Are Fake Nails As Damaging As Everyone Suggests?

Fake nails have the power to redefine your identity, offering endless ways to express your style and creativity. However with frequent trips to the nail salon, this can seriously end up damaging your nails.

In this blog, we will explore the truth about fake nails and discover how to enjoy them without damaging your natural nails, ensuring they stay healthy and in their best condition.

How damaging are fake nails? 

Fake nails, also known as artificial nails, acrylics or nail extensions, are pretty much nails that aren’t real, or they need to be applied by a professional nail technician. These types of nails are permanent nail solutions that are bonded to your natural nails and can last for weeks at a time. 

The actual product when you get a manicure doesn’t do the damage. The damage comes from improper prep, application, and most importantly, the removal of your fake nails. Factors such as the cleanliness of the salon, or the attention to detail by your nail tech all come into play. Generally speaking, if your nail salon is unusually cheap, looks dirty, or your nails start to hurt during any point of a manicure, then the chances are it isn’t a salon with high-standards.

To understand how to see if fake nails will ruin your real nails is to assess the condition of your natural nails. If your nails are brittle, thin and weak, then it’s a sign that certain types of fake nails, like acrylics, could make things worse instead of better.

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Types of Fake Nails


There are a variety of fake nails available, and choosing the perfect style of fake nails involves considering multiple elements, such as durability, duration, and how much damage you are willing to possibly get. Here is a guide to help you decide which type of fake nails would be the most suitable for you:


Acrylic Nails: Most Popular Choice

Acrylic nails are nail enhancements formulated with a mix of powder and liquid monomer. Nail technicians will then sculpt the formula onto your natural nail and over a nail tip, allowing it to harden into a durable and long lasting nail extension. 

Acrylic nails are well known for their strength, as they can be shaped, filed and then painted with various nail art designs. This makes them a popular choice for those wanting length, durability and affordability.


Gel Nails: Healthier than Acrylics

Gel nails are a type of manicure that uses a special type of nail polish – gel polish. This nail polish is applied to natural nails and then cured using UV light to create a shiny, durable manicure. The gel nails process usually involves three products, a gel base coat, the gel colour and then a gel coat to finish. 

The process is generally a lot quicker than acrylic extensions, and are much less damaging. If applied correctly, they are considered a healthier version of acrylics so it is important to find a professional nail technician. 


Shellac Nails: Quick & Easy to Remove

Shellac is a hybrid of gel and traditional polish that was developed by nail polish brand Creative Nail Design (CND). The benefits of shellac is a high-gloss colour, that will stay chip-free for longer. This means your nails have a protective barrier which allows your nails to grow and become strong.

A manicure with shellac nail polish can last up to two weeks, or even longer, with a stunning finish. It has an acrylic base which is activated under a UV lamp, and it is much softer than gel nails. Generally, shellac is considered to be gentler on nails because of how quick and easy it is to remove.


SNS Nails: Safer & Quicker to Get Done

SNS nails, also called “dip powder nails” is a manicure that involves painting your nails with a base coat then dipping your nails into a pigmented powder. This powder acts as an extra layer of protection for your natural nails and doesn’t require UV light to cure them. As a result, dip manicures can be safer as you’re not exposing your hands to the UV and can be a much quicker manicure to get done.

On average, SNS can last up to three weeks before it starts to chip or lift, which is far longer than gels. However, SNS tends to cost a bit more and leave a thicker feel on your nail. 


BIAB Manicure: Protects Against Breakage

A BIAB manicure, which stands for Builder in a Bottle, is a gel-like nail polish which is specifically designed to add strength and structure to your natural nails. It works very similar to gel polish, however it has a thicker formula which protects your natural nails against breakage, enabling you to grow out your natural nails to the length you desire.

BIAB can last up to three weeks, sometimes four weeks with proper care and maintenance. Like acrylics, BIAB can be infilled which minimises damage to your natural nails, and also saves you time and money as you don’t need to completely soak them off every salon visit. 


Press-On Nails: The Least Damaging Fake Nails

A more affordable option to fake nails are press on nails. These nails are exactly what they sound like – nails which you can press onto your natural nails at home. These types of nails can last up to 2 weeks at a time and do not damage your nails the same way acrylic extensions can, which makes them a popular and safe choice.

There are many reasons why press on nails are a better option. No matter how much you love the look of fake nails, it’s super hard to keep up with the maintenance of them. Press-on nails offer convenience and simplicity that fake nails often can’t match. With press-ons, you can achieve stylish and long lasting nails without the hassle of frequent salon visits or ultimately putting your natural nails at risk.

Is it better to have long or short nails under press on nails?

To ensure the longest-lasting press-ons, it’s important to trim your natural nails before applying fake nails. This step is important because when your natural nails are trimmed to an appropriate length, it provides a smooth and flat surface for the fake nails to stick to.

Trimming your nails also helps prevent any lifting or uneven application of the press-ons, which can lead to breaks and even end up with them falling off within a matter of days. By keeping your natural nails neatly trimmed, you not only provide a secure base for the press-ons but also minimise the risk of them catching.

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What happens if you leave fake nails on too long?

Regular maintenance and upkeep is essential for looking after your fake nails. Leaving long periods of time between your sets can cause serious implications for your natural nails. This can include yellowing of the nails, peeling and splitting, and even in worst cases, nail fungus. This happens when water gets trapped underneath the acrylic and breaks down the natural nail.

The rule with acrylics is to infill your nails every two to three weeks depending on how fast your nails grow. The longer you wait, the more chances you have for the acrylics to lift and cause you problems.

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How do you fix fake nail damage?

Fake nail damage can happen for a multitude of reasons, from accidental knocks to improper application or removal, or just general wear and tear over time. It’s always a sad day when it happens, but breaks are inevitable. If it’s a minor issue, you can often tackle it at home using nail glue or repair kits. However, for more serious damage, seeking professional help may be necessary. 

If your nails suffer damage after acrylics, it’s crucial to hold off on getting acrylics again until your natural nails have had enough time to grow out. During this break, it’s the perfect opportunity to apply a nail treatment. This allows your nails to rebuild their strength and vitality before you get a fresh set.

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Best Press-On Nails For Every Occasion


Having nice nails shouldn’t break the bank. That’s why here at Invogue and NailHQ, we have a diverse range of affordable, long lasting press on nails. We understand that beauty should be accessible to all, which is why we’ve created a diverse range of styles that cater to every taste and occasion. 

All our press on nails come complete with nail glue, ensuring you a hassle-free application and long lasting wear. Shop our false nails now and find your new fav set of nails that not only enhances your look but also keeps your natural nails healthy and strong.