Can You Swim with Acrylic Nails?

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When the weather gets hot, it’s time to go to the beach or the pool for a swim! Both are great places to see and be seen. So you prep yourself up and even get your nails done. However, with your experience with regular nail polishes that chip when you spend time in the water, you could be worried about your acrylic nails. 

Many ask “can you swim with acrylic nails?” In short, you certainly can swim with acrylic nails! Water won’t ruin them. They will only be removed if you soak them in acetone.

However, you should be mindful of how long you stay in the water, and about the current condition of your acrylic nails. Prolonged water exposure can still have some not-so-good effects on your acrylic nails.

We’ll discuss that further below.


Can You Swim With Acrylic Nails? And For How Long?

Acrylic nails are known to be tough and durable. That means that you can have lasting beautiful nails for weeks. However, you might be afraid of swimming because you don’t want to damage your beautiful manicure (no UV light needed. We love it!).

Well, fear not! Swimming doesn’t ruin your acrylic nails (or gel nails for that matter). You can swim with them. 

Fear not, swimming doesn’t ruin your acrylic nails. You can swim with them. 

Does Chlorine Affect Acrylic Nails?

Even if you are swimming in a pool, chlorine won’t affect acrylic nails. They will stay as beautiful and vibrant as ever.

Does Salt Water Ruin Acrylic Nails?

No, salt won’t damage acrylics either!

Do Acrylic Nails Fall Off in Water?

No, they don’t, assuming you’re not soaking in the water for a long time. If you’re taking regular breaks, your acrylics should be totally fine in the water.

So What is the Concern When Swimming with Acrylics?

It’s not chlorine and it’s not the saltiness of the water at the beach that is the problem. It’s too much time in the water itself.  

A quick dip at the pool or a swim for a few laps won’t hurt your acrylic nails. They are made to be waterproof. That is also why it is perfectly fine to wash your hands or take a shower with them on.

You don’t have to wear gloves when you shower with acrylic nails. 

However, if you soak for hours in the water regularly with your acrylic nails, wash dishes, etc., there is a chance the acrylic nail can begin to lift. The likelihood of your acrylic nail lifting will depend on how well the fake nail tips were applied to your nails.

If you soak for hours in the water regularly with your acrylic nails, wash dishes, etc., there is a chance the acrylic nail can begin to lift.

If it is already starting to lift, soaking it while swimming will just worsen the lifting. Eventually, they could pop off.

The problem here lies in the water getting underneath the acrylic fake nail. Although acrylic nails are waterproof, our natural nails still have a tendency to absorb water. When the real nail absorbs water, it also expands.

With such changes, it is possible that the bond between the acrylic and your natural nails will loosen. 

This doesn’t mean that your entire acrylic nail will be detached from your natural nail immediately. However, it will start to be lifted around the edges. And that isn’t a good thing. 

The Problem With Acrylic Nails Lifting

So what’s the big deal with acrylic nails lifting anyway? If they are only lifted on the edges, you’re still good to go right? They still look good and most of it is still attached. 

Even if the acrylic nails still look good and still feels attached when some parts the lifted, you shouldn’t ignore them. The problem with lifted acrylic nails is that there is a gap formed between them and your natural nails.

That could cause a health problem. 

You need to have that gap fixed as quickly as possible. If not, there is a chance for bacteria to get in and be trapped. With this, a nail infection can occur. Even if it starts with the nails, the infection can spread and be harmful to your whole body. Acrylic nail fungal infection is pretty common, and pretty much only occurs when the nails are lifting and exposed to water.

Acrylic nail fungal infection is pretty common, and pretty much only occurs when the nails are lifting and exposed to water.

To fix lifted acrylic nails, you may need to visit your nail technician. However, that isn’t true for all scenarios. Sometimes, you can simply use a little bit of nail glue to reattach the acrylic nail.

Choose actual nail glue , and avoid using household glues like Krazy glue. This way, you won’t run into major problems down the road.

Before you do that, make sure to sanitize the area with alcohol. If you did expose the nail to water, you probably should visit your salon to make sure everything is ok. 

What To Do Before And After Swimming With Acrylic Nails 

As we’ve said, you can still swim even with acrylic nails. You just have to take precautions and not overdo it.

Furthermore, here are a few tips on what you should do before and after swimming when you have acrylic nails. 

Properly Apply Your Acrylic Nails

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If you are applying No products found., make sure that you follow the correct steps for your DIY Acrylic Nails, so that they bond correctly.

This helps prevent the acrylic from lifting due to water exposure.

If you’re going to a nail technician for your acrylics, make sure to go to a reputable one that uses high-quality materials. They should also be experienced techs, capable of ensuring that the acrylics don’t detach due to improper application. 

Check Your Acrylic Nails

Before you go for a dip, it is best to inspect your nails. If you see any lifting, you may want to have them repaired first.

As we’ve said, some are simple enough and you can just use nail glue in some scenarios. This is also true after you go swimming.

Check to see if your acrylic nails are lifted and repair or have them repaired as needed. 

Use Cuticle Oil

Some suggest using cuticle oil or moisturizer on the acrylics before you take a dip. This does help repel water but is only a short-term solution.

Eventually, the oil or moisturizer will eventually be washed out as you stay in the water for a long time. 

Quickly Dry Them Off

After swimming or even after wetting them, it is best to dry your nails as quickly as possible. If you observe lifting, make sure that the gap is also dry, and try to use alcohol to sanitize it before repairing.

Drying them quickly will prevent the bond from further loosening. 

Final Thoughts

You can certainly swim even if you have acrylic nails. However, you just need to know that prolonged exposure to water increases the chances of lifting. Although swimming doesn’t damage your acrylic nails, lots of water can cause your nails to lift a bit.

Lifting can be dangerous for your health if you do not remedy it immediately. Check the nails before and after swimming and avoid lifting, and address them if you have a problem.

Written by Kayla Young

Kayla is the founder of LuxeLuminous. She has worked professionally in the tanning industry for years. She has been interested in esthetics since childhood, and has tried every hair, skin, and makeup product ever produced (more or less).