Polygel Nails: A Complete Beginners Guide

If you’re into making your nails look fabulous, whether with plain colors or fancy designs, you might have heard of gel nails, acrylic nails, and dip powder nails. But if you have not heard about polygel nails yet, let us tell you about this new nail polish formula. We’ll explain what it is and how it’s different from gel nails and acrylics. This way, you can decide whether to try polygel for your next nail makeover. These nails are fabulous. They look nice and are easier to put on than acrylic nails. But the not-so-good part is that they don’t last as long as acrylic nails do.

Gel manicures have become increasingly famous due to their ability to deliver a glossy, chip-resistant finish that can last for weeks. Unlike traditional nail polish, gel polish is cured under a UV or LED lamp, creating a durable and smudge-proof layer on the natural nail. The process involves a base coat, multiple color layers, and a topcoat to seal in the shine. Polygel has been hailed by pros and amateurs alike as one of the most cutting-edge nail products since it is comfortable to use, long-lasting, and a simple nail improvement to apply.

What is Polygel?

The best aspects of acrylic and gel nails are combined in Polygel,  a nail enhancement solution. It’s a unique formula used to create and shape artificial nails, similar to acrylics and gels, but with some distinct advantages. Polygel is typically available in a putty-like consistency and is applied directly onto the natural nails or nail tips using special techniques and tools. Similar to conventional nail paint, it is available in various colors and sheens. The gel can be added to tips or nail extensions or placed over your natural nails using an acrylic brush. It is cured like gel polish with a UV or LED light after being brushed and molded.

Difference Between Polygel, Acrylic, and Dip Powder Nails

Polygel, acrylic, and dip powder nails are three popular types of artificial nail enhancements, each with its unique characteristics:

  • Polygel Nails: It is a modern nail enhancement that combines acrylic and gel properties. It’s applied as a putty-like substance and can be shaped before being cured under a UV or LED light. Polygel is known for its lightweight and flexible feel, reduced odor, and ease of application. It’s a good option for those looking for a balance between acrylic nails’ strength and gel nails’ flexibility. However, it might not be as durable as acrylic nails.
  • Acrylic Nails: These nails combine a powdered polymer with a liquid monomer and mold the resulting paste onto the nails or nail tips. The paste hardens as it dries, forming solid and durable artificial nails. Acrylic nails are known for their toughness and ability to withstand everyday wear and tear. They are ideal for individuals who need long-lasting, robust nail extensions. However, the application process involves the use of strong chemicals and can emit strong odors.
  • Dip Powder Nails: Dip powder nails involve applying a bonding liquid to the nails and dipping them into a colored powder. This process is repeated several times to achieve the correct thickness and color. The powder is sealed with a top coat to finish the look. Dip powder nails are known for their ease of application and variety of colors. They are generally odor-free and don’t require curing under UV or LED lights. However, the removal process can sometimes be more involved than other methods.
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How Long Do Nails Last For

It’s essential to remember that certain aspects, such as your daily activities, nail care regimen, and the first application’s quality, can affect how long your Polygel nails endure. Maintaining your nails will help them last as long as possible. It’s essential to treat them gently and keep them away from harsh chemicals and excessive moisture.

How Are These Nails Applied?

Polygel nails are applied using a specific process that involves several steps. Here’s a basic overview of how polygel nails are typically applied:

  • Preparation: The natural nails are cleanly shaped, and the cuticles are pushed back to create a clean canvas for the polygel application.
  • Priming: A bonding agent or primer is applied to the natural nails to help the polygel adhere properly.
  • Dual Form or Nail Tip Application (Optional): Some nail technicians might use dual forms (also known as nail molds) or tips to create the desired length and shape for the artificial nails.
  • Polygel Application: The Polygel, in a putty-like consistency, is squeezed out of the tube and applied onto the nails. Nail technicians use a brush, often dipped in a solution to prevent sticking, to shape and spread the polygel over the nail area. The process involves pressing and patting the polygel into the desired shape.
  • Curing: Once the polygel is shaped, the nails are cured under a UV or LED lamp. This hardens the polygel and makes it sturdy.
  • Shaping and Buffing: After curing, the nails are filed and buffed to refine the shape and smooth any rough edges. This step helps achieve the desired look.
  • Finishing: A topcoat is applied to add shine and protection to the polygel nails. The nails are then cured again under the UV or LED lamp.
  • Final Touches: Any excess residue is cleaned off the nails, and cuticle oil might be applied to hydrate the cuticles and surrounding skin.

The entire process requires skill and precision, often best performed by a trained nail technician. Remember that specific techniques might vary slightly based on the nail technician’s preferences and the polygel brand. Proper application is crucial to ensure the longevity and appearance of your polygel nails.

Tips to Make Your Nails Last Longer

Here are five tips to help your nails last longer:

  • Be gentle with your nails, avoiding using them for rough tasks.
  • Protect your nails by wearing gloves during cleaning or washing.
  • Don’t bite or pick at your nails to prevent damage.
  • Keep your nails and hands moisturized with lotion.
  • Visit a nail professional regularly for maintenance and touch-ups.

How to Remove Polygel Nails

Here’s a simple way to remove polygel nails:

  1. File the top layer gently.
  2. Put cotton balls on your nails after soaking them in acetone.
  3. Wrap with aluminum foil and wait 15-20 minutes.
  4. Gently push off the softened polygel with a tool.
  5. Smooth nails with a buffer and apply cuticle oil.
  6. Wash your hands after you’re done.

If unsure, it’s better to ask a professional for help.

Are Polygel Manicures Safe for Your Nails?

Yes, polygel manicures are generally safe for your nails. When done correctly, they shouldn’t harm your natural nails. However, it’s essential to follow the correct application and removal steps. If done incorrectly or removed too roughly, they could cause some damage. Getting them done by a professional or learning the proper techniques before trying them at home is a good idea. 

Can they be done at home?

Yes, polygel nails can be done at home, but it’s important to note that the application process can be more involved than regular nail polish. While doing polygel nails at home is possible, remember that it might require some practice to achieve professional-looking results. Follow the polygel kit’s instructions and take your time during each step. Before trying to do your nails yourself, you might find watching tutorials or asking advice from seasoned nail enthusiasts helpful.

Does Polygel Ruin Your Nails?

We like polygel nails because they don’t hurt or harm your real nails. If done correctly, your natural nails stay safe. To take them off, a nail expert will file the polygel to get rid of most of it. Then, they’ll use a liquid called acetone to remove the rest. After that, your nails will be ready for your next pretty nails. If you want to take off polygel by yourself, be gentle when filing. Being too rough can hurt your nails.

Pros and Cons


  • It looks pretty and natural.
  • Lightweight and comfortable.
  • Easy to shape and apply.
  • Reduced odor compared to acrylics.


  • It’s less potent than acrylics.
  • It might need more frequent touch-ups.
  • The application process takes longer.
  • It can be more expensive than other options.

How Much Do They Cost?

PolyGel nail kits can range from $55 to $150, depending on how you want your nails to look. The length and shape you choose also affect the cost. If you need to fill in your polyGel nails after a few weeks, it might cost around $80. It’s a good idea to get refills every three to four weeks.

Final Thoughts

Polygel nails offer a versatile and attractive nail designs for nail enhancements. Their blend of acrylic and gel properties provides a lightweight and comfortable feel. While they might not be as sturdy as acrylic nails, they balance flexibility and strength. Regular maintenance and proper care can help them last longer and look their best. 

Can I get nail art with Polygel?

You can create various nail art designs with polygel, like acrylic or gel nails. The flexibility and shaping capabilities of polygel make it suitable for artistic designs.

Are Polygel nails better than acrylic nails?

It depends on your preferences. Polygel nails balance acrylic and gel characteristics, being lightweight and flexible. Acrylic nails are more robust, while polygel nails provide a more natural feel.

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