Skip to Content

Why Do My Acrylic Nails Hurt? [ Here Are Few Reasons To Consider ]

With every one out of five women wanting to get their nails done in a salon, it would be safe to say the nail industry is thriving.

Whether you cannot grow your natural nails or someone who wants to try out acrylic nails, this article is for you.

Beauty almost always comes with a cost. I am not just talking about the expensive price tag, but also the hurt that one can experience after applying these beautiful nails.

Suppose you have got your nails done and are left wondering, “why do my acrylic nails hurt?” worry not! You are not alone.

Why do my acrylic nails hurt?

If you are someone who gets acrylic nails done often or has done it at least once before, you will know the tingling, painful sensation that follows after the application.

But if you are new and inexperienced, let me take you through what happens after you get out of the salon and head home. The pain, however, is different for different individuals.

While the hurt may seem like a con, let me tell you, it is bearable and often goes away in a few hours. All you feel is a little tightness on your nails.

So why do acrylic nails hurt?

Acrylic nails need to stick and hold onto your natural nails, and for that, it requires a seal on them. This sealing process ensures that the acrylic stays in place for long and does not break.

The acrylic takes time to settle down, and it is during this time that you feel the soreness. No sooner than this bond forms, the uncomfortable feeling fades.

Another reason that causes sore nails is the prepping method. For a smooth application of acrylic nails, one needs to have a clear and evenly filed nail bed. You must have seen nail technicians trimming and customizing the nails to the desired shape.

Not just that, the cuticles are specifically cut and pushed back with the help of a cuticle trimmer and pusher. It often leads to sore nails. However, one cannot skip this step to avoid the pain.

You may also experience pain if your nail technician is not careful enough of the pressure he puts. The application of acrylic nails requires the technician to put pressure on the nail.

After a tiring day of work, the technician may not realize that he is hurting you. If the process is causing you pain, you can always ask them to reduce the pressure.

If your technician has used a drill on your nails, there is a possibility that your nails will hurt. Remember, drills are made for fake nails and not your natural nails. Always stay clear of them.

Sometimes the adhesive used to stick your acrylic nails onto your natural nails can also be the reason for the pain.

It can be way past the expiry date or be a different glue altogether. If the quality of the adhesive is poor, or it is beyond expiration, your nails will hurt. You may also experience redness and infections.

If your acrylic nails have a thickness beyond the required intensity, there are chances that your nail will hurt.

The pressure of the thick acrylic and the stone elements on it can be a little too much on your delicate nails. Bleeding may start as a result of damage to the nail bed.

Another factor causing pain can be the length of your acrylics. It is always advisable to get your nails done according to your convenience, not what the trend shows.

If your nails are longer than one you can maintain, it will hurt and feel uncomfortable. Longer nails are prone to get hit, causing pain and breakage.

If your nails hurt for more than five days, it may be time for you to consult a dermatologist.

Acrylic nails can sometimes give you infections. Either the tools used were not properly sterilized, or moisture led to the formation of fungi and bacteria. While nail infections are curable, do lookout for symptoms.

Lastly, do you know that your natural nails can be the reason for the pain? Yes, you saw it right! If you apply acrylics on thin, malnourished nails, it can hurt just as much. It happens because the nerves under your nails now lay bare.

How can I make my acrylic nails more comfortable?

There are quite a few ways that can help in making acrylic nails more comfortable. Let us discuss some of them now.

  • If you opt for a less pointed nail shape, it will likely be more comfortable.
  • It is not always possible with a busy schedule, but patch testing the nail glue can help to avoid allergic reactions.
  • Choose your nail technician wisely. Skilled technicians will know how to do your nails better.
  • Avoid buying nails online and doing it on your own. Youtube videos can be tempting, but it can be dangerous to try about just anything because it is cheaper.
  • An easy method is to dip your fingers inside ice-cold water. It will help reduce the discomfort and soothe your nails from the burning sensation.
  • If the pain is too much, you can have a painkiller medicine. But do not misuse it; painkillers are only advisable for extreme discomfort.

How do you get rid of painful acrylics?

The first step is always taking a painkiller or getting a first-aid. But if the pain still does not go, you should take off the acrylics. The best option is to go to your nail technician and ask them to remove it for you. However, if you have time constraints or cannot readily reach them, you can take them off at home.

There are two methods of removing acrylic nails – one includes acetone, and the other is without acetone.

If you use acetone to remove your acrylics, be careful not to soak your nails. You start the process by buffing your fake nails slowly till they no longer have the shine.

After this, soak your nails in pure acetone. It would help if you waited for the adhesive to weaken so that the acrylic comes off easily without any added force. Once the strength of the glue reduces, you can push the fake nail off your nail bed.

Another method of removal does not include using acetone. Ethyl acetate and Isopropyl alcohol are excellent alternatives for removing acrylics. These chemicals are less harmful, and you can soak your nails in them. Repeat the same buffing process post soaking, and you are good to go.

If you want to stay away from chemicals, soak your nails in lukewarm water or cuticle oil. It will take more time, and the process can be a little painful, but it works too!


As much as we like getting our nails done, we cannot avoid the pain that sometimes comes with it. It usually does not last long and is pretty much bearable. All you need to do is to follow the

steps as mentioned above, and you will be good to go.