From acrylics to gels, there are quite a few options to choose from when it comes to getting your nails done at the salon. Enter dip nails, which happen to be one of the hottest beauty trends at the moment. If you’re not familiar with nail dipping, you’re about to be! Read on for the 4-1-1 on dip powder nails.
WHAT ARE DIP NAILS?
Dip nails fall somewhere in between acrylic and gel nails—and they happen to be one of the most long-lasting nail polish options out there. The process involves first removing all traces of nail polish, filing and shaping your nails, and pushing back your cuticles, similar to your standard manicure. Then, the nails are wiped clean of any oils that could impact the longevity of your mani. After that, a clear base coat is applied to the nail to prep for your dip nail polish. Keep in mind that while they look similar, this isn’t the same type of base coat you would use for a regular nail polish.
Next up? Taking your pick from an array of dip nail colors—AKA pigmented powders! You may have seen oh-so-satisfying videos of individuals dipping their nails into dip powder on social media, but this won’t be the case at the salon. Rather, before the base coat dries down, your nail technician will brush the dip nail color onto your nail directly to keep things sanitary. Next, they’ll dust off excess powder and apply another layer of base coat before repeating the “dipping” process until you have a pretty, opaque color.
Once you’re happy with the color, the nail tech will follow up with a layer of clear powder and a coat of sealant. Then, they’ll file your nails down to ensure the dip powder is smooth and flat on your nails. After a quick hand washing, your dip nails are ready for their top coat. Apply it and you’re done—no UV or LED lights required!
HOW TO REMOVE DIP NAILS?
Before you go to remove your dip nail polish at home, let us advise against it! Since dip nails are long-lasting, you’ll want to head to the salon to have the polish removed once your nails start to grow out. Removing dip powder is a similar process to taking off gel polish. First, the dip powder will be filed down; then the remaining polish will be removed with acetone.
HOW LONG DO DIP NAILS LAST?
We’ve mentioned that dip nails last, but how long do they really last? On average, dip powder nails can last anywhere from two weeks to a month. Instead of needing to re-up your mani when the polish starts to chip, usually what ends up happening is the dip powder will still look great, but your nails will have grown so much that it will be time for a do-over. Pretty great, huh?
CAN YOU PAINT OVER DIP NAILS?
Yes, you can technically paint over dip nails, as the dip powder will be sealed with a final top coat before you leave the salon. That being said, why get a long-lasting manicure only to paint over it?
If you only need to temporarily change up your nail color, say for a job interview, you should be able to paint a netural shade over your dip polish, then remove it with non-acetone nail polish remover, and still preserve your manicure underneath.
HOW MUCH DO DIP NAILS COST?
What about the cost? Prices will vary based on the salon you go to, but typically dip nails cost between $30 and $50. A tip is also customary, so budget for about an additional 20% of your manicure cost.
PROS AND CONS OF DIP NAILS
We’re sure dip nails sound pretty enticing, don’t they? Before you book an appointment at the nearest salon, let’s go over some pros and cons worth mentioning.
Dip Nail Pro #1: It’s long-lasting. Don’t want to deal with chips and constant nail touch-ups? Dip powder nails will take away the need for getting your nails redone—at least for longer than other nail options out there!
Dip Nail Con #1: It’s long-lasting. Yes, this can be a con, too! If you want to switch up your nails regularly, dip nails will make it slightly more difficult to do so. If you’re someone who gets bored with their nail color quickly, a different manicure option may be a better choice.
Dip Nail Pro #2: It protects your nails. Just as gel nail polish provides a protective coating for your nails, so do dip powder nails. This protects against external factors—not to mention it can help you kick bad habits like biting your nails.
Dip Nail Con #2: It can still harm your nails. Dip nails still contain acrylic, and can still damage your natural nail over time.
Dip Nail Pro #3: It’s gentler than other options. As far as nail options go, dip nails are just as healthy as gel nail polish, and generally better for your nails than acrylics.
Dip Nail Con #3: It can be unsanitary. Remember how we mentioned that your nail technician should brush the dip powder onto your nail, rather than dipping your fingers into the powder as the name suggests? This is vital to avoid potential infection, as dipping your nail into the powder or even pouring it over your nail and allowing the powder to fall back into the container can spread bacteria. No thanks!
Next up: Keep the nail theme going and read our article, Jelly Nails Are Our New Favorite Nail Trend.