Are you a beginner nail technician eager to hone your trade? Alternatively, are you a DIY enthusiast keen to make the best acrylic nails?
Regular practice is the only way to sharpen your skills. You can apply all the modern manicures without much trouble if you practice for a few weeks. Moreover, regular practice allows you to discover new trends and techniques that may earn you more money or help you stand apart.
For this reason, we’ve identified the eleven best acrylic practice hands to fast-track the learning process.
Best Practice Hand for Acrylic Nails
- Lion Vision Practice Hand for Acrylic Nails
- FU SHEN Mannequin Hands for Nails Practice
- Dream Reach Upgrade Nails Nail Training Hands
- DECINEE Practice Hands for Acrylic Nails
- BLULU 20 Pcs Practice Manicure Fingers with false Nails
- Hedume 60-Pack DIY Nail Art Training Fingers
11 Best Practice Hands for Acrylic Nails
The eleven best acrylic practice hands for DIYers and beginner nail technicians in 2023 are as follows;
1. Best Overall: Lion Vision Practice Hand for Acrylic Nails
- Flexible fingers
- Replaceable nail tips
- Height-adjustable fixing bracket
- The package includes 200 pcs of refill nail tips
- It’s a rigid ABS plastic mannequin
LION VISION is a household name in the acrylic manicure industry, providing various tools and materials to help techs and DIYers improve their craft. We also love the company because it regularly offers discounts and free giveaways for selected products. So, you can find quality practice nails for under $20.
Thus, we strongly recommend their movable nail mannequin hand for beginners and DIYers. Though an ABS plastic hand, it has flexible joints and detachable fake nails, held strongly to the nail bed so you can practice all acrylic procedures without fear of slipping. Moreover, the dummy is the size of a real human hand to get the most life-like experience.
The detachable, replaceable nail tips are another reason to love these practice hands. You can replace the existing tips with refill nail tips or false nail tips, allowing you to practice multiple acrylic nail processes. The best part is that the package includes about 200 refill nail pieces. You also get a nail clipper and applicator brush.
Finally, we must mention the highly flexible fixing bracket. It affixes to any table and is height adjustable. So, you can set it in different positions depending on whether you’re seated or standing. The long bendable arm further increases flexibility.
2. Best Realistic Plastic Hand for Nail Training: FU SHEN Mannequin Hands for Nails Practice
- Package includes 24 pcs of Ballerina nails
- The fingers are bendable to any position
- Available in nude or black colors
- The clamp is sold separately
This is a rubber nail training hand with a round hole at the bottom to clamp it to your working surface, such as a table or desk.
The clamp holds the prosthetic hand firmly, preventing back-and-forth movements when practicing acrylics. But it is sold separately, though you can buy the practice hand + clamp together on Amazon.
The soft rubber material is completely safe for humans. Moreover, it has no smells or fine particles that may trigger allergic reactions. Similarly, the fingernails are soft and easily bendable to any position, just like a human hand, and the simulated nail groove gives the feeling of a real manicure.
Although the manufacturer strongly recommends nail glue for attaching fake nails to the training hand, double-sided glue is also practical. Both soak off with acetone. But to prevent damage and prolong the life of the prosthetic arm, consider non-acetone polishes.
The reusable hand is available in black and nude colors to suit your needs. More importantly, it’s the size of an average woman’s arm. The package includes 24 pcs of false ballerina nails to get you started.
3. Most Flexible Trainer Hands: Dream Reach Upgrade Nails Nail Training Hands
- Adjustable to any angle and height
- Provides a detachable hand and fingers
- Includes a C-clamp for stability
- Most plastic mannequins are low-quality
This is another ABS plastic hand. But, again, it has no foul odors to worry about. Also, it’s strong and very durable. But why do we like it so much?
Because it’s highly flexible. Adjust it to any angle and height to meet your nail practice needs. Moreover, it has three joints and a flexible steel handle.
We also love that you can tightly insert the false nail tips into the fingers. The tips don’t fall off easily, letting you focus on refining your skill.
To replace the nails, press the fake finger down the hole firmly. Then pull and press the false nail simultaneously with your thumb and index finger. The reusable mannequin is easy to clean for future practices.
Although specifically targeting acrylic nails, this training hand works for many other manicure practices, including gels and wraps. You can also use it for nail art, stick-on nails, nail polish, etc. Remember to adjust the fingers to suit your needs.
The package includes a C-shape clamp with a steady pipe that bends and twists at will without damage.
4. Best Nail Practice Hand for Full Cover Nail Tips: Decinee Practice Hand for Acrylic Nails with 100 Pcs Coffin Nail Tips
- The package includes 200 nail tips
- Nail tips no longer fall off easily
- It’s very cost-effective
- Available in only one color option
This mannequin from the Decinee store is a very popular product. However, customers initially complained about nails falling off the snap-on tips too easily.
So, you’ll be glad that the company has fixed the problem. Try removing the silicone part around if the nails fall off too easily. Alternatively, use some glue.
Anyway, it’s a beautiful ABS plastic mannequin with flexible joints that move around easily. So, you can maneuver the hand and fingers for convenient practice. Our customers use it for acrylics, gels, and other manicures. But you can also use it for nail art and tips.
Each package arrives with 100 pcs refill tips. Moreover, the tips easily slide into the fingers, fitting tightly. In addition, it includes 3x nail files, 3x nail buffers, a nail clipper, and 100 pcs coffin nails. So, it’s a massive deal, given you get all these items plus the practice hand and clamp for about $20.
Our only issue with this product is that plastic rarely makes durable practice hands. But it’s undeniably strong and very durable.
5. Best Nail Practice Fingers for Nail Polish: BLULU 20 Pcs Practice Manicure Fingers with False Nails
- Easy and convenient to handle
- Available in different sizes
- Easy to stick to the working surface
- Lacks the complete hand experience
Did you know you can opt for practice fingers instead of full hands? Understandably, many trainees prefer complete hands.
However, individual fingers are perfect when trying to master polish details. You can glue the fingers to your work desk or grab one with your weaker hand while applying a manicure with the stronger one.
If you’re convinced, this set of 20 plastic fingers from BLULU is the perfect package. Each finger is approximately 5.0 x4.5 x 4.2 cm, about the same as real fingers. Thus, they’re easy to handle.
But the company has many other sizes to suit different needs. The self-adhesive fingers easily stick to various surfaces, including wood and glass. Peel the sticker on the base to reveal a sticky surface.
Working with BLULU’s fingers is easy. Put the finger on your working surface, then apply polish and allow it to dry for a few seconds. It’s similarly easy to remove the painted nails. Dip a cotton swab in acetone and gently wipe the nail surface to break the adhesive bonds.
The package contains 20 pcs of acrylic nails, enough to practice nail polish and art to share with family, friends, and clients to promote your business. The best part is that BLULU now accepts Meta Pay.
6. Best Nail Practice Plastic Finger: Hedume 60-Pack DIY Nail Art Training Fingers
- The package includes 60 practice fingers
- Self-adhesive fingers easily attach to the work surface
- No need for extra nails on the practice fingers
- No acrylic kit included
Hedume’s 60-pack DIY nail training fingers are another option if you’re excited by the simplicity of training fingers over complete hands. They are extra smooth and slightly smaller than the BLULU fingers. For instance, the standard fingers measure 1.9 x 1.8 x 1.2 inches. But they’re just as easy to use.
You can apply nail polish directly to the fake nails without attaching extra fingertips. But roughen the fingers a little using a nail file for strong adhesion. After roughening, you can practice nail polish, nail art, and more.
The self-adhesive practice fingers easily stick to working surfaces. Peel the white sticker at the bottom, press the dummy on the selected spot, and wait a few minutes for the bond to cure. To remove it, use a clear nail polish remover. It breaks the glue bonds, so you can easily pick the hand.
Unfortunately, the package doesn’t include any manicure tools. For instance, expect something other than an acrylic brush, nail file, or buffer. You must purchase these items separately.
7. Best Silicone Practice Hand for Acrylic Nails: Know-U Nail Practice Training Hand for Acrylic Nails with Stand
- It’s a full silicone practice hand
- Reusable and easy to clean
- Highly bendable, like real fingers
- It’s a tad expensive
We’ve only listed plastic and rubberized hands and fingers because they’re the most common and cost-effective. Specifically, plastic fingers and nails are cheap and easy to care for. Also, they’re strong and durable.
But you want a higher quality dummy if you’re a professional manicurist, as it gives you a better experience. That’s where silicone practice hands and nails come in handy. Silicone hands are soft and bendable, just like real hands. Some even have “bones” inside to mimic real hands. It’s an amazing experience.
This specific model from the KNOW-U store is the size of an adult female hand. The jelly-like nails are life-sized too. Moreover, it has a durable base that easily attaches to most surfaces. A simple clamp stabilizes the mannequin on your working surface.
KNOW-U practice hands are reusable and highly life-like. They’re also easy to clean and maintain. Clean it with water after use and dry it with a towel. Then store it away from dust and direct slight.
8. Best Silicone Practice Fingers for Acrylic Nails: America Nails RealisTech Ultra-Lifelike Silicone Practice Fingers
- It’s extremely life-like
- Perfect for displaying your skills
- The package includes 100 insertable nails
- The package has only one finger
This silicone practice finger from America Nails RealisTech is perfect if you prefer finger dummies. It’s just one finger, which may not be ideal for complete training as you need a full set of hand nails. But it’s so life-like you’ll likely go back for another.
The finger has a flexible aluminum alloy skeleton for life-like movements. So, you can bend it just like a real nail. Meanwhile, it’s covered by premium, cosmetic-grade silicone “skin” for an ultra-life-like feel.
We also love that it has deep cuticles on each finger that hold insertable fingernails in place without glue. At least 100 insertable nails are included in the package for your practice. Besides practicing acrylics and nail art, use the nails to display your skills on a counter or advertise them on social media.
Note that these silicone fingers are great for everyone, from learners to DIYers and beginner nail technicians to professionals. For instance, beginners can use them for practical sessions at home, while professionals can practice new acrylic techniques.
9. Best Rubber Training Hand for Acrylic Nails: PORPOR BOOYA Two-Piece Practice Hand for Acrylic Nails
- Highly life-like mannequins
- Made of strong, durable rubber
- They’re very cost-effective
- No acrylic kit included
Rubberized practice hands are highly practical and some of the most cost-effective considering both price and function. So, we have another set to consider, this time from PORPOR BOOYA.
It’s made of soft but strong, durable rubber, resembling real hands. Moreover, the hands are the size of real hands. For instance, the arm is about 11 x 3 inches, about the size of an average woman’s arm. It feels like working on real hands.
But that’s not all. For instance, the red iguana training hands are reusable. Wash soiled sections with water and soap. Then allow it to dry in a shady place away from direct sunlight. Also, we love that you can use it for various manicures, from acrylic to gel and nail art to nail polishes.
The package includes two practice hands (both right-handed) with widened bases for stability. Glue them to your working surface using super glue for the best experience. You can easily weaken the glue with acetone to remove the hands.
10. Best Practice Hand for Replacement Tips: Lion Vision Flexible Movable Plastic Hand Acrylic Nails
- Highly bendable hand and fingers
- New trapezoidal-shaped slots lock the nails securely
- The set includes 100 practice nails
- The base includes a C-clamp for stability
- It’s a tad expensive
This is the second fake acrylic practice hand from LION VISION. That should tell you something. It’s a reliable company that makes high-quality products.
Moreover, you can always look forward to discount codes calculated based on previous purchases. It’s a strategy to attract and retain customers, but it can save you plenty.
However, unlike the first product, this is a soft and gel-like silicone mannequin for a better training experience. Moreover, it’s a highly flexible hand. Therefore, it bends to any shape and direction without breaking.
Note that the company has fixed the earlier problem where some fingernails dropped out of the sockets too easily. LION VISION adopted a trapezoid-shaped slot to address the challenge, effectively locking the nails in place.
This means the nails no longer fall off even when using a 3500 rpm electric nail file at full speed. The package includes 100 practice nails to begin training right away.
You’ll discover a 3.2 mm built-in aluminum wire inside the mannequin that mimics human bones, enhancing the manicure experience. The wire also allows you to bend the nails multiple times without breaking.
11. Best Budget-Friendly Silicone Practice Hand: YAMI Store Practice Hand for Acrylic Nails
- Smooth and life-like
- Easily bendable and flexible
- Highly affordable
- It isn’t easy to clean
Finally, you’ll quickly notice that the best silicone practice hands are expensive, typically around $50, with some costing $100+. That may be fine for some, especially established salons. However, it isn’t for DIYers and learners. Consider this false hand from the YAMI store if you want something more affordable.
At under $10, it’s hard to find a cheaper silicone mannequin for manicure training. Moreover, it’s soft and extra smooth, just like a real hand. Also, it’s 11.8 x 3.7 inches and weighs 230 grams, a similar range to real hands.
The fingers are easily bendable for ease of use. You can turn them in any angle and direction. Moreover, the nail groove and surface are uniquely shaped to fit the fingernails without slipping. Consider a clamp to move the hands around more easily. Unfortunately, the valuable clamp is sold separately.
We use professional glue to stick the nails onto the practice hand and nail paste or jelly to weaken the bonds when removing the nails.
What’s the Best Way to Practice Acrylic Nails?
Using fake hands and practicing on your own nails are the two best ways to learn applying acrylics.
We agree with other experts that practicing on your hands or a friend’s is the best option. It allows you to work with real hands, as with clients, a vital confidence booster that can help you eliminate basic mistakes.
More importantly, the service industry relies greatly on feedback; unfortunately, fake hands don’t talk.
However, fake hands are advantageous in several ways. The biggest one is that acrylic nail processes are painful and damage the nails. So, repeatedly practicing on your or a friend’s hands poses severe risks, including injuries and nail infections. In contrast, fake hands neither feel pain nor get nail infections.
Also, you can replace worn or broken fake hands but cannot say the same about real hands. For instance, nail polish removers thin the nails, often causing cracks. Thus repeated use puts you in great danger. This is another reason fake hands make more sense.
Specifically, consider a nail trainer practice hand. It is a life-like hand on a flexible arm, with flesh-like fingers and removable fingertips. Moreover, you can move the fingers easily, apply and remove various manicures, and install replacement tips after using the old ones.
You’ll notice that nail trainers have a raised cuticle area. You’re supposed to cut the cuticles with a nail file as with actual nails.
Factors to Consider When Choosing the Best Hand for Acrylic Practice
Unfortunately, not all acrylic nail practice hands are the same. So, it helps to find the perfect trainer. Consider the following factors;
- Material: Silicone makes the most life-like silicone hands. So, make it your priority. But if you can’t find silicone, consider rubber. Unfortunately, plastic trainer hands are the least life-like.
- Flexibility: Its flexibility is the main reason silicone makes a wonderful fake hand material. You can easily bend and twist the fingers like real fingers. Rubber is also highly flexible. But plastic isn’t. So, ensure your plastic hand has an armature inside to enhance flexibility.
- Skin tone and color: Skin color and tone aren’t critical. However, using hands in the same color and tone as your clients make sense.
- Can you use forms, tips, and stick-on nails? Unfortunately, not all fake hands provide this possibility. For instance, the most advanced silicone hands have a cuticle-like depression where you slide forms, but many plastic hands don’t. So, check carefully.
- Does it include the acrylic application kit? An acrylic application kit comprises the monomer, polymer, application brush, etc. So, it’s a cost-saving inclusion. It costs $10 to $15 if sold separately.
- Are you a DIYer or a nail technician? A DIYer can make do with the cheapest item in the bunch because they only use the fake hand once every few weeks. Meanwhile, professional nail techs must consider quality, durable products they can use for many years.
- Cost: False acrylic hands range from as little as $14 to $100+. How much are you willing to pay? Typically, the higher the price, the higher the quality.
Can you Practice Acrylic Nails without Fake Tips?
Yes, you can practice acrylic nail application without fake nails. The following are three ways to practice acrylics without fake tips.
Practice on Yourself
As we’ve seen, practicing on yourself is one of the best alternatives to fake hands. It provides a real-life experience and allows you to monitor the manicure until it wears out. So you can easily determine its durability.
Unfortunately, repeatedly applying acrylics can cause nail damage. So, consider covering the nail plate in a protective wrap before applying acrylics. Alternatively, apply clear nail polish under the acrylics for easier removal.
Practice on Nail Tips
Nail tips, nail wheels, and display tips are other worthwhile options. They’re a downgrade from quality fake hands. But they’re great for practicing smile lines, product application, and filing.
Remove the shine from the tip before starting. However, you can skip the base coat and nail primer.
Practice on a Laminated Sheet
Finally, sometimes it helps to go back to the basics, and what better way than practicing on laminated paper sheets?
Of course, it doesn’t offer the life-like experience synonymous with real or trainer hands. However, you can practice many methods and styles on a large laminated paper.
Moreover, you need to practice making and picking beads. Sadly, real hands, fake hands, and practice tips don’t help. That’s where laminated sheets come in handy.
How to Get Nail Tips to Stick to Plastic Fingers
The best way to apply plastic tips to the fingers varies from one hand to the next. Consider the following methods to stick the tips securely;
- Snap it on and off: The simplest designs allow plastic nails to snap in and out of the cuticle area. This makes them great for nail polish and nail art installation. But they’re the wrong training hands for practicing stick-on nails.
- Stick it with an adhesive: Other training hands have a flat nail bed where you apply an adhesive to apply tips and false nails. These hands are great for most manicure procedures, including applying tips and stick-on nails. But removing the dried adhesive is challenging. Apply a silicone primer to soak off the nails without damaging the nail beds.
- Slide it into the silicone slot: Modern practice hands have a cuticle slot where the plastic fingernail goes. Thus, they’re highly realistic. But you need adhesive to keep the nails from falling out.
How to Remove Acrylic Nails from Fake Practice Hands
It’s easy to pop acrylic nails off practice hands. They typically come off with no struggle unless they’re stuck. In that case, the removal process depends on the type of practice hands.
Removing Practice Nails from Plastic Hands
Never use acetone on plastic hands. It melts the fingers along with the plastic hands. Instead, use a nail drill to file off the stuck nail. Then finish off with orange buffers.
Use clippers or brute force to snap off the tips of long nails. Then file down the nail and buff with orange buffers.
Removing Stuck Nails from Silicone Hands
A major advantage of silicone hands is that they don’t dissolve in acetone. So, you can soak off the nails just like real hands.
Follow the same steps as a real hand: drilling and filing down the surface and then soaking the nails in acetone-based nail polish remover.
Tips and Tricks when Practicing Acrylics
The best acrylic practice hands are expensive. So, you want to take good care of them. Otherwise, you’ll need to budget for a new one soon.
The following are valuable tips to keep your practice hands clean and scratch-free;
- Unpack carefully: Practice hands are delicate, save for a few plastic ones. For instance, jewelry can scratch them and cause dents. So, handle them with care. One way is wearing latex gloves to avoid staining or scratching the hand.
- Assemble it properly: First, put the right parts in the right places. For instance, don’t force replacement fingertips where they don’t belong. Also, avoid adhesive tape because it chips paint when removing it. Above all, follow the assembly instructions to the letter.
- Don’t over-tighten the vice: Trainer hands with vices are highly convenient as you can work in many natural positions. But be warned that overtightening the vase can crack a glass-top table.
- Heat and sunlight protection: Store the hands away when not using them. Otherwise, prolonged exposure to heat and direct sunlight can cause deformation and discoloration.
- Handle with care: Poseable hands bend easily for convenience. But resist the temptation to bend them into unnatural shapes or positions. You may damage the delicate metal inside. There’s no going back once that happens.
- Cleanliness and hygiene: The hands attract dust. So, dust them regularly. Additionally, wash them with warm soapy water every few weeks or so, depending on how often you use them.
- Storage tips: If storing your acrylic training hands with the nails on, use extra long ones that go deep into the cuticle cavity. Also, consider inserting the nails in reverse, with the square ends inside and the curved base out. This orientation fills the sidewalls better, reducing the risk of falling off.
Practice Hand For Acrylic Nails FAQs
Why Won’t My Nail Tips Stick to My Practice Hand?
You must use glue to secure the nails to the acrylic practice hand. Otherwise, they keep falling. It’s just real nails. To secure the nails, you need special glue, typically nail or superglue.
But before shopping, find out what the practice hand manufacturer says. For instance, super glue is a no-no for rubber mannequins.
What’s the Best Practice Hand for Gels?
You can use most acrylic practice hands and nails for gels. Again, check with the manufacturer to find out if it’s acceptable. If not, shop for a gel-specific practice hand or a reusable, multi-purpose hand. Alternatively, practice gel manicures on laminated sheets or your hands.
A fake hand is the ideal practice tool when learning acrylic manicures. Specifically, consider a plastic or silicone practice hand. Rubber is good, too but stains easily.
Fortunately, you can find highly practical practice hands from several top brands, such as the Quick Shop store, Amazon, Walmart, and Etsy.