Here’s the skinny on dip powder: We commend the fact that it doesn’t require UV light, but that doesn’t make it A-okay for nail health. It can have a pretty similar effect on your nails as acrylics, as each includes the same base ingredient and roughens up the nails quite a bit. And from a safety standpoint, we can’t ignore the contamination concerns with repeat dips. That said, if you do opt for a dip manicure, make sure you see a nail tech who brushes on the powder instead of dipping each finger in the jar.
If you’ve had your fair share of dip powder manis, don’t lose all hope for your natural nails: Simply keep those tips hydrated and moisturized (a daily cuticle oil is best, says Lim), and keep up with healthy nail maintenance until they’ve completely grown out. It may take some time, but hey—a strong, bare nail is always on-trend.