Do your nails chip almost immediately after applying polish? Would you rather not put your hands under a UV light for a long-lasting gel manicure? If you answered yes to either question, a dip powder manicure may be right for you.
Chances are you've seen dip powder manicures on Instagram or TikTok. There's good reason why they're all over your feed these days. They last a heck of a long time and don't require UV light to cure. (FYI: It's called a dip powder manicure because you literally dip your fingers into a pot of colored powder.)
"A dip powder manicure is a perfect combination of acrylic polymer powders and a more old school resin base like the ones used with silk wraps," explains Anastasia Totty, LeChat Nails educator. "It's not necessarily a new technique, but a very popular service in the modern salon."
The biggest benefit of dip powder manicures? Longevity says Dasha Minina, certified and licensed nail technician and founder of Maxus Nails and Beautician List. "If done properly, they can last up to a month."
There are some new at-home kits that make it easier than ever to try a dip powder manicure. But there are some tips and tricks of the trade.
"When applying your dip powder manicure at home just make sure you follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer," says Totty. "It's pretty easy once you practice a few times."
Most dip powder nail kits come with a bonder (aka non-acid primer) to prep your nails and ensure good application, a base coat, a chemical activator that dries the dip base, a top coat and a variety of colors. Start by cleaning your nails to get rid of any dirt and oils. Then apply the bonder so that the powder adheres to your nails. Next brush on the base coat. Then dip your nail into the powder, brushing off any excess.
You may need to use two or three coats of powder to achieve your desired opacity. Apply the base coat between coats of powder. Once you're done with color, apply the activator to harden the powder and let it dry for a couple of minutes. Finish off with the top coat.
"Lighter, sparkly colors are easier to apply and won't show too many flaws for a beginner," says Totty. "You can also apply lacquer over a clear dip manicure so you can use what you already have and don't have to buy too many colors."
Removal is important as well. "Make sure you soak it off properly and don't damage your natural nails," says Totty. Oh, and don't do them too often because they can cause nail thinning due to excessive filing.
Here are the dip powder manicure kits worth your money.
Image via Imaxtree
LeChat Nails Perfect Match Professional French Dip Kit, $95
Use this at-home dip powder manicure kit to try your hand at an updated French manicure. (Think reverse French or negative space French.) Your mani will last for up to four weeks and your nails will look ultra shiny the entire time.
Nailboo Dip Kit - Pro, $105
This at-home dip powder manicure kit comes with everything you need to give yourself a salon-quality mani that lasts. You even get to choose six colored powders (hello brights and glitters) so you won't get bored.
Red Carpet Manicure Color Dip Starter Kit, $34.99
Dip your toes into the dip mani pool with this kit that's great for beginners. It comes with a base coat, an activator, a top coat and a classic red powder that looks good on everyone.
DipWell Dip Nail Starter Kit - Pastel Collection, $54.97
Get ready for summer with this at-home dip powder manicure kit that comes with lilac periwinkle and light blue powders. This kit will arm you with all the tools to master the art of applying powder to your nails.