Acetone and Acrylics: How Well Do You Know Your Nail Terminology? - Nails Principle

Acetone and Acrylics: How Well Do You Know Your Nail Terminology?

Acetone and Acrylics: How Well Do You Know Your Nail Terminology?

Getting your nails done is a great way to spoil yourself and be expressive. But have you had any idea of the meticulousness and knowledge that go into the average manicure? Like a recently learned subject, nail care can seem complicated at first. 

So let's break it down. We'll start by discussing all things nails and cover basic definitions to give you a better understanding of the nail care world.

First Up: The Basics

We'll begin with the basics of your nails. Each nail has four key components: nail bed, nail plate, cuticle, and eponychium. The nail bed is actually the part of the nail to which the nail plate is fastened. It's necessary for bone and skin.

nail plate cuticles

Both the cuticle and eponychium are common mix-ups in nail terminology. The eponychium is the visible lip of skin at the base of the nail; this area should never be cut, but rather gently pushed down. Cutting the eponychium can lead to harmful bacteria entering the nail bed and finger. The cuticle is just dead tissue that is on top of your nail plate. It isn't really helpful for nails, so it can be safely removed. Once the cuticle is totally removed or filed, the technician can go to work! Visiting your nail technician every couple of weeks is a great way to maintain your cuticle care, but it's an even better idea to practice nail care at home. Take care of your hands and cuticles each night by washing your hands and using a nail brush to scrape out all the dirt on them. Afterward, apply some moisturizer and cuticle balm to prevent drying and cracking.

Key Terms Everyone Should Know

To make sure that you receive precisely what you desire from your next salon appointment, it's important to become familiar with some this vs that definitions. These examples can assist you convey to your customers what they want and show them that you understand their needs.

Acetone vs. Non-Acetone Removers

Solvent-based removers, unlike the name indicates, are formulated with acetone; they work great for removing polish fairly quickly, although some drying may result. Nonetheless, not all removers have ethyl acetate or methyl ethyl ketone as the active ingredient, which breaks down polish. Non-acetone removers are gentler, safer, and more natural if you're removing old nail polish and coating your nails for a new color. 

Gel vs. Acrylic

Gel polish is either soft and hard gel. Soft gel is created with a thin resin-like material and has to be removed with an acetone remover. Hard gel is thought to be more permanent and durable. This type of gel is best removed using an electric file because it is unmovable when soaked. Gelish, Shellac, Bio-Sculpture, and Vinylux are three types of resin-based gel polishes for nails. These come in different strengths, wear times, colors, removal methods, and prices. The curing process varies by lamp for each type of gel polish.

On the other hand, acrylic is a powder and liquid mixture that produces a hard plastic-like layer on the nail plate. It serves as an extension of the natural nails. Acrylic can be removed with an acetone remover.

Longer-Wear vs Traditional Polish

Longer-wear polishes combine traditional polish elements with a few of the well-liked gel components to build a special, best of-both-worlds hybrid. You can apply both durability and a seamless application. Standard wax chips easier than longer-wear and are not typically used in salons. These two polishes have variations in dry time and wear and tear.


You need also to be aware of the differences between various nail shapes. Ballerina and coffin are technically identical to one another due to their elongated shape with a square tip. Almond resembles stiletto, but they're connected due to the fact that their rounded tip is identical. Oval nail shape consists of the nail having an oval tip. One of the sides of the nail is rounded, leaving one end of the nail's point as a half circle. Squarish is squared with rounded corners.

Easy Ways to Protect Your Health at the Salon

With the public health emergency that is currently ongoing, you may be wondering: How can I stay safe? is it safe to go get my nails done? Taking these precautions, beauty technicians and other guests can comfortably go on getting manicures and pedicures without fearing for their safety.

The American Center for Disease Control recommends the following safety measures:

  • Remember to wash your hands and do not leave exposed coughs or sneezes. Adhere to the guidelines of a safe cloth facial covering. 
  • Make sure to clean it after your beauty salon visit. 
  • Clean and sanitize your bag, phone, and keys after your beauty salon visit. 
  • Feel free to ask your nail technician to sanitize and disinfect your manicure station and or pedicure bowl and chair.
  • Stay home if you detect any signs of illness. Monitor your health consistently.

By following these precautions, you can reduce your own chances of contracting and spreading this illness. If you or those around you are immunocompromised, you should avoid crowded public areas or limit your overall exposure by avoiding high-traffic times within your facility.

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