Applied with a regular brush, acrylics are the staple for most manicures. They are mixtures of powder and liquid that set after about two minutes when left to dry. Though smelly, they do not need anything more than time to properly set. While many are just one color, a lot employ the use of glitter and metallic sheens to allow for incredible pieces of nail artistry.
Gels are a premixed acrylic that lacks the odor commonly smelled with acrylics. In addition, there’s a bit more work involved since the nails have to be dried using either an LED or UV lamp. This type of light causes a chain reaction resulting in the hardening of the polish. Most of these are extremely thin, flexible, and resistant to chipping for up to two weeks with proper care.
Opting for a different look but with similar materials, dips can be a great way to further push the capability of acrylics. Instead of painting on a mixed solution, the nail is coated with a sticky resin then dipped in acrylic powder. Aside from a little extra work cleaning the fingers of the dust, it’s a style that leads to some pretty impressive looks.
Normal nail polish is simply a lacquer that air dries. In a typical manicure, there will be a base coat, three polish coats, and the final normal polish top coat. Unfortunately for all of the time it takes to apply this polish, chips are very common within only a few days, guaranteeing maybe a week of perfect nails before the color should be removed.