What You Need For Acrylic Nails? Essential and Non-Essential Supplies

Are you looking to achieve fabulous acrylic nails but not sure where to start? 

I understand that the world of acrylic nails can be both exciting and overwhelming, and I’m here to provide you with clear and concise guidance on how to get started. 

Whether you’re a complete beginner or someone seeking to improve your technique, this blog post will equip you with the essential knowledge and Information on the requirements to do stunning fake nails. 

So let’s have a brief look at what you need for acrylic nails. 

Here’s a Professional Acrylic Nail Supplies List:

  1. Acrylic powder
  2. Acrylic liquid 
  3. Nail tips or forms
  4. Nail glue
  5. Nail primer
  6. Nail file
  7. Buffer block
  8. Cuticle pusher
  9. Acrylic brush
  10. Dappen dish
  11. Nail cleanser or alcohol
  12. Lint-free wipes
  13. Nail dehydrator
  14. UV/LED lamp 
  15. Nail oil or cuticle oil 
  16. Nail polish 

Before breaking down the list above into optional and mandatory products, let me disclose that our team of professional nail technicians, in collaboration with professionals from CND and NAIL HARMONY, have compiled this list for the ease of beginners to help them get familiar with the products needed for fake nails. 

What Do You Need To Do Acrylic Nails?

Well, if you’re a beginner, you’ll definitely need the expertise to put on DIY nails, but along with skills, getting yourself familiar with all the materials and their correct application is also necessary. 

For the sake of ease, I’ve broken down the supplies into the following two categories. 

Essential Supplies Needed For Acrylic Nails

In this section, I’ll highlight all the essential materials required for wearing your acrylic nails. Without these tools and compounds, you can’t expect to apply the nails. 

  • Acrylic Powder

It is one of the main compounds needed for acrylic nails. It is chemically a polymer that, when blended with acrylic liquid, creates a paste. 

After the paste is exposed to air, it hardens. It comes in various colors and is used to build and shape the artificial nail.

  • Acrylic Liquid

Acrylic liquid which is also known as monomer, is another main ingredient needed for acrylic nails. It is in the form of a liquid that is mixed with the powder in order to create that special paste or acrylic material. 

It, in fact, works as an activator of the powder and forms a workable consistency that can be sculpted onto the nails. A substitute for acrylic liquid can also be used for this purpose. 

  • Nail Primer

Nail primer, in fact, is a cleaning agent used for putting on acrylic nails. It is used on the nail bed of natural nails before applying the acrylic mixture to clean the base from all kinds of contaminants.

 It helps improve adhesion and prevents nail lifting or peeling of the acrylic nails.

  • Nail File 

The nail file is one of the tools needed for acrylic nails. It is employed to shape and smooth the edges of the nails.

It comes in different grits, with higher numbers indicating a finer texture for a smoother finish.

  • Buffer Block

A buffer block is another essential tool required for doing professional acrylic nails. It has a rectangular shape with different surfaces of varying coarseness.

It is used to buff and shine the surface of the nails in order to produce a smooth and glossy finish.

  • Cuticle Pusher

A cuticle pusher is also an essential tool if you want flawless and strong fake nail extensions. It can be used to push back the cuticles, which is a layer of dead skin cells around the nails. 

The tool can help you get rid of those tissues and create a clean and defined area for applying the acrylic mixture.

  • Nail Brush

If you want good results, you can’t use a paintbrush for acrylic nails. You have to pick up an acrylic nail brush for this purpose. 

It is a specific type of brush that has synthetic bristles that are prepared for applying and manipulating the acrylic mixture. 

It should be cleaned thoroughly after each use to prevent product buildup. The right nail brush size is mandatory for natural-looking nails. 

  • Nail Cleanser/Alcohol

Well, hygiene should be the first priority when doing synthetic nails. So it is suggested to keep a nail cleanser or rubbing alcohol around yourself to clean and sanitize the natural nails before applying the acrylic mixture.

It not only provides a sterile environment but also removes any oils or residues that could interfere with adhesion.

  • Dappen Dish

A dappen dish is a small glass or ceramic container used to hold the acrylic liquid during the application process. It provides a convenient and accessible container for dipping the acrylic brush.

  • Lint-free Wipes

Lint-free wipes are used to clean the nails, remove excess product, and wipe off any residue during the application process. They are specially made to be non-linting to ensure a clean and smooth finish.

Non Essential Supplies Needed For Acrylic Nails

Following are the materials that are considered optional. You can go with doing your nails without using them. However, I would suggest you have them in your nail kit for a better manicure. 

  • Nail Tips/Forms

Nail tips are plastic extensions that are in fact, pre-formed fake nails and resemble exactly natural nails in shape. They are attached to the natural nails using nail glue so that the acrylic material can hold on.  

They provide a base for applying the acrylic mixture and can be trimmed and shaped to desired lengths. 

Forms, on the other hand, are flexible guides that are placed under the natural nails to produce an extension without using nail tips.

  • Nail Glue

Nail glue is an adhesive required while doing acrylic nails. It is usually used to attach nail tips to the natural nails. It provides a strong bond and helps keep the artificial nail tips in place.

  • Nail Dehydrator 

A nail dehydrator is an optional step used to peel off excess moisture and oils from the natural nails. It is generally used along a primer. It benefits in enhancing adhesion and preventing lifting.

  • UV/LED lamp  

If you plan to use a gel top coat for a glossy finish, you will need a UV or LED lamp to cure or dry the gel. This step is not necessary if you prefer a regular nail polish top coat.

  • Cuticle Oil

Nail oil or cuticle oil will be needed for the aftercare of your nails. They are applied after the acrylic nails are finished to moisturize and nourish the nails and cuticles. They provide the nails with a healthy environment and prevent them from becoming dry or brittle.

  • Nail Polish

Nail polish is an optional addition for adding color and decoration to acrylic nails. It can be applied after the acrylic has fully dried and hardened. You can go for any color available or combine various colors for a unique look. 


What do you need before applying acrylic nails?

Before applying acrylic nails, you need clean, oil-free natural nails, an acrylic nail kit (liquid monomer and acrylic powder), a nail file, a buffer, a nail dehydrator, a primer, a brush, and nail tips or forms.

What do you need for a beginner nail tech?

For a beginner nail tech, you’ll need a basic nail kit including nail files, buffers, cuticle pushers, nail clippers, a UV or LED lamp, gel polish, nail art brushes, base and top coat, and a practice hand or model.

How do you get acrylic nails for the first time?

To get acrylic nails for the first time, visit a professional nail salon. A nail technician will prep your natural nails, apply nail tips or forms, shape the acrylic using liquid monomer and acrylic powder, and finish with filing, buffing, and polishing.

Is an acrylic nail kit enough for fake nails?

An acrylic nail kit usually includes the basic materials needed for fake nails, which are not enough for better results. So you have to add some additional tools for durability and desired shapes and designs. 


So now you’re well up on what you need for acrylic nails. The required tools and supplies can easily be availed online through Amazon, Walmart, and Esty. You can also buy them from a nearby beauty store.  

Marissa Arnold

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