Do Acrylic Nails Have Metal In Them?

Regarding beauty enhancement products for fingernails, acrylic nails are one of the most popular products people use. It is popular because of its durability and beauty. In addition, acrylic nails come in different shapes, types, and forms.

Hence, many people are bothered about the materials they use to make acrylic nails. Some believe that acrylic nails are made of metals because of their texture and durability.

So, Do Acrylic Nails Have Metal In Them? The answer is a straight no. “Acrylic nail” is used for various products, including nail tips, press-on nails, and sculpted nails.

The early form of acrylic nails were nail-shaped pieces of plastic glued on the natural nails, but modern technology has added a new version of acrylic nails that looks more natural and bonds easily on the natural nail. This article will explain how acrylic nails are made.

What are the raw materials for making acrylic nails?

Like many other domestic use products that you don’t know the materials they are made of, you then begin to guess the likely materials for such product.

As mentioned earlier, metals are not part of the raw materials for making acrylic nails. This article will explain the raw materials used in making acrylic nails.

1. Polymer powder

The polymer powder usually used in making acrylic nails is called “poly ethyl methylmethacrylate” (PMMA). This powder produces a very hard, inflexible plastic. However, the powder can be mixed with softer polymers to improve flexibility.

When mixed powder and monomer liquid are combined, the reaction is known as crosslinking, forming a rigid netlike structure.

After this cross-linking process, the polymer strands will be dried, and the result will be a hard resin that could be made to look similar to a typical fingernail.

2. Monomer liquid

This is a liquid chemical that is microscopic. The monomers do combine in a head-to-tail manner to form long fibers. These monomers will connect, and we will arrive at polymers, an essential material in making acrylic nails.

3. Resin modifiers

To form this resin, other ingredients will be added to polymer powder and monomer liquid to control the properties of the resin.

Other crosslinking agents will hook the polymer chains together to make the powder more rigid.

The most common of these agents is ethylene glycol dimethacrylate. The polymer powder has an initiator that will start the reaction and lead the monomers together.

The common initiator is the ingredient used in making acne creams, benzoyl peroxide (BP). For the polymer to resist breaking easily, some liquids are used to help lubricate the polymer chains.

Other ingredients

Various ingredients are also added to complete the resin process. Some of the ingredients are dyes and pigments that may be used to alter the appearance of the resin.

To look natural, titanium dioxide is used to make house paint for acrylic nails. This is also used to give the acrylic nails a special color effect. Other colorants are added to give the acrylic nails the desired color.

Moreover, flow agents are added to help control how polish is spread on the surface, and color stabilizers are used to prevent the acrylic nails from turning yellow.

The manufacturing process

Acrylic nails are neither manufactured nor assembled by a machine; a professional nail technician sculpts them. The process includes the following:

1. Cleaning the nail

Natural nails are first prepared before acrylic nails can be sculptured. Nail cleanser solvents such are isopropyl alcohol are used to clean natural nails.

This will dissolve any oil and grease on the nail’s surface and help remove bacteria that can cause infections from the natural nails. Nevertheless, the nail technician must be careful, so that solvent will not drop on the skin.

2. Priming the nail

After cleaning the nail, a primer is applied to the natural nail bed to ensure the acrylic nails will form properly.

There are two types of primers: etching and non-etching primers. There is an argument for the method that could be used with these primers.

Some believe the primer should be allowed to dry before applying acrylic, while some believe the acrylic should be applied while the primer is still wet.

3. Mixing the resin

The resin is made once the acrylic powder is mixed with the acrylic liquid. However, the nail technician must work quickly with the resin once the powder and the liquid are mixed. If this is not done quickly, the resin will harden and not be useable again to form the nail shape.

4. Sculpturing the nail

Before applying resin, a nail-shaped form is placed over each fingertip to ensure that it takes the desired size and shape to look like the natural nail. The resin is sculptured to look as natural as possible before the resin hardens.

5. Waste

The same way every other manufacturing process produces waste, either liquid, gas, or solid, is the same way the production of acrylic nails produces waste.

Acrylic liquid or powder leftover must be discarded in the right place. All leftovers must not be returned because they might have been contaminated during production.

Design of acrylic nails

The design of acrylic nails is at the discretion and market target of the manufacturer. Nevertheless, every company producing acrylic nails uses the same idea and raw materials.

Each company will uniquely design its formula with distinct advantages and disadvantages that gives its company a comparative advantage over its business rivals. However, the real design is done by a professional manicurist who will design each acrylic nail to the desire and satisfaction of their clients.

Quality product

The FDA was established in the USA for the safety of consumers and to ensure that companies that produce acrylic nails and many other consumable goods comply with a standard that would not pose any risk. The food and drug administration and FDA deal with the safety of cosmetic chemicals.

The FDA in the early 1970s warned against the use of methyl methacrylate in the production of nail care products because of the allergic reaction of consumers to monomer.

Hence, the quality of the product should be ensured by the nail technician when sculpturing the acrylic nails. Moreover, care should also be taken because the adhesive chemicals used in sculpturing could cause the nail to crack or change color.

Also, the space between acrylic and natural nails could be a breeding ground for fungi and bacteria.

Therefore, acrylic nails should be appropriately fixed to prevent this. You might need the service of a professional manicurist to do this the way it should.


The process of manufacturing acrylic nails has been explained in this article. The process does not in any way include the use of any metal. Irrespective of how strong and unbreakable the acrylic nails could be, it is not made of metal.