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Salon Manicures: How to Choose between Dip Powder and Gel Nails

Dip Powder vs Gel Nails…Which One Is Right for You?

Cincinnati Ohio Nail Salon

It’s safe to say that getting a manicure at a salon isn’t as simple as it used to be. You're no longer just picking out what beautiful color you want to use. In these modern times, you have to decide what technique you want your nail tech to perform as well.


It can rattle your brain looking through each one, wondering to yourself…”which one is right for me, and what is the difference between them?” You have every right to be confused as “dip powder” and “gel” are just random words to you. 


Don’t let these terms scare you. Powder nails and gel nails are the two most popular techniques to get and they are a huge improvement from just receiving a regular polish manicure. Whether you have strong nails and you want them to look fresh, or if you're struggling with brittle nails that need a more sturdy structure…these techniques will give you the nail confidence you deserve.


How to decide between Gel Nails and Dip Powder 


There are key differences between gel nails and dip powder nails, which will help you identify which one is best for you. The best way for you to decide is to understand your lifestyle, your nail condition and how you want your nails to look overall.


Gel nail polish

This technique offers a flexible feel, while having a strong coating on the nail to prevent your nails from breaking. Gel nails are great for people who have strong healthy nails, but want them to look fresh and have extra protection from their everyday life.


Gel polish is applied like regular nail polish but is cured using a UV light. Once the polish is cured, there is no drying time required like normal polish. Gel nails are more sought out for than regular polish because they are more durable, allowing them to last about 2-3 weeks.[1]


Overall it can be a huge money and time saver as you no longer have to visit the salon as frequently. The time for each appointment is cut down significantly because of the fact that there isn’t any drying time for the gel nail application.


Dip Powder Nails

This technique offers the look and feel of acrylics without needing the extended nail tips. Dip powder nails are great for people who have weaker, brittle nails and need extra protection to ensure their nails will not break. This is also best suited for people who are rough on their natural nails, or have a very hands-on job.


Dip powder is applied to nails by using a nail resin (aka nail glue) on the nails, then dipping  them into the colored powder. This means that the intense-smelling liquid monomer that is used when doing acrylic nails isn’t needed when using dip-powder.[2] It is important to note that the color powder can be poured directly onto the nail instead of your nail being dipped into the powder as an alternative method. 


This can provide you with comfort knowing that your nails will not break when you're doing your hands-on job or when your brittle nails need a little extra protection. The best part is that they can last 4-5 weeks, allowing you to not be in the salon nearly as much.


Pros of Gel Nails vs Dip Powder


The pros of receiving a gel manicure include:

 -They can be more sanitary than dip powder[2]

- Gel has a flexible feel, which makes it look like they are just normal nail polish[2]

- It has a wider range of colors and you can receive designs on your nails[1]


The reason gel nails can be more sanitary than dip powder is because the color is being brushed onto your nails rather than dipped into a powder that other clients have used in the past. If there are any cuts or wounds on your fingers and they are dipped into a powder, it can lead to a possible infection.[2]


Nail techs can pour the powder directly onto the nails for a more sanitary approach to avoid this possible infection. Here at Salon Noir, our nail tech uses this method to insure the protection of every client during the dip process.


The pros of dip powder nails are:

 -They last longer than gel nails, allowing you to spend less time in the salon[2]

-Dip Powder will dry immediately in between coats whereas you have to wait for the nails to be cured with a UV light with gel nails[2]

-They are more durable than gel nails, allowing you the comfort of knowing that they will stay in place until they need redone [2]


Tips on how to make your dip powder or gel manicure last longer


Good news is that when you are caring for your new gel manicure or your dip powder nails, both have very similar care instructions. Nothing is worse than when you're not due back for a salon visit yet and you crack your nails or have one of them lifting.


Even though both of them are very sturdy techniques, it’s still important to be gentle on your nails. You can’t be using your new nails as tools to open up things. It’s enticing to do so because you feel like your nails can handle anything, but be nice to them as they can only handle so much.


Hot water and chemicals are the enemy! Try your best to wear gloves when you need to clean up your everyday messes. This is to ensure your nails won’t break down or become weak before your next appointment.[3]


Using cuticle oil regularly will help your nails stay hydrated, which is the key to make sure your nails are not chipping prematurely. Nails naturally start to dry out like your hair. If you're not nourishing them with hydration, you will surely end up with broken nails.[4]


Lastly, When your nails start to grow out, make sure you're filing them down and not cutting them. If you cut them you may snap off half of your polish, which will leave you unhappy about your nail’s condition. [4]


Get pampered at Salon Noir with a customized manicure


We have an amazing nail technician at Salon Noir that is qualified to give you any technique you desire. Whether you're looking for a more natural look or a huge nail transformation, she will make all of your nail dreams come true.


Click the link down below to receive the nail transformation you have always been looking for!







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