Saving Money on Acrylic Nails

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October 13, 2011

Bin with dozens of bottles of nail polish.The best thing to do, is take some good vitamins. Also, use some good products such as a base and top coat to embrace the nails you have. Acrylic ruins your nails and fungus can get up there quite quickly.


If you use a good base coat, any nail polish, and a good quick drying top coat (Sally Hansen in the red clear bottle or Seche Vite at beauty supply stores), you'll save tons of money that way. The top coats are not like they used to be. They actually work, no more sheet marks. The only downside to not having acrylics is the nail polish doesn't last as long. But that's the fun, changing the colors!

If you must use acrylics, use Sally's beauty or online retailers like Head2ToeBeauty, they have name brand nail polishes very cheap and all acrylic nail supplies, even with shipping they are still better deals than local stores.

Source: Nail polish addict, over 200+ bottles and have given up acrylics for the health of my nails!

By Michawn from CA

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Here are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community.

December 29, 2006

Will getting an acrylic overlay mess up my beautiful natural nails?

Lisa from Nesbit, MS


December 30, 20060 found this helpful

I used silk wraps and acrylic liquid on my nails for a year and a half, because I didn't think my own long nails would survive my new job. I was a slave to repairing them. I quit doing that in October.


After several weeks of breakage, my new nails are growing out fine. I don't think the time and money you spend protecting real nails is worth it. My new philosophy is "they'll grow back".

By denise w (Guest Post)
December 31, 20060 found this helpful

im a retired manicurist and the answer is yes. when ever you file the top of nail it will cause damage and if you wear them too long for years you will be left with indentations in the nail bed so glue ons are great for a party but not acrylics or wraps!

By Debra in Colorado (Guest Post)
January 2, 20071 found this helpful

Your nails need air. Covering them weakens them, if you have beautiful natural nails rejoice! Keep them strong by eating lots of vegtables and jello your required water does'nt hurt either.

By Doggy (Guest Post)
January 2, 20070 found this helpful

PLEASE don't do it : ((

By becca (Guest Post)
January 2, 20071 found this helpful

absolutely not! they will not "ruin" your nails!!! If you have the proper nail tech working on you. I am a nail technition...for over 6 years now and i have removed many of my clients acrylics that they had on for many years, and as soon as the nail grows out you have the same nails you had before you put acrylics!


if you have nice nails, just take care of them. if you want other option because you are not happy with your natural nails go for acrylic.

By (Guest Post)
January 2, 20070 found this helpful

I had wonderful, strong, healthy nails until I put acrylic nails on one summer for some weddings I had going on. My nails have never recovered. They break and splt at the slightest provocation. I fear my nails will never be the same, despite taking vitamins and supplements specifically for them. I would never recommend acrylic nails.

January 2, 20070 found this helpful

I wouldn't do it. You would have to maintain them which means getting them filled or they will look tacky as they grow out.

January 6, 20070 found this helpful

It's really just common sense :) (no offense) but yes your nail will be damaged when the acrylics are removed, but the damaged part will grow out and the new natural nail grows in..just like hair. It doesnt last forever.

By laura (Guest Post)
May 27, 20070 found this helpful

the acrylic nails ruined my natural nail, the acrylic nails have been off 3 years and my nail are soft and very sensitive.

July 2, 20070 found this helpful

in a word Yes--if you have beautiful natural nails--it would be best to keep them natural. Not only do acrylics weaken natural nails--if you do not keep up with having them filled-they can lift and you can get a really nasty infection under the artificial nail

By helen (New Zealand) (Guest Post)
July 19, 20073 found this helpful

For Debra in Colorado... Why would your natural nails need air?? Nails are dead, waste products of the body and do not require air. Covering does not weaken them either. What weakens nails is ill health, certain drugs and damage to matrix.


Weak nails can also be inherited. As for acrylics or gels ruining the nails, it is the bad NAIL TECHNICIAN who put them on that ruins the natural nail, not the product itself!

By Lisa (Guest Post)
December 9, 20070 found this helpful

If your unsure about acrylic or gels just start using sally hansen nail polishes my nails have grown heaps just by applying either sally hansen maximum growth (gold bottle) or sally hansen diamond strength (silver bottle) as a base coat. I think its better with you own nail nails

By Nette (Guest Post)
February 13, 20080 found this helpful

I'm sitting here soaking my acrylic-coverd nails as I type, regretting the day I got them in the first place. On the other hand, this is (about) the 6th or 7th time I've had acrylic on my nails so -shrugs-. I'm learning that this feeling is part of a pattern with me and "fake" (or chemically covered REAL) nails: ecstatic the day for a while--that is if they're done right--and angry just as soon I'm bored with them.


Why do we women go through so many lengths to be "beautiful" (as if to imply only long fake nails are beautiful)? In any case I'm not to sure if there was an initial question to answer, or statement to address, as I cannot locate the origin of this post. But I will say that I'm a believer in the "to each his own" philosophy (or is it a philosophy?) so I refuse to speak for or against any1 getting acrylic overlays but I will say that you'd better be sure about wanting them otherwise you deal with the painful task of removing them.

By Curious, Dublin (Guest Post)
February 19, 20080 found this helpful

Hi can anyone tell me if gel overlays would be a better option to my short, not so healthy nails? I would like them to grow ( & not have to glue the extensions on ). I'm hoping maybe if I get the overlays on my short nails they will eventually grow up & I will have naturally long looking nails, with the gel overlay of course!




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February 28, 20080 found this helpful

(submitted via email)
When I had nails on, they took my whole real nail off and it hurt really bad and now I can't get nails no more.


By Melissa (Guest Post)
April 9, 20080 found this helpful

Do not believe anyone who says acrylics will not ruin your nails- THEY WILL! I had acrylics put on for two months. I got them filled every two weeks. I decided to take them off on Monday and my nails are soft, weak and brittle. From just eight weeks! I went and bought some cuticle oil and sally hansen Hard As Nails product. I am hoping that my nails go back to normal-strong and healthy. I am regretting the day I ever got the acrylics no matter how pretty they were.-You will too...

By Melissa (Guest Post)
April 9, 20080 found this helpful

Do not believe anyone who says acrylics will not ruin your nails- THEY WILL! I had acrylics put on for two months. I got them filled every two weeks. I decided to take them off on Monday and my nails are soft, weak and brittle. From just eight weeks! I went and bought some cuticle oil and sally hansen Hard As Nails product. I am hoping that my nails go back to normal-strong and healthy. I am regretting the day I ever got the acrylics no matter how pretty they were.-You will too.

By nicola (Guest Post)
May 28, 20080 found this helpful

Coming from a professional beauty therapist, I should known whether or not acrylic and gel overlays are damaging. In my personal opinion, acrylic is more damaging then gel. Gel is one of these things that needs to be maintained in order for them to be a success. However I do feel that gel or acrylic is never the best way to go. It will also change the way your nails grow, and, once removed, it will take manicures and constant TLC to get them back to normal. The nails can become brittle and weak, this is simply caused by lack of oxygen to the nail, as well as water damage through the gel, and acrylic.

By Belinda (Guest Post)
June 6, 20080 found this helpful

Years ago my natural nails were long and beautiful, but I made the mistake of getting acrylics. I wore them for several years, and to my horror my nails were extremely damaged! I had indentions in my nail beds, and they were very weak. It took almost a year before my nails were strong again, and guess what? I did it again! Nuts huh? I am now recovering from that mistake and wondered if overlays would help protect my nails, but from reading the above comments that will be a mistake as well. I guess I will just keep my natural nails, and hope they will get stronger. The one thing that is frustrating for me is not being able to keep polish on for a long time. With acrylic nails, the polish stays on long and they look so pretty, but with natural nails after a day or two the polish is fading, and chipping so I typically go bare, or put on clear polish. I miss the colors, but at least I have my natural nails and they are getting healthier each day with Sally Hansen's hard as nails.

By starchild71 (Guest Post)
September 30, 20080 found this helpful

There is alot of misinformation out there. Acrylics do not damage your nails, nail technicians do. What type of salon are you frequenting to have your nails applied and filled? Natural nails should only be lightly buffed to remove the shine and oils before acrylic application. More than likely, nails are being damaged due to improper use of an electric file or "drill". Also, it is important when removing acrylic to soak them off. Do not let technicians pry the acrylic off of your nails. This will take unnecessary layers of your natural nail off, causing injury to the nailbed, which could result in paper thin nails and damage to your nails. Make sure you ask questions when visiting your nail salon. Also ask your technician if the implements they are using are clean and sterile!

By Danette (Guest Post)
October 17, 20080 found this helpful

The people who say that acrylics don't ruin your nails because your nail grows out and when it does it's just as healthy as before are right.
But how long do you wait until the entire nail has grown out? From cuticle to tip is minimum 3-6 months of ugly nails and then you wait to go a tip out.

My advise is just don't go the route of acrylics I did them for a month and had them removed in July and still haven't even had them fully grow out. Trust me you will be dealing for the consequences for a very long time. Beautiful natural nails are not for lazy impatient people. They require constant care and attention but if you make the effort the benefits will be rewarding.

November 1, 20080 found this helpful

I heard bio gel is natural and the healthiest for your nails. I've taken off my acrylics and my own nails are a mess. Not only weak and cracked but big indents in the nail bed itself. I'm embarrassed to show them....would the bio gel be ok long term?

By VictoriA (Guest Post)
February 16, 20090 found this helpful

I have to say I am thinking of getting acrylics and none of you are helping. I am not for or against them. I am trying them today with a friend who has gotten them before and her nails are beautiful and I am jealous. So why she wants to get acrylics I don't know. But I do have to say one thing, I just learned about what cells are important and dead and what not. And your nails are dead, but I have no clue if acrylics can hurt them or not! THANKS!

By kiiwii86 guest post (Guest Post)
February 28, 20090 found this helpful

I wore acrylic nails for 4yrs off & and on. I took them off thinking they would grow out and put them back on when I got tired of my nails looking like crap. To make a long story short it took me getting pregos just to grow out all the damage bcuz I was scared the acrylic would harm my my unborn child. And now I'm proud of my healthy strong acrylic free nails and my healthy baby boy of

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January 9, 2005

I get the Kiss brand nails from Walmart and they end up coming off in about a week. I'd lke to reuse the nails but you can see the glue. Is there any way to remove the glue from the nails?



By ma (Guest Post)
January 27, 20050 found this helpful

i use the same nails. only i put them on with superglue and they last 2 weeks...however, how should i take them off? :)

By MARIAH (Guest Post)
October 12, 20050 found this helpful


By Becky (Guest Post)
November 15, 20050 found this helpful

SUPER GLUE!! gurl, u wnt them to stay on bad.. never uses superglue on your real nails, it ruins them,, :) but anyway,, i am having my acrylic nails put on professionally on saturday 26th, and i wondered how long they last without infills?? i got told it is about 6-8 weeks, it this true, and do your real nails grow underneath??

By Christie (Guest Post)
February 20, 20070 found this helpful

Visit or These are just like Kiss, except they sell glues that will let your nails stay on for L-O-N-G-E-R! And if you really like the French look, go acrylic. I've worn acrylic non-stop for years, and my nails are as fast growing and as strong as they were before I even started! I also love acrylics because by the time I let themm grow out, my natural nails are all grown out beautiful, and i can paint them prettily! So go ahead and try. If you don't remove the acrylics wrong, then your won't have nail damage.

By Makenize (Guest Post)
May 15, 20070 found this helpful

all you need to do is soak your hands is warm water for twenty to thirty minutes

By samantha (Guest Post)
July 7, 20070 found this helpful

i have professional acrilic nails on, and i want them off what do i use??

By Louise (Guest Post)
July 30, 20070 found this helpful

iv had acrylic nails done, and was going to get them infilled before i go on holiday, but i went bowling and 3 of them are coming off at the sides, if i get infiills will this matter? or will i have to have them re-done completely?

By jos. (Guest Post)
February 12, 20080 found this helpful

I allowed my hairdresser to convince me that it was okay for her to use Nail Glue for extensions to stay in my hair. Now, after meticulously removing the extensions from my hair, I am left with hard clumps of my own hair where the Nail Glue was used. How do I get it out? I have tried deep conditioning with both conditioner and hot oil (separately) with no result. Please, please. How do I get it out?

By yasmine (Guest Post)
February 29, 20080 found this helpful

I went with my mum to get my nails done for the first time in my life and then 1 week and 5 days I decided to take them off. I took off the tips but the acrylics are still on and I dont' know how to get them off. plz help.

By Sachiko (Guest Post)
November 17, 20080 found this helpful

You can use acetone a nail polish remover containing acetone. Hope this helped.

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September 23, 2010

Can anyone tell me how often you should have acrylic nails removed? I have had them now for about seven months and was told in July that I needed to have them taken off and a new set put on which I did. I then went in for a fill last week and was told that I would need another new set next time I go. I thought that you could just get a fill every couple of weeks and that would be it until I had them taken off. If I have to have a new set every couple of months this will be quite costly.

By j evans from UK

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July 28, 2009

My husband recently gave me a gift certificate to do something to my nails at a local spa. The lady told him to do it for $75 (since he did not have a clue how much to buy). When I first saw the certificate I can't describe what rolled through my mind that $75 could have bought. But I thanked him and went for my nail treatment.

It has now been a couple of weeks and I need to either have a "fill in" or soak them off. I find that I like having nails which I have never been able to grow, but there is no way I would ever pay this every 2-3 weeks. I do still have a little on my certificate that I have not spent but what after that? Does anyone know of a way to "fill in" that it is not expensive?

By Meemaw


July 29, 20090 found this helpful

You might try going to a beauty/cosmetology school and having them filled there this is always much cheaper. The students are supervised by liscenced instructors. Otherwise you can purchase acrylic nail fillers, and kits from a beauty supply store but the quality may be inferior to what you would get from a salon.


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July 29, 20090 found this helpful

You need to do as I do, a friend told me about putting "Hard as nails" finger nail polish on my nails. They would not grow, and were easy to break. So I keep it on my nails. It really works, protects the nails. I use the clear polish, good luck.

July 29, 20090 found this helpful

Go have your nails filled the first one or two times and watch very closely how they do it. then go to Sally Beauty Supply and buy the powder, liquid, no lift, brush cleaner, brushes, and files. Go to walmart for the nippers. for $50-$75 you can get the supplies and can do your nails for a year. I have been doing my own for about 15 years and it takes a couple of hours every 2-3 weeks. It just takes practice.

July 30, 20090 found this helpful

The fill-ins are only about $15.00 to have the same nail girl do them for you. When you originally had the nails put on, that is the expensive part. The upkeep, like I said, is only about $15.00 every other week.


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July 30, 20090 found this helpful

You could go in & have just the nail polish done again & it extends the time a little. I used to get my nails done, & I would purchase a bottle of the nail color. After about 2 weeks, I would repaint my own nails & I could get a little more time.
It's so expensive though, that it is one of the things I felt I had to give up. I really miss those nails, plus my own nails have been super soft for almost 3 years now from the salon nails.

July 30, 20090 found this helpful

Wal-Mart sells acrylic fill in stuff for less than $10. Maybe get that kit to fill in, then after it is dry use the rough side of an emery board (about $1 for a pack of several) to smooth it out. Then buffer and repaint the area to match the acrylic nails. I've tried this before with nail glue itself and the results were similar; nail glue is cheap as well.

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July 9, 2018

If a full set of acrylics is applied to your nails with no use of the plastic tips, should you be charged the full price?

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Bronze Feedback Medal for All Time! 102 Feedbacks
August 15, 2010

What is the difference between gel nails and acrylic nails? Can anyone give me advice on which to get? My real nails keep splitting and breaking and look terrible. I am looking for low maintenance nails that won't break and will look good, but I do not want to get nail diseases. Thanks.

By Dena Roberts from Winnipeg, Canada

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August 10, 2011

This is a page about applying acrylic nails. Applying your own acrylic nails can save you money over going to the nail salon. If done correctly, they can be just as durable.

Photo of a woman's hands with acrylic nails on.

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