The Difference Between GEL, SNS & Bio Sculpture — The Parlour Room (2023)

Treating yourself to a manicure is as much about making yourself feel good as it is looking after yourself. What you choose to wear on your nails can have a lasting impact on the health of your nail bed, so it’s important to be across all options. While some of us choose to paint our nails at home, there’s nothing quite like a salon-quality finish.

Considering there are plenty of options available, here we take you through the most popular; Gel, SNS, Bio Sculpture and BIAB, all available at The Parlour Room, so you’re well informed for your next appointment.

The Difference Between GEL, SNS & Bio Sculpture — The Parlour Room (1)


Price: $90

Similar to a gel, BIAB (which stands for Builder In A Bottle) is the latest product innovation from The Gel Bottle Inc. Its unique formula mimics the strength and durability you find with SNS and acrylic but is by far much healthier for your nail plate underneath.

(Video) Why Dip Powder Nails Are Better Than Gel | Macro Beauty | Refinery29

Where SNS and acrylic can be quite restrictive and harsh on your nails, often leaving your nail plate extremely weak, dry and dehydrated, BIAB on the other hand, can last longer than a typical gel mani (anywhere up to 3-4 weeks) and combines all the benefits people know and love from these treatments, including flexibility, strength and durability, without impacting the health of the nail.

With BIAB you don’t need to book in for a soak off each time, rather much like your acrylics, you can get infills every 3-4 weeks and if you like the look of longer nails, you can book in for BIAB with extensions as well.


Price: $60

Gel nails provide a soft, neat, glossy finish, where the treatment consists of a base coat, two coats of colour and a topcoat with each layer cured and set under UV lights. People often get confused between gel and shellac however, they are the same thing, shellac isa popular brand of gel polish.

One of the many benefits of gel nails is that you don't need to account for any drying time as each layer, first, a base coat, followed by multiple layers of polish and finished with a top coat and cuticle oil, is cured as you go. So it’s perfect if you’re short on time. Around 45 minutes is all you’ll need.

The gel treatment is quite flexible however, because of this, they tend to only last around 2 weeks before you need another appointment. This is because they’re very soft and can quite easily chip or breakaway, especially when they’ve been exposed to regular household chemicals such as soaps and cleaning products.

It’s always best to book in with a professional if you want to remove them, that way the technician can ensure there is no damage to the nail bed when doing so and can treat them after.

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The Difference Between GEL, SNS & Bio Sculpture — The Parlour Room (2)


SNS stands for ‘signature nail system’. SNS is a well-known brand of a powder dipping treatment, where you first apply a base coat and then dip your nails in the desired colour powder of your choice, and set with a topcoat.

If you’re after strength and durability, SNS is a great option. Compared to gel, it doesn’t chip as easily and can typically last up to 2 - 3 weeks before it appears to lift at the edge or starts to grow out from underneath.

Application takes around 60 minutes and although it is possible to remove your nails at home, we highly recommend you book in and see a professional instead. Because they’re so strong, it can be quite painful if you rip them off and cause damage to the nail bed.

The Difference Between GEL, SNS & Bio Sculpture — The Parlour Room (3)

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Price: $75

Bio Sculpture is a specific gel-like treatment which has the added benefit of acting like a protective layer while stimulating overall nail health at the same time. Because of this, Bio Sculpture is generally considered one of the best options for your nails, where its composition contains vitamins and minerals which promote strength and length.

A much more versatile product than other manicures which are applied as a permanent polish, Bio Sculpture allows you to manipulate and ‘sculpt’ the product to the desired length and shape which holds together for up to 2 - 3 weeks.

Application takes around 45 minutes however not all salons offer this as a treatment as it does require specific training to undertake. As such you should always book into the same salon for removal to ensure it’s done correctly.

If you’re still not sure what treatment you would prefer, you can always book an appointment at The Parlour Room and ask one of our friendly technicians when you come in. The girls are always happy to help and can give you the best advice based on your individual needs.

(Video) Acrylic vs Gel Nails | Which is better?


Is Bio Sculpture better than gel? ›

Bio Sculpture is a very different product to other gels and hybrid gel polishes, the main difference being that Bio Sculpture will not cause any damage to the natural nails. Most gel systems on the market are acrylic based and cannot be removed without damaging the natural nail.

What is better for your nails gel or SNS? ›

SNS vs Gel: The Verdict

If you want a manicure that lasts two to three weeks without chipping, gel is probably best. But, if you're worried about UV exposure or want a manicure that isn't as damaging to your nail bed, go for SNS.

What are the two different types of gel systems used in salons? ›

There are two types of gels: Soft gel and hard gel. The main difference in the two products has to do with how they are removed. Soft gel nails are known as “soak-off gels” because the nail polish can be removed with acetone. Hard gel is used to add nail length over soft gel that is used soley as a polish.

What is the difference between gel nails and SNS? ›

The SNS manicure uses the glue, powder, and the accelerator process, whereas gel manicures use [gel polish] and a UV light to adhere polish to the nails." Dip powder also tends to be a bit more durable than gel polish, usually staying in good shape for somewhere between three to five weeks.

Why do my Bio Sculpture nails keep lifting? ›

Reason: This can be as a result of improper nail plate preparation, an oily nail plate (either naturally or due to product), or poor application. Solution: Ensure prep is completed correctly and thoroughly, and ensure the correct gels are selected for the clients nail needs and the gel is structured properly.

How long does Bio Sculpture Gel last? ›

A much more versatile product than other manicures which are applied as a permanent polish, Bio Sculpture allows you to manipulate and 'sculpt' the product to the desired length and shape which holds together for up to 2 - 3 weeks.

What lasts longer SNS or gel? ›

While gel might be cheaper at the outset, SNS typically lasts much longer. Where a gel manicure usually has a lifespan of about two weeks, SNS manicures can last four or more, especially if you make an extra effort to take care of your nails along the way.

Why are my nails so thin after SNS? ›

Does SNS damage nails? Like most in-salon manicures, damage to your nails most commonly occurs during the removal process. To remove SNS, your nails need to be soaked in acetone for 10 to 15 minutes, which can make them dehydrated and brittle.

What type of manicure is healthiest? ›

A basic manicure, with the right polishes, is the healthiest for your nails. When we say the 'right polishes' we mean the best nail growth polish or breathable nail polish. The harsh chemicals in many polishes often degrade our nails. Using an organic polish that contains vitamins, is the best way to avoid damage.

What are the 3 types of manicures? ›

What are the different types of manicures? The main manicure types that you will come across are basic, acrylic, gel (including Shellac), French and dip powder.

Is dip or gel better for thin nails? ›

Dip powder is harder and more durable than gel. As such, it's a great option for those with weak nails or people who do a lot of labor with their hands. No UV lamp.

Can you do SNS on short nails? ›

SNS is hailed as a healthy manicure, as the powder formula contains nail-fortifying calcium and other minerals. “It can be applied to almost any nail, no matter how short,” adds Bowhill-Hayes.

Does SNS add length? ›

Do SNS nails add length? The beauty of SNS nails is that they have a lightweight feel, they look natural, they're strong, and yes, they add length. It can also be applied to any nail, regardless of the length, and they tend to last around three weeks.

Is Bio Gel better than regular gel? ›

The gel does not contain the harsh chemicals that acrylics do, which means the nails remain healthy, strong, and damage-free. Bio gel is nourishing to the nails because it stimulates nail health and contains vitamins and minerals.

Is Bio Sculpture Gel good for your nails? ›

Bio Sculpture is a very different product to other gels and hybrid gel polishes, the main difference being that Bio Sculpture will not cause any damage to the natural nails.

Is Bio Gel better than gel? ›

I must say, the Bio Gel nails look way more natural and feel more natural than acrylics and because they tend to bend a bit more with your natural nails is that people say they are healthier. If you freak out about the uV lamp like me, I recommend applying a lot of sunscreen 30 minutes before starting your manicure.

What is the difference between Bio Sculpture and Evo gel? ›

Evo is a nail care system that has Evolved from the Bio Sculpture Gel system – Leaders In Healthy Nail Care. It is the ideal product to work within a busy salon. Evo Base is Vitamin A and E infused, and these vitamins migrate to the natural nail after curing.


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