong and durable and can last a long time.
– Great for adding length to short nails.
Cons of acrylic nails
– Can result in damage to the nail bed, as the natural nail is unable to breathe beneath the acrylic. When acrylics are removed the nail beneath is often very weak and brittle.
Upkeep and longevity
The life of acrylic nail extensions varies greatly from person to person and is dependent upon numerous factors. For example, an individual who carries out manual labour or is required to use their hands constantly in their job will probably find that their nails do not last as long as someone who has an office based typing role which does not subject the nails to much stress or trauma.
However, generally speaking most salons recommend that you have your acrylics either touched up with infills or removed every three to four weeks.
Removing acrylic nails
Whilst it is recommended that you have your acrylics removed by the nail technician who applied them – if you take your time and purchase the right materials it is possible to remove them yourself at home.