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Why Do My Acrylic Nails Keep Popping Off?

Whenever you get a new set of acrylic nails, it boosts your self-confidence to another level! They not just add to the beauty of your natural nails but also stay for a comparatively long duration than other manicures.

But what if they just fall down while you are having your meal? Or what if your acrylic nails keep popping off while you are giving an important presentation?


So let us find out what actually causes acrylic nails coming off after 2 days or a week and how we can prevent them.

Reasons Why Do My Acrylic Nails Keep Popping Off

The main reasons behind falling off of acrylic nails may include poor nail prep, the health of your natural nail, their application process, or the acrylics themselves. 

1. The nail technician didn’t properly prep your nails.

Improper nail preparation often leads to the popping of acrylics. Hence, properly preparing your nails before applying acrylic nails is the most important step. 

Try and understand it the other way. 

If you want to bake something, the batter must be made with correct and quality ingredients. 

Similarly, if the base is not done correctly by your nail tech, then your acrylic nails will definitely pop off.

A strong and sturdy foundation is required to keep nail enhancements longer. For this purpose, every unnecessary thing is to be removed from your nails.

Any oils, dust, anything…

Your nails should be completely clean to adhere to the acrylic nails, to be applied in a better way, and for a longer time. 

2. The acrylic powder and liquid ratio were off.

Too much acrylic liquid will make the acrylic bead runny, while too little won’t allow it to spread thoroughly over the nail. 

Hence, they are to be applied in the correct ratio. The aim is to create acrylic nails that look natural. If there is any problem in this ratio, then your acrylic nails may not even stay for 24 hours. 

Achieving the stage where you know the exact ratio to be used requires a lot of time and practice. 

Air bubbles may also get trapped during acrylic application due to the wrong composition in the acrylic mix. 

So ensure that you get your nails done by an expert nail technician and in a well-known nail salon only. 

3. You used expired nail products. 

We check the expiry date on food products we wish to buy. But what about the acrylic product?

Did you ever check their expiry date? 

As expired food products are not good for our health, likewise expired products, too, are harmful to us. Acrylic powder and acrylic liquid have a shelf-life of up to one year or 18 months. 

Therefore, they need to be changed every now or then. Expired products are not that capable of holding acrylic nails for a longer time. 

Also, using such products can cause fungal or bacterial infections on your nail bed. 

4. The acrylic was applied too thick or thin.

Incorrect acrylic mix ratio often leads to this problem. Either acrylic nails become too thick or too thin after drying.

Too thick acrylic nails form a heavy layer that makes the nail enhancement pop off from your natural nails. 

Whereas too thin acrylics cause acrylic nails to break easily. Hence, both of these situations are not good for your nail health. 

Nail technicians must use the correct mix, neither too thick nor too thin.  

5. The acrylic wasn’t cured properly. 

Do you prefer a half-cooked meal? No, right. 

Then how could you go out of the nail salon without getting your acrylic nails cured completely?

That is why properly curing nails is also essential during the acrylic nail application process. 

If your acrylic nails are not completely dried, they will definitely pop off. This can be due to weak UV lamp bulbs used during curing. 

Nail salons must change the bulbs of the UV lamp regularly or according to the number of clients they generally have. 

The reason is that these bulbs lose their efficiency after being used for longer durations. 

The effect of ultraviolet rays reduces over time; hence, it can not be used to dry acrylic nails completely. It is highly advisable to change these bulbs every four to six months. 

6. You picked at your nails. 

Trying to open your soda can with acrylic nails? Or using bleach for washing your whites without wearing gloves?

Then, we are sorry to tell you that it is not your nail tech’s fault. 

This is so obvious that if you are wearing acrylic nails and you are trying to do any such activity, this will not only result in nail lifting but can also harm your nail plate if the force is high. 

In such cases, the natural nail also ends up lifting from the actual nail surface, causing severe bleeding and pain. 

Our nail surface becomes extra sensitive after applying acrylic nails, so you have to take some extra care of them. 

7. You used acetone-free nail polish remover

On the one hand, 100% pure acetone nail polish remover removes acrylic nails completely.

Whereas on the other acrylic nails pop even if you use acetone-free nail polish remover by mistake. 

Acetone-free nail polish removers are not so rich in harsh chemicals but can still make acrylic nails pop off the nail bed. 

Avoid contact with any such substance that can cause acrylic nails to pop. 

How to Stop Acrylic Nails From Popping Off

Now, as you have got the answer for ‘why do my acrylic nails keep popping off, you may want to know about the solution to this problem.

Here goes the list of some precautions that you can follow to avoid this problem:-

1. Don’t use acetone to remove your acrylic nails.

Acetone contains chemicals that may harm your nail bed which, in a longer duration, will lead to unhealthy nails. 

Instead, you may use warm water, soap, and an old toothbrush to remove them. 

  • Take a bowl large enough so your fingernails can submerge easily. 
  • Fill it with warm water, add some soap and dip your nails for about twenty minutes.
  • Then gently try to remove your acrylic nails, and repeat the process if needed. 
  • Scrub your nails with the toothbrush on and around your natural nails to remove any nail glue left. 

You may also use a nail brush for the same.

2. Be careful when applying polish or nail treatments. 

Whether you are going for gel polish, acrylic nail manicure, regular polish, or any other manicure style, make sure the products are applied correctly, with accurate quantity and quality. 

Acrylic nails pop when they are applied in the wrong way. 

Any mishandling while the application process can be one of the reasons acrylic nails keep falling off the nail surface. 

3. Avoid using harsh chemicals on your nails.

Nail treatments require the use of numerous harsh chemicals that may lead to unhealthy nails. 

Every nail product is made up of chemicals, starting from nail primer to the top coat.

But there are alternatives available to these products which are comparatively less harmful to your natural nails. 

If asked, nail technicians can use them for you. Harsh chemicals cause severe chemical reactions, due to which acrylic nails keep popping. 

4. Keep your nails short and trimmed. 

Short and trimmed nails prevent acrylic nail lifting. The reason is that they can make acrylic nails stay for a longer duration. Learn How to Trim Acrylic Nails.

Longer nails are not much favorable, so acrylic sticks on them. 

Hence, even nail techs decrease the nail size and file them using a nail file to make them suitable for acrylic nail application. 

Also read: How To File Down Acrylic 

5. Don’t pick at your acrylic nails. 

If you have your acrylics on, then do not do any such activity that can lead to damaged nails. 

Synthetic nails are more sensitive and hence cannot bear so much pressure either over or under. 

Nail biting is reduced when acrylic nails are on, but you have to take care not to pick them up yourself. 

6. Be gentle when cleaning your nails. 

When you are washing your hands with acrylic nails, you have to treat them like babies. 

They may break in half, lift up from the cuticle side, or even their edges can get damaged if not properly cared for. Learn How To Make Acrylic Nails Last Longer?

If you want to clean your acrylics, gently wash your hands with antibacterial soap to remove any dirt or germs around your manicure. Learn How to Clean Underneath Acrylic Nails.

This will neither harm your cuticle line nor your nail tips. 

7. Store your acrylic nails properly. 

Acrylics are to be kept in a safe working environment because there is a high risk of their breaking or popping off. 

Keeping them away from risky places such as sharp scissors, materials with acetone or chemicals, harsh soaps, and so on can increase their lives. 

8. Don’t expose your nails to water for so long. 

Exposing your nails to water for so long can gradually wash off the nail primer that was applied to adhere to acrylics properly. 

For example, pool water contains a high amount of chlorine. 

If you wish to go swimming, remember that this water can damage not only your acrylic nails but your natural nails as well. 

9. Wear gloves when doing chores or using harsh chemicals. 

If you are going to wash clothes/dishes, then your acrylic nails are going to get exposed to soap and water for a longer duration. 

This continuous exposure can remove the base chemicals, or you may even get one of your free edges of the nail stuck in between a fork while washing it. 

To remove these possibilities, you can use hand gloves while doing such chores to avoid direct contact between your nails and the chemicals present in soaps. 

This will prevent the acrylic nails from popping. 

10. Have your acrylic nails removed by a professional if they start to pop off. 

If your acrylics are lifting, you may buy nail glue and use it to prevent any further lifting. But if they are lifting badly from the cuticle region, you must visit your nail technician.

If delayed, they may become the breeding ground for numerous infections. 

Professional nail technicians know well about the products to be used for the removal process without causing much harm to your natural nail. 


There can be some other factors that affect acrylic nail lifting. Your natural nail condition can be one of them. 

Acidic nails and high-temperature nails are the two most common conditions that need to be checked before applying acrylics. Protecting acrylic nails is all in your hands. You have to find ways to protect and prevent their lifting. 

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