Can You Paint Over Acrylic Nails?

by  Mila M.Cosmetologist

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Many of us love expressing ourselves with fancy acrylic nails. However, you may find yourself wanting a new color before they are due for the next refill. In this blog post, we will debunk the myth and answer your all-important question – can you paint over acrylic nails? Join us as we dive into this often debated topic in nail care; be prepared to unlock some exciting DIY hacks!

  • Yes, you can paint over acrylic nails with regular nail polish or gel polish.
  • It’s important to use acrylic-friendly products and follow proper application techniques.
  • Glue-on and press-on nails can also be painted with regular nail polish for a new look.

Understanding Acrylic Nails

Acrylic nails are a popular choice for those wanting long, durable manicures that can be customized with different colors and designs.

What are acrylic nails?

Acrylic nails are a type of artificial nail extension made from liquid and powder mixtures. They get their strength and durability once the mixture hardens upon exposure to air. Nail technicians meticulously mold them to mimic the shape of real nails, which can then be painted with any polish color or designed according to personal preferences.

Considered as one of the most popular choices for nail enhancements, they add length and provide a canvas for intricate nail art designs. Given proper care, these synthetic wonders last about two weeks before needing a fill-in or replacement.

How long do they last?

Acrylic nails can last for a reasonable amount of time when properly maintained and cared for. On average, they can last anywhere from two to three weeks before needing to be filled in or replaced.

However, the longevity of acrylic nails may vary depending on factors such as the quality of the application, how well they are maintained, and daily activities that may subject them to wear and tear.

It is important to follow proper nail care techniques and avoid exposing acrylic nails to harsh chemicals or excessive moisture in order to maximize their lifespan.

Application tips and tricks

Achieving a flawless application of acrylic nails requires some tips and tricks. Firstly, ensure that your natural nails are clean and dry before applying the acrylics. This will help the adhesive bond better to your nails.

Secondly, trim or file your natural nails to your desired length and shape before applying the acrylics for a more polished look. Next, lightly buff the surface of your natural nails to create texture and help the acrylic adhere better.

It’s also important to apply thin coats of acrylic, building up the layers gradually for a more natural-looking result. Lastly, don’t forget to seal in your hard work with a high-quality top coat specifically designed for use on acrylic nails.

Proper upkeep techniques

To keep your acrylic nails looking their best, it’s important to practice proper upkeep techniques. Start by regularly applying cuticle oil to moisturize and nourish your nail beds.

This will help prevent dryness and promote healthy growth. Trim and shape your nails as needed using a gentle file, being careful not to file too aggressively or damage the acrylics.

Additionally, avoid using your nails as tools to prevent chipping or lifting of the acrylics. Finally, protect your nails from harsh chemicals or excessive moisture by wearing gloves when doing household chores or washing dishes.

Giving acrylics TLC

To keep your acrylic nails looking their best, it’s essential to give them some tender loving care. First and foremost, make sure you’re using acetone-free nail polish remover when removing old polish.

This will help prevent any damage to the acrylic material. Additionally, regularly moisturize your cuticles with cuticle oil to keep them healthy and hydrated. Lastly, be gentle when doing everyday tasks like opening containers or typing on a keyboard to avoid putting unnecessary strain on your nails.

By following these simple steps, you can ensure that your acrylic nails stay strong and beautiful for longer periods of time.

Can you repaint acrylic nails?

Yes, you can definitely repaint acrylic nails! Whether you want to change the color or add some creative nail art, it is possible with a few simple steps. You can use regular nail polish and an acetone-free nail polish remover to remove the old color.

Remember to choose acrylic-friendly products that won’t damage your nails. Once the old paint is removed, apply a base coat followed by your desired nail paint. Allow it to dry completely, and finish off with a topcoat for longer-lasting results.

Just make sure to be gentle when handling your newly painted acrylic nails to prevent any chips or smudges.

How to Repaint Acrylic Nails

To repaint your acrylic nails, gather the necessary supplies and follow our step-by-step guide for a flawless finish.

Necessary supplies

To repaint your acrylic nails, you will need a few necessary supplies. You’ll need regular nail polish in the color of your choice to achieve the desired look. Make sure to have an acetone-free nail polish remover on hand for any mistakes or changes you want to make.

To protect and nourish your cuticles, keep some cuticle oil nearby as well. It’s important to use acrylic-friendly products when painting over acrylic nails to ensure their longevity and prevent any damage.

With these supplies at your disposal, you’ll be ready to give your acrylic nails a fresh new look!

Step-by-step guide

To repaint your acrylic nails, you’ll need a few supplies: an acetone-free nail polish remover, regular nail polish in your desired color, a clear top coat, and cuticle oil. Start by removing any existing polish with the acetone-free remover.

Once your nails are clean and dry, apply a thin layer of your chosen nail polish color. Allow it to dry completely before applying a second coat if needed. Finish off with a clear top coat for added shine and protection.

Finally, moisturize your cuticles with some nourishing cuticle oil to keep them healthy and hydrated.

Remember that when repainting acrylic nails, it’s important to choose products that are compatible with acrylics. Regular polishes can be safely used on acrylic nails without causing damage.

Common Questions About Painting Over Acrylic Nails

Can you use regular nail polish on acrylic nails? Can gel polish be applied to acrylics? What about glue-on or press-on nails? Discover the answers to these common questions and more in our blog!

Can regular nail polish be used on acrylics?

Yes, regular nail polish can be used on acrylic nails without causing any damage. Although nail polishes may contain harsh chemicals, they are generally safe to use on acrylics. To change the color of your acrylic nail polish, simply apply a coat of regular polish over the existing color and let it dry.

If you want to remove the polish later, make sure to use an acetone-free nail polish remover that is safe for acrylic nails. Remember to always choose products that are specifically formulated for use with acrylics to ensure the best results and maintain the longevity of your manicure.

Can gel polish be used on acrylics?

Yes, you can use gel polish on acrylic nails. Gel polish provides a long-lasting and durable finish that can enhance the look of your acrylics. However, it’s important to note that removing gel polish from acrylic nails may require a different process than regular polish.

So be sure to follow the proper removal steps to prevent any damage to your acrylics.

Can glue-on nails be painted?

Yes, glue-on nails can be painted to change their color or create different designs. When painting glue-on nails, it’s important to use nail polish that is compatible with artificial nails and won’t cause damage.

Regular nail polish can be used on glue-on nails without any issues. However, it’s best to apply a base coat before painting and finish off with a topcoat for added durability. Remember to let each layer dry completely before applying the next one.

With some creativity and acrylic-friendly products, you can easily personalize your glue-on nails with beautiful colors and designs that suit your style.

Can press-on nails be painted?

Yes, press-on nails can be painted! If you want to change the color or add some nail art to your press-on nails, you have the freedom to do so. Simply gather your favorite nail polish colors and get creative.

Just like painting regular nails, make sure to apply a base coat before adding your desired color. Once dry, finish off with a top coat for long-lasting results. Remember, while press-on nails are designed for temporary wear, painting them can give you even more options to express yourself through your manicure.

Will Painting Over Acrylic Nails Help Conceal a Broken Nail?

Yes, an acrylic nail application for broken nails can help conceal a broken nail. Painting over acrylic nails can effectively camouflage any imperfections, including a broken nail. The acrylic provides a sturdy base for the polish and helps to create a smoother, more polished appearance.


You can definitely paint over acrylic nails to change up the color or add some nail art. Just make sure to use acrylic-friendly products and be mindful of proper application techniques.

With a little practice, you’ll be able to create beautiful designs on your acrylic nails without any damage or hassle. So go ahead and get creative with your manicures!


1. Can you paint over acrylic nails?

Yes, you can definitely use regular polish to change the color of your acrylic nail paint.

2. What types of products work best for painting acrylic nails?

Products labeled as “Acrylic-friendly” are best for painting on fake or glue-on nails such as French tip acrylics.

3. How does painting affect my nail maintenance routine?

Painting over your nail extensions may require more frequent application of Acetone-free nail polish remover, but it will not affect your usual nail maintenance schedules.

4. Does changing my polish harm my gel nails at a Nail salon?

No, using appropriate and gentle products ensures safety even when frequently changing designs on your gel nails.

5. Are there any limitations to what kind of designs I can create by painting over my acrylic nails?

Absolutely not! When you decide to retouch or update a design through re-painting it doesn’t limit creativity; in fact, it gives endless opportunities to try new styles and trends.

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Mila, the veteran beauty cosmetics professional and author of this article, while cutting and styling the hair of her client

Hi! I’m Mila M. I share my 44 year-experience as a Cosmetologist & Beauty Professional in this blog. This content is for educational purposes only and does not constitute professional advice. Consult your trusted Beauty Professional for your personal beauty needs.

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