Solar Nails: Essential Information and How-to Guide for Beginners

In understanding solar nails, this article clarifies what they are, how they are applied, their benefits, and how they differ from other types of artificial nails.

Key takeaways:

  • Solar nails are a high-quality acrylic manufactured by Creative Nail Design.
  • Solar nails are applied directly to the natural nail bed.
  • Gel nails differ from solar and acrylic nails in their application and appearance.
  • Solar nails require precision and care for application and removal.
  • Pros of solar nails include durability and extended refill periods.

What Are Solar Nails?

solar nails essential information and how to guide for beginners

Solar nails are a type of artificial nail, often mistaken as a brand or technique exclusive to a particular nail salon. In reality, they are a high-quality acrylic manufactured by Creative Nail Design. Crafted from a mixture of powder and liquid monomer, these nails are named for their durability and the lustrous shine that mimics a solar effect.

Unlike regular acrylics, solar nails are applied directly to the natural nail bed, harden when exposed to air, and do not require the use of plastic tips to bond with the natural nail. This built-in coloration and resilient composition offer a maintained, fresh French manicure appearance with a pink base and white tips, eliminating the need for frequent touch-ups.

How Do Solar Nails Work?

Solar nails are a type of acrylic manufactured by Creative Nail Design, often mistaken for a different or more advanced product. They adhere to the natural nail bed through a multi-step process: a bonding agent is applied first, followed by a mixture of a polymer powder and a monomer liquid, which hardens when exposed to air. This hardened layer mimics the appearance of a natural nail, only stronger and more durable. The term “solar” ironically doesn’t refer to any solar energy or light-based curing process; instead, it’s simply a brand name. These nails can be refilled every three weeks, eliminating the need for complete replacements and making maintenance more straightforward.

Difference Between Solar, Gel and Acrylic Nails

Solar nails, often confused with acrylic due to their similar chemical base, are a type of acrylic but are considered a higher quality, brand-name product. Unlike traditional acrylics, they are applied directly to the natural nail and don’t usually require extensions. Solar nails are known for their durable, glossy finish, which can be refilled every three weeks, as opposed to acrylics that may need a complete replacement.

Gel nails differ substantially from both solar and acrylic nails. Gel nail applications involve a pre-mixed polymer and monomer gel formula that is brushed onto the nails and then cured under UV light. This curing process is what sets gel nails apart, creating a hard, long-lasting finish. They are more flexible than acrylic nails and have a translucent, glossy appearance which makes them look more natural.

Acrylic nails are a combination of a liquid monomer and a powder polymer that form a paste which is bonded to the natural nail. It’s then given the desired shape where it hardens in place. Acrylics are strong and robust, making them a popular choice for extending nail length. However, they can be more damaging to the natural nail and typically have a more artificial appearance than gel nails.

How to Apply and Remove Solar Nails Safely

Applying solar nails requires precision and care, usually done by a professional technician. Begin with clean, buffed nails. A primer is applied before attaching the solar nail tips with a special adhesive. A blend of acrylic powder and liquid is then sculpted onto the nails and left to harden, providing the signature durable finish.

Removal should also be approached with caution to avoid damaging the natural nails. Soak nails in acetone for 10-15 minutes to break down the acrylic. Gently scrape off the softened material with a cuticle pusher. If necessary, re-soak until the solar nails can be removed without much force. Finish by moisturizing the nail bed and cuticles.

Pros and Cons of Using Solar Nails

Solar nails offer several advantages that make them a popular choice among those seeking a durable and glossy manicure. They have a reputation for maintaining their shine and resist yellowing when exposed to UV rays, unlike some types of artificial nails.

The refill period for solar nails can be extended up to three weeks, which is longer than the typical two-week refill period for acrylics, making them a time-saving option.

However, drawbacks exist. Solar nails, while strong, can still break when subjected to enough force, potentially causing damage to the natural nail underneath. The initial application process may be more costly than other nail enhancers due to the materials and expertise required. Additionally, improper removal at home can lead to nail bed damage, so professional assistance is advised.

Choosing to use solar nails is mainly a matter of personal preference balanced against considerations of cost, maintenance, and nail health.


What is a solar nail?

A solar nail is a type of acrylic nail that is formed by using a liquid monomer and powder polymer, offering resistance to chipping and cracking, making it suitable for individuals with an active lifestyle.

Is solar nails better than acrylic?

Solar nails are more durable than acrylic nails.

How long does solar nails last?

Solar nails can last up to two months with proper care.

Are solar nails good for you?

Solar nails offer a safer and more durable alternative to regular acrylic extensions and are beneficial because they maintain their luster after being embedded in your natural nail through a simple two-step process.

What is the maintenance process for solar nails like?

The maintenance process for solar nails involves regular filling every two to three weeks, gentle filing to avoid nail damage, and professional removal to prevent nail bed harm.

Can solar nails be easily removed at home?

Yes, solar nails can be removed at home using acetone and a gentle file.

What are the potential side effects of using solar nails?

Potential side effects of using solar nails can include skin irritation, fungal infections, weak or brittle natural nails, and potential allergic reactions.

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