What Size Acrylic Nail Brush Is the Best For You?

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What’s the deal with acrylic brush sizes? How do you choose the best acrylic nail brush size for your nails?

Nail brushes can be expensive. So it’s important to choose a size that works well for you.

Let’s find out what you should consider before picking a size.

Here’s what we’ll cover:

What’s the best size brush for doing acrylic nails?

Best size brush for beginners – size 8

Best size brush for intermediates – size 14.

Best acrylic nail brush size for professionals – 20.

Is brush size really that important?

Who should use a small acrylic nail brush?

Who should use a large acrylic nail brush?

Final thoughts and a few more tips.

What’s the best size brush for doing acrylic nails?

Acrylic nail brushes come in a wide range of sizes from a tiny size 6 to a massive size 22.

So which size is the best?

Well, the truth is there’s no “best size” brush for doing acrylic nails.

There are pros and cons to using both bigger and smaller-sized brushes. We’ll go into those further down.

But for now, you should know that the best size brush for you is going to depend on 4 things:

  • Your experience of using acrylic.
  • The length you want your acrylic nails to be.
  • How fast you want to work.
  • The bead method you are following.

Best size brush for beginners – size 8

size 8 https://nailhow.com/whats-the-best-acrylic-nail-brush-size/

Smaller nail brushes (in sizes 6 – 10) are easier to use.

A size 8 brush is what most new nail technicians begin their training with.

An acrylic nail brush in a size 8 is often recommended as the best size for beginners.

You’ll also find that most beginners kits come with a size 8 brush.

I’d have to agree that if you’re just getting into acrylic nails, a size 8 brush is a good starting point.

Best size brush for intermediates – size 14.

size 14 https://nailhow.com/whats-the-best-acrylic-nail-brush-size/

But what about if you have some experience?

Maybe you’ve got a little practice under your belt and you want to speed up the process a little.

In that case, you may want to try a bigger size, like a 14 or a 16 for example.

With a size 14 or 16 brush, you can do an application with 1 or 2 beads quickly and easily.

Best acrylic nail brush size for professionals – 20.

size 20 https://nailhow.com/whats-the-best-acrylic-nail-brush-size/

Professionals use bigger brushes because they allow you to work faster.

In the nail salon, time is money, so the more time you can shave off your application the more you make.

If you often do nails that are more than an inch long from the tip, then a size 20 or 22 is going to be best for that.

Is brush size really that important?

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Brush size is important because it affects how many beads you can do.

It also affects how fast you can work, and how easy it is to get a good bead consistency.

Brush size is NOT as important as technique though.

The most important technique any acrylic nail tech or DIY’er can master is…

product consistency.

Each acrylic nail powder system has its own golden liquid to powder ratio.

This may differ slightly depending on which acrylic nail brands you are using.

Most acrylic powders work best with a ratio of 2 parts liquid monomer to 1 part acrylic.

If you can consistently get the liquid to powder ratio right, then the size of the brush you’re using won’t matter as much.

Here’s a great video on brush sizes with some tips on technique.

Who should use a small acrylic nail brush?

size https://nailhow.com/whats-the-best-acrylic-nail-brush-size/

Let’s talk about the pros and cons of using a small size nail brush.

The main benefit of a small nail brush is that it’s easier to use.

This makes a small brush, like a size 8 or 10 perfect for beginners.

Small brushes can not soak up as much monomer. So you will be less likely to have beads that are too runny and difficult to control.

When you’re learning the ropes, it’s also much easier to apply the acrylic in thin layers with a smaller brush.

With a size 8 brush, the lowest bead method you will be able to follow will be a 3 bead method.

But in reality, you may find that you are doing 4 or 5 small beads per nail.

This can be time-consuming. This is why some people upgrade to a bigger size once they master the technique.

Who should use a large acrylic nail brush?

big https://nailhow.com/whats-the-best-acrylic-nail-brush-size/

Larger brushes mean fewer beads, which means quicker application.

This makes larger brushes perfect for intermediates and professionals.

You should use a large brush (like a size 14 or 16) if you are doing a 1 or 2 bead method.

Large brushes are not recommended for beginners because they soak up a lot more monomer.

Unless you have some experience, using a large brush can mean you end up with beads that are too runny.

When you use a big brush, it’s harder to get the acrylic to go on thinly.

So with a large brush, you may find you are spending a lot of time filing thick or lumpy nails down once they are set.

Large brushes stay firm at the belly. This makes it easier to pull the acrylic down to the free edge from the cuticle.

If you have some experience, a big brush can shave valuable minutes off your application time.

With a little practice, you can pick up a small bead with a large brush and vice versa.

Like I said, it’s less about the size of the brush and more about getting the liquid to powder ratio right.

Final thoughts and a few more tips.

The key takeaway from this post is that brush size is less important than technique.

Rather than focusing on finding the perfect size, try honing your bead technique to get that perfect liquid to powder ratio.

Once you have that down, you can use any size brush to create whatever size bead you want.

This post is just a guide. So you do you.

Feel free to experiment with different shapes and sizes of brushes to see what works for you.

A good tip for when you want to upgrade your brush is to do it gradually.

Don’t jump from a size 8 to a size 16 for example, but rather move up in increments.

So go from an 8 to a 10, a 10 to a 12, or a 12 to a 14 for example.

If you want to use a bigger brush then I’d suggest watching nail techs who use big brushes on youtube.

Then try to emulate what they do.

You may hear some nail techs talking about how bigger brushes can cause lifting, but this isn’t true.

Brush size has nothing to do with whether the nails lift. It’s a complete fallacy.

I think that’s it.

I hope that you found this post useful.

Wishing you cute nails always 🙂


  • Phoebe Meadows

    Phoebe Meadows is a self-proclaimed nail addict, always on the lookout for the latest trends and techniques. When she's not creating stunning nail designs, you can find her researching the latest nail care products or experimenting with new techniques.