Last updated on October 2, 2022
TheHomeGear is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.Learn more

When the front of an acrylic nail may look great, what lurks on the underside may make you squeamish. Here’s what to know about keeping acrylic nails clean

Acrylic nails come in several shapes and sizes, and can be filed or trimmed to a length you prefer. But just like natural nails, acrylic nails can get dirty underneath

Read on to learn what to know about keeping acrylic nails clean.

Wear Gloves

The best way to keep acrylic nails clean is to protect them from exposure to dirt and debris, so they don’t get dirty in the first place.

Pop on those yellow rubber gloves whenever you’ll be washing dishes, dusting, or dumping the garbage. Gloves protect your nails from dirt and also help keep them dry, reducing the risk of bacteria or fungus growing underneath your nails.

Use Anti-Bacterial Soap

Even if you’re diligent about wearing gloves, your nails will still get dirty eventually. Plus, you’ll need to wash your hands frequently in the ordinary course of any day.

Unfortunately, moisture creates a welcoming environment for bacteria and fungus. When you wash your hands, use anti-bacterial soap, and make sure you reach the areas under your nails. Then, dry your nails thoroughly, to help prevent fungus from forming under the nails.

Use a Nail Brush

Gently clean the underside of your acrylic nails with a nail brush. A soft toothbrush also works, but is harder to use. A nail brush has a curved handle that makes it easy to grasp.

Rub gently under the nail to get dirt and grime off. Don’t rub too hard, or you could damage the adhesive that holds your nail extension on your natural nail.

Scrape Away Debris

Use a cuticle pusher or nail file to gently scrape away any remaining dirt or debris from under you nail. Be very careful not to shove the tool between your natural nail and the skin at the tip of your finger. Wipe the dirt off on a disposable paper towel between cleaning each nail.

Clean the Underside of the Nail With Rubbing Alcohol

Apply some rubbing alcohol to a cotton ball or cotton swab, and gently clean the underside of the nail to remove any remaining stains or grime. The alcohol will kill germs lurking on the backside of your nail. You can also clean the front of the nail with an alcohol wipe. Reapply topcoat if you need to freshen the shine.

Now that you’ve learned what to know about keeping acrylic nails clean, there are a few other things to attend to.

First, make sure you carry a nail brush with you so you can clean your nails when you’re out and about.

Also, keep an eye on how fast your natural nail is growing underneath your acrylics. You’ll usually need a trip to the nail salon every two weeks to remove the old extensions, clean and treat the natural nail beneath, and apply a new set of acrylics.

Ask your professional nail technician for advice about when you should schedule your next appointment, and find out about trying some new nail art tricks like adding faux gems to enhance your clean acrylics and give them some extra glitter!

{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}