Getting your nail done has been one of the top fashion priorities of most girls as it helps them to enhance their beauty and make them look well-groomed. Unlike the last time when only regular nail polish was used for manicures, which was basically made up of dyes and organic paints, nowadays, there are a number of manicure options available.

These manicures might include acrylics, nail extensions, dip powder, and gel polish set. Each of these nail manicures has its own kind of different advantages as well as drawbacks. From this, the two most popular types of manicures are gel polish and dip powder nails and can be done in several different ways.

The Key Differences Between Gel Manicures and Dip Powder Nails

So, if you are a fashion enthusiast, you might already know these types of nail manicures, but if you are new to the world of fashion, then here are some key differences between gel nail polish and dip powder for you.

Read more below to find out which one is your personal favorite.

The key differences between gel nail polish and dip powder

Application Procedure

The main difference between a dip powder nail manicure and a gel nail manicure can be easily identified by knowing the way they are applied to your nails.

When talking about the best gel polish, it is generally applied just like you apply a regular nail polish on your nails with the only difference being that it is dried and cured properly with the help of using an LED or UV light lamp after each coat or layer is applied. Basically, gel nail polishes contain several types of photo-initiated polymers which are activated when they are exposed to a particular type of LED or UV light.

Most cosmetic experts and nail bar owners can describe to you how easy this process is, and you can certainly do it at home as well. In this process, UV lights are most often used rather than the LED lights as it helps to activate the polymers quicker and in turn, lets your nail dry quicker.

While on the other hand, when you talk about dip manicures, you can certainly use the powdered color acrylic, which is generally mixed with a type of glue resin that can be easily cured in the normal or fresh air.  In the process of dip manicures, first of all, a base primer coat is applied on and when every nail is dipped into a small container of colored acrylic powder while your nails are still wet. Just like a gel manicure, these dip powder nails can also be get done all by yourself that too without getting into much hassle.

All you have to do is to apply your gel nails in the form of layers until your acquired coverage level is reached, and then later, extra activator polish and powder is brushed off with a soft nail brush.

Lasting Strength

On an average a gel manicure can last upto two or three weeks if it is applied correctly and in the proper form. For those women who mostly have a much oilier base than the normal nails, gel nail polish may not last for more than two weeks for them as it will chip off more easily.

However, when moving to the dip manicure, on an average, the dip powder nails can certainly last longer than the gel nail polish. This is because the formula of the dip powder manicure is much stronger and harder than the gel nails and thus helps your nails polish to resist any kind of chipping.

The reason behind this is that the dip powder nails are done with the help of glue resins that hardens even more when they are exposed to the normal air, which helps the manicure to last up to four to five weeks easily.


To simply put this all conversation, in a nutshell, both the gel polish and dip powder manicures have perks and cons of their own. However, it is estimated that the removal process of both these nail manicures is quite hard and time consuming, which also depends on several different factors like experience level, salon, etc. In addition to that, gel nail polishes are comparatively less expensive to dip powder but only with a difference of $10 to $20.

One thing to remember is that one of the biggest drawbacks of dip powder nail manicures is that they can easily get contaminated if they are not handled carefully. In contrast to that, gel nail also requires a certain protocol to be followed step by step in the right order and in an accurate manner.

You can get both these nail manicures quite easily by going to a nail salon or even at the comfort of your home if you have the required techniques and things.