Nails Cosmetics

2021 Nail Extensions Designs, Types, Prices, & How to Apply Nail Extensions?

Everything you need to know about Nail Extensions

Nail extensions are a part of the ancient culture of Chinese which is used to represent long nails as a representation of status. Chinese were deeply influenced by the idea of having longer nails which they considered as a beauty of their body part and thus since that time till today, we are seeing nail extensions.

Nail Extensions Designs infographics
Nail Extensions Designs infographic

Why nail extensions have been trending in 2020-2021?

The reason why nail extensions have been considered to be famous and popular is that in today’s generation we all are connected with a media platform that contains the majority of the content about beauty and care which includes nail extensions and from such media platform it is being followed by the celebrities and advertisements which keep the nail extension to be promoted and thus it is always to be seen and is always to be in trend and being popular. This is why they are famous and in trend.

What is a nail extension? 

The term nail extension means they are an extra artificial nail to be applied to the original nail to make it look longer in size, and making it look in attractive shape which adds beauty to the fingertips. To add toughness and durability, nail extensions are covered with acrylic and fiberglass. There are many color types available in nail extensions as well such as ombre nail color.

What are the shapes available in the nail extension?

There are main types of shapes that are available in nail extension. 

  1. Tip Nail Extensions

They are a flat and similar structure like is an original shape that remains flat but the length is increased.

  1. Form Nail Extensions

They are cut and shaped into pointed like talon structure which makes them look like sharp long nails. They are not flat at all and are also extending the length of the original nail.

Why do we use nail extensions? 

The only reason why we nail extension is that having a longer nail is what women love to have and it and a long nail are what represents care and beauty which is not easy to maintain and grow. This is why nail extensions are done so that women do not need to grow their nails longer naturally which can be very frustrating as they need to be kept with extra care and are very delicate that gets damaged easily, thus nail extension is used in such situations. 

Also, many women have the habit of chewing their nails and biting them which gives the nails a very bad impression, thus to hide that bad impression, a nail extension is the best fit for it which makes it look like naturally grown nail.

Types of nail extensions

There are different types of nail extensions and they have different use as well. Nowadays, I also recommend using nail hardeners to protect nails before using nail extensions. There is another separate guide on if you are interested to study how you can get ombre nails at home. And here are the lists of all the nail extensions you can try:

#1 Acrylic Nail Extension

The acrylic nail extensions are the kind of nail extensions made with acrylic composites materials. They are the most common type of nail extension that most people know about.

How to use acrylic nail extensions?

When it comes to applying the acrylic nail extensions, it is very easy to apply. All you have to do is to place an acrylic nail onto the original nail and this artificial extended nail looks similar in shapes to an original nail and glue is covered onto the natural nail’s tip which hardens from time to time and they will look exactly like an original nail as a whole. 

Advantages of acrylic nail extensions:

    • Acrylic nail extensions are perfect to hide the bitten nails and cracked nails that used to give a bad impression on the fingertips. 
    • Acrylic nail extensions have longer durability to last.
    • Acrylic nail extensions are tougher and rough which does not break or damages easily. 
    • Acrylic nail extensions enhance the strength of the nail which prevents the nails from weakening. 

Disadvantages of Acrylic nail extensions:

    • The biggest drawback is that Acrylic nail extensions can easily damage the original nails which are left covered and gets no fresh air and result in cracks and weakness of the nail.
    • Acrylic nail extensions may increase the length of the nail but when it comes to touch it, it can easily be detected that it is fake and is not an original nail. 
    • Acrylic nail extensions can increase the cost as they need to be refilled every month. 

What is the price of the acrylic nail extension? 

The average price of the acrylic false nail extension starts from $16 to $20.

#2 Gel Nail Extension

Gel nail extensions are the types of nail extensions that are composed of a composite gel material and they are also known as gel overlays. Compared to Acrylic nail extension the Gel nail extensions consist of gel which is covered on your original nail which gives a shiny look. They are later set up by the exposure of the UV- light to firm it. 

How to use a gel nail extension?

When it comes to using gel nail extensions, they are very simple to use. All you have to do is to cover your original nail with a gel that is transparent and it does not have any smell as well. Due to its transparency and lightweight, it will not even feel as if you are having it and it will give you the most comfortable feeling and they look more natural than acrylic nail extensions. 

Advantages of Gel nail extensions:

    • Gel nail extensions are very light weight and are most comfortable in using it. 
    • Gel nail extensions do not contain any smell. 
    • Gel nail extensions give a shiny look to the nails which makes them look attractive and beautiful. 
    • Gel nail extensions have no side-effects. 

Disadvantages of Gel nail extensions:

    • Gel nail extensions are more expensive than acrylic nail extensions. 
    • Gel nail extensions require the special UV-light which cannot be set without it and requires to buy the whole kid which increases the price. 
    • Gel nail extensions are not long-lasting as they can last up for 2 weeks which makes it less durable to use. 
    • Gel nail extensions are not easy to remove the gel nail extension.

What is the price of the Gel nail extension?

An average price of gel nail extension starts from $15 but due to their kit which needs to be bought separately, it goes to $35.

#3 Fiberglass nail extension

Fiberglass Nail Extensions are also considered to be named as silk extensions or silk nail wraps. The Fiberglass Nail Extensions are the types of nail extensions that are not much well-popular as compared to gel and acrylic nail extensions. 

How to use fiberglass nail extension?

When it comes to using fiberglass nail extensions they are very easy to use. All you have to do is glue the tip at your original nail and once it gets dry, spray over it which sets it and enhances its toughness, and hardens it up making it look like a nail as a whole. 

Advantages of Fiberglass Nail Extensions:

    • Fiberglass Nail Extensions are more frequently used for people who suffer from allergy which are caused by acrylic and gel nail extensions. 
    • Fiberglass Nail Extensions gives a glimpse of a more natural look. 
    • Fiberglass Nail Extensions are effective to use.
    • Fiberglass Nail Extensions are easy to remove. 
    • Fiberglass Nail Extensions have no smell. 
    • Fiberglass Nail Extensions are free from side-effects. 

Disadvantages of Fiberglass Nail Extensions:

    • Fiberglass Nail Extensions require treatments every 2 weeks which keeps on increasing the cost.
    • Fiberglass Nail Extensions can be cracked and damaged easily. 
    • Fiberglass Nail Extensions are considered the most expensive type of nail extension due to their higher price.
    • Fiberglass Nail Extensions are not recommended for people with damaged nails or fluid nail shape.

What is the price of the fiberglass nail extension?

An average price of the fiberglass nail extension is $50 including with its kit which needs to be bought separately.

Are the Nail Extensions permanent?

The most common thought we all have in our mind is that; are nail extensions permanent?

The only answer to this question is that NO. The Nail Extensions are not permanent but they are the cosmetic stuff to give an attractive look to your nails for a definite period of time.

As a nail extension and nail overlays can be used for a period of time, it cannot be used permanently as it is not natural and the biggest drawback why nail extensions cannot be made permanent is because just like we require fresh oxygen to breathe, our nails also require air to be passed which keeps their growth spontaneous and if the nail extensions are left for permanently then they will not get enough air due to which the nails will start to become weak and they will become weak and infection can be caused. So it not advised to use nail extensions for a longer period. 

Comparison between Acrylic and Gel nail extension 

  1. Hardening process 

Acrylic nail extensions are hardened with the help of contacting air to dry it, while the gel nail extension is hardened by contacting the UV-light. 

  1. The durability of the nails

Acrylic nail extensions are harder while gel nail extensions are softer.

  1. Capability of damage

Acrylic nail extensions are less likely to be cracked unless struck with a heavy force while the gel nail extension is prone to be damaged easily. 

  1. Ease of removal

Acrylic nail extensions are easier to apply and remove off while the gel nail extension requires special equipment to remove it. 

  1. Maintaining the nails

Acrylic nails do not require much maintenance while gel nail extensions require every 2 weeks maintenance.  

  1. Expenditure of the nail extension 

Acrylic nails are less expensive as compared to more expensive gel nails. 

  1. Long-lasting 

Acrylic nails are more long-lasting around 3 weeks while gel nail extensions last around 2 weeks. 

  1. Appearance and feel

Acrylic nails look a bit replica of the original nail while gel nail extensions look more realistic. 

Tips for Removing Acrylic and Gel nail extensions

    • Never try to remove the nail extensions by yourself as you can damage the nail and it should be removed by professionals who are at the parlor as they have trained themselves and know the proper way for removing nail extensions. 
    • You need to buy a proper kit for nail extensions which has the proper equipment for removing the nail extension.
    • If you are removing the nail extensions by yourself, do not apply force as it can damage the nails and you have to peel it off very gently.

What are Artificial Nail Extensions?

The most common way for doing nail extension is by using a fake plastic shaped nail to be glued and tick on the original nail. It is also the cheapest method for nail extension. 

Advantages of an artificial nail Extension:

    • Artificial nail Extensions are the cheapest method for nail extension.
    • Artificial nail Extensions are easiest to apply without requiring any need for maintenance.
    • Artificial nail Extensions do not have any damage to the original nail.

Disadvantages of artificial nail Extension:

    • Artificial nail Extensions are only used for a short period as they are not hardened nor they strengthen which does not makes it stick for a longer period. 
    • The quality of Artificial nail Extension is not good and looks very fake. 
    • Artificial nail Extensions do not have any attractive looks. 
    • Artificial nail Extensions are very obvious to know it’s plastic when it comes to touch it and can be easily detected.

Nail Extension and manicure kit 

A manicure kit consists of nail accessories that are essential for cleaning up the nails and taking care of hygiene. 

Items for nail extension kit include the following:

    • A nail polish
    • Cotton buds to clean the nail dirt
    • Nail cutters to cut the nails
    • Oil to soften the nails
    • Cuticle to clean the dirt inside the nail
    • Cream for moisturizing the hands
    • Nail filer for fixing the shape of the nails

How to remove nail extensions at home?

    1. You need to fill an empty bowl with a nail polish remover and dip your hand in it.
    2. Once you have dipped your hands in it, let it be soaking it well for at least 30 minutes until all the layers that are active on the nail are completely gone. 
    3. Once the layers have been removed, start to peel off the nail extension gently and slowly which leaves your original nail in the end.
    4. Once the original nail has been left, clean rinse it with Luke warm water, and apply lotion and that’s it you are done.

Should you get a Nail Extension for yourself now?

After reviewing the whole summary about nail extensions I would like to suggest that nails extensions are good for making your fingertips looking attractive and beautiful for sure but it should not be used for the longer time period as they will start to damage your nail and can result in infection in your original nails, thus longer use is not advised.

Disclaimer: Content Research, Product Opinion & Publication Process

The articles, cosmetic tutorials, and beauty tips on SheBegan magazine are contributed by experienced fashion professionals, beauty & cosmetics experts. The team of our beauty and cosmetics professionals tests the products and then share the outcomes with proper citations and then after passing all the research & editorial checks; the content is sent live making sure there exists No Conflict of Interest. You can read about our authors, volunteers, team members and editorial board with our content review, product testing, tutorial guidance process here.

Suhira Munshi

Suhira heads the editorial department of SheBegan Magazine. She joined SheBegan Magazine as an author in 2017, and her writings also appeared on cosmopolitan, lifefalcon and other mags. Suhira loves to write on wellness-related topics, skin/hair/beauty tips, relationship advice topics, and bridal grooming niche. Later, in 2019, she became the head of our editorial board and also holds the position of Growth analyst. Having had sufficient experience with fitness and nutritional balance. Suhira has worked as a fitness trainer at local Gyms, we utilize her experience in our fitness and nutritional recommendations.

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