Acrylics & SNS. Which One Is Better?

Although going to the nail salon is supposed to be an enjoyable experience, the moment when you’re asked to select between different nail options can be quite overwhelming. 

Especially if you’re new to the nail world, it’s easier for you to get confused between different manicure terms. For example, SNS, Acrylic and Gel-polish. 

Our blog is a great place to start doing research before choosing a service that’s right for you. 

This time, we’re comparing the two most popular nail enhancements, SNS and Acrylics. Keep reading to find out how are they different in formula, application, look, price, durability and health complication. 

If you looking for the difference between SNS & Shellac, please visit this BLOG POST of ours.


What is SNS? 
SNS stands for Signature Nail System, and is actually a brand for power dipping nail system. SNS is a collection of pigmented powders which give colours and strength to your nails. 


How SNS is applied? 
To apply SNS, the nail technician will brush on a layer of bonding agent, then immediately dip your nails inside the coloured powder of your choice. This filling process is repeated 4-5 times to create required form and strength. To seal off, an activator is applied, then the SNS nails are quickly air died with a fan. Unlike gel-polish (Shellac), SNS doesn’t require curing under the UV lamp. 


What are the nail length options for SNS?  
SNS is suitable for short, medium to long length of nails. 

SNS can be applied directly on top of your natural nails (which we usually refer to as an ‘overlay’) or it could be applied on top of extensions, also known as tips (which we usually refer to as an ‘SNS full-set) if extra length is required. However, both an overlay and a full-set will satisfy your need for stronger nails. 


What are the prices for SNS? 
At The Nail Bar, dip colour on real nails start from $45 an appointment. Full-set dipping colour starts from $65. For more information about the price, Click Here


How long does SNS last? 
After the appointment, SNS nails could last around 2-4 weeks (subject to the level of care and the environment) before the next refill. 


Are there health complications related to SNS I should be worried about?SNS is a very healthy option to naturally strengthen and add length to your nails. Firstly, SNS doesn’t require curing under the UV lamp, so your hands aren’t at risk of anti-aging effect. Secondly, SNS has less fumes and tend to be orderless, which make it a healthier choice in the long-term. 

SNS Nails

Now, onto Acrylic. What is it? 

Acrylic is the industry standard for artificial nails, that combine a polymer (powder) and a monomer (liquid) to create a strong, colourless layer on top of your nails when it cures.


How Acrylic is applied?
For clients that want added length, artificial tips are first glued to the tip of the natural nail. Then, the nail technician will dip a brush in a monomer to wet the brush. Immediately after, the brush is dipped inside a jar of polymer (powder) to create a small bead that is used to blend together the natural nail and the artificial tips. Like SNS, acrylic nails harden after 20-30 seconds of being air dried. 


What are the nail length options for Acrylic? 
Acrylic is best for medium, long to very long length of nails. 


What are the prices for Acrylic? 
At our salons, an acrylic overlay (without tips) appointment starts from $45. Acrylic full set (with extension tips) starts from $55 an appointment. For more information about the price, Click Here


How long does Acrylic last? 
Acrylic nail is the longest lasting enhancement available. Acrylic nails could last for as long as a month if practice proper care. However, an acrylic refill is recommended every 2-3 weeks to maintain polished and professional look. 


Are there health complications related to Acrylic I should be worried about?
Acrylic completely protect your hands from anti-aging effect since it doesn’t require curing under the UV lamp. However, acrylic contain more fumes than SNS, which make it a less healthy option. To prevent inhaling fumes, make sure to always wear a mask when attending your appointment. 

Acrylic Nails Adelaide

Finally, which one is better? 
There isn’t a better option between SNS and Acrylic. It’s entirely up to your interpretation about which manicure best meet your needs. Here’s a recap of the pros and cons of both nail types. We hope this help find your choice!

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