Difference Between Gel and Dip Powder

Written by: Dana Leotta

If you are confused about the difference between Dip Powder and Gel Polish, you’re not alone. Until I worked at Revel Nail, I didnt know what the difference was either. Ive always heard great things about both, but I didn’t know which option I should pick until I tried both out. It can be overwhelming when its time to get your nails done with all the different options now offered. If youre like me and take forever to decide on what color you want then deciding between Gel and Dip Powder could be the next big decision to make. Well, lets clear this nail controversy up.

Dip Powder

As I said before, I had no idea what Dip Powder was. I didn't understand how powder could possibly form as a harden texture on your nails. Let's dive into some of the basic facts you should know about Dip Powder. Its applied with liquids and powder. Unlike gel, you wont need a UV/LED light. This method is healthier than using acrylics and Gel polish. If youre looking for a quick method, then this is for you. Did you know Dip Powder can be applied in half the time it takes to complete an acrylic manicure? It feels great knowing you can achieve a healthy manicure in such a short period of time. Unlike other polish methods, Dip Powder is light and doesnt feel uncomfortable. Its known for being strong and can last up to 8 weeks. Im not being biased because I work for a Dip Powder company but WOW that is amazing. One of the biggest disappointments is getting a manicure that lasts about a week long. When its time to remove Dip Powder you will need a file, cotton balls, tin foil, and acetone. If you want more details on this process you can watch our tutorial on How to Remove Dip Powder. If you want to see how to apply Dip Powder step by step, you can watch our YouTube video: Revel Nail Home User Tutorial.


When using Gel, the application process is the same as regular nail polish which is applied with a brush. You will need a Gel base coat, Gel color polish and Gel top coat. You will need a UV light to cure which results in a longer application process. There is no dry time needed because the polish will cure under the UV light. Gel Polish is also strong which allows it to not chip or crack and lasts up to 2 weeks. You will remove Gel-polish the same way you remove Dip Powder. If youre someone who uses their hands a lot this might be the best option for you.

Either product you decide to use will result with a beautiful manicure. When it comes to deciding what way you should go. Its up to you and your preference. Ask yourself some of these questions. Do you want durable nails? Do you want your nails to stay healthy? Do you have the time to keep up with maintenance? Which one is more comfortable?

So, whats your next manicure going to be? Looking to get started with Dip Powder? Be sure to check out our Dip Powder Starter Kits!