Why Do My Acrylic Nails Hurt? Know the Reasons & Remedies

With the advancement of science and technology, the fashion world has also taken a major step and is leaving no stone unturned in providing the beauty you desire. When it comes to nails, the world is so much ahead than you may even think. Fan of big and healthy nails? But you can’t grow them; the solution to your question lies in the word “acrylic nails.”

Wondering what it is and how it may help you? Well, acrylic nails are a mixture of powder and liquid monomers combined to form a dough. This is applied to your nails, shaped, and then air-dried to harden them. Acrylics are wildly popular and are loved by most women out there. They are a great option to add strength and length to your natural nails. They are difficult to maintain and require your attention from time to time. You need to visit the salon every once in a while to maintain acrylics properly.

How Are Acrylic Nails Applied?

  • While getting acrylic nails, it is always advised to visit a professional nail technician so that you don’t hurt yourself during the process.
  • First, the nails are trimmed properly and then buffed to make a surface for the acrylics to adhere to.
  • Using a cuticle pusher, the cuticles are then pushed. Nail primer removes moisture and excess oil from the nails and makes them ready for acrylics.
  • Now it’s time to fill the acrylic brush with the acrylic and apply it from the nail’s base. Only apply a little acrylic because then you will need filling. Always apply it a little before the cuticles so that the acrylic does not stick to your skin.
  • Always clean the brush after every stroke to get a neat and finished look. Now let the acrylic dry for some time.
  • Now it is time to tip the acrylic nails. Buff them as you desire, paint them, and now it’s your job to maintain them carefully.
the image shows, gorgeous pink and purple acrylic nails
acrylic nails

Also Read: Quick and Easy Ways to Remove Nail Glue

Why Do Acrylic Nails Hurt?

Let’s move on to the most common issue while getting a nail acrylic- the pain is provided after its application. While most women are exploring acrylic nails, they need help understanding the pain on the first day. If you are new to the acrylic world, you have to understand that any activity done to your natural being is going to hurt you a little bit. Acrylics are installed in your natural nails by a process that can give you some painful experiences the first time.

But there is no need to worry much because this pain is not unbearable and often vanishes on the second day. In some cases, it may not even be there. And if the pain is not gone by the second or third day, maybe your nail is damaged or infected. In such a case, you need to change your salon and visit a professional. Applying acrylic nails is a difficult task, and it is a must to get them only by a professional to avoid any future consequences.

Here are explained some of the reasons why an acrylic nail can hurt for the first day after application:

the image shows before and after the application of acrylic nails
why do acrylic nails hurt

Filed Down Natural Nails

  • This is a must to do process and is done by a nail file. It is required to prepare your natural nails before the application of the acrylics for them to adhere perfectly.
  • If you are not used to this process, this can be quite uneasy for you the first time. The manicurist will file your nails at a depth you may feel uncomfortable with. And it is necessary to get a rough surface on the nails.
  • Filing the nail is the prime reason for the pain at first. This pain usually goes away after one or two days.
  • If the soreness or pain persists, it can be a sign of internal damage to your natural nails, mainly resulting from an untrained manicurist.

Also Read: BASE COAT vs TOP COAT: Know the Differences & Benefits for Your Nails

Too Much Pressure While Applying the Acrylic

  • When you are new in this field, your natural nails are accustomed to their natural being. When pressure is applied in such a case, you feel sensitive around the area, which often results in pain and soreness.
  • The manicurist, while performing, may apply too much pressure on your nails, this is not done intentionally, but it is just the process. In case you are feeling too much pressure, ask your manicurist to go slow.
  • Usually, the pain in such cases will only last for a day, and when your nails are used to the acrylics, it won’t even matter.

Thick Acrylic Nail

  • When the load is added to anything, it irritates and hurts for the time being. Such is the case with acrylic nails.
  • This process may hurt if you are not used to getting fake nails.
  • Most of the time, the manicurist applies more portion of acrylic, which is usually not necessary. When this extra load is applied to your nails, the nails start experiencing uneasiness.
  • But not to worry because once you are used to the acrylics, your real nails will become accustomed to the pressure or heaviness.

Naturally Thin Nails and the Nail Glue

  • Natural thin nails can also lead to some discomfort. When the technique of acrylic nails is applied to your thin nails, the nails may experience uneasiness.
  • This may also lead to temporary soreness and pain, usually disappearing after a day or two.
  • If you are allergic to nail glue, it is highly recommended to remain away from it. Some types of nail glue are just not suitable for everyone.
  • In cases of such sort, you may experience pain, itching, and discomfort in your nails. It is advised to check the type of nail glue you are using and whether it suits you.

Pushing Back of the Cuticles

  • To ensure proper adhesion of the acrylics, the manicurist pushes back the cuticles and removes the flesh from that region. This process can be painful and discomforting.
  • Most professionals apply cuticle oil to lighten the area and push back the cuticles. This is not a long-term pain and vanishes once you are used to the process.

Also Read: Structured Gel Manicure: All You Need to Know

The Tightening Sensation While the Acrylic Dries

  • Once the acrylic is installed, it takes time to dry properly. While drying, your natural nail may feel a tightening sensation which can be very discomforting and unnatural.
  • In most cases, it naturally goes away in a day. Once you are used to this tightening sensation, it will become natural and will not hurt much.

Tips to Relieve Pain From Acrylic Nails

the image shows, small nails
cutting the nails

Hydrating Your Hands and Nails

Apply some aloe vera gel or cuticle oil to soften the nails and the surrounding area. Doing so will give you relief from the pain and increase the healing duration.

Wonders of Cold Water

  • If you are afraid that cold water may loosen your acrylics, you are wrong, it just helps to provide easiness to the nails.
  • Dip your hand for about 10 minutes to get instant relief.

Sanitization is Must

  • Before the items required for your acrylic nail application are used, ask the manicurist to sanitize them properly.
  • This will remove the chances of infection and soreness.


Getting acrylic nails should be a fun, happy, and positive experience, do not let the pain and the thought of pain come in the way of your beautiful perfect nails. As is already mentioned, if you are a newbie in this area, it will take time to get used to the slight pains you may encounter.

You can always ask your technician to be gentle and slow for the first time, at least. Also, remember to visit a professional every time you get the acrylics. Be patient; you will love the look on your hands once the process is done. Read the article to lessen the pain and grab all the information about acrylics.

Reference Link

Acrylic Nails Hurt-FAQ’s

Are Acrylic Nails Safe?

* Yes, acrylic nails are safe. You can get them with full zest and fun. You need to ensure that you are not allergic to nail glue and that you can handle the bit of pain you get while doing the acrylics. It is advised to remove the acrylic nails every once in a while to let your natural nails be deprived of the chemicals.

* Regular usage of acrylic nails can be harmful to natural nails.

How Long Do Fake Nails Usually Last?

* Depending upon your nail growth, it can last for upto 6 to 8 weeks.
* You need to get them filled out every once every 2 to 3 weeks.

How to Remove Acrylic Nails at Home?

* You can use a pure acetone-filled container to dip your hand in it for some time.
* Cut down the nails as quickly as possible to make removal easier.