Everyone’s Asking For Bio Sculpture Nails — A Healthy Alternative To Regular Gel

Photo: Via @paintedbyjools.
Social media is a brilliant tool for discovering intricate nail art trends or spotting the season’s hottest nail polish colours — and it’s all thanks to the many talented nail artists who continue to share their creations. From BIAB (builder in a bottle gel) and shellac to gel overlays and nail wraps, the breadth of brands and techniques that those nail artists rely on are pretty much endless. Right now, though, just one is being credited as their product of choice.
Enter: Bio Sculpture. 
Far from a new service, Bio Sculpture is actually the original gel polish brand. It was first launched in 1988 as the first soak-off gel nail treatment, but competitors were soon hot on its trail. Today there is an abundance of choice when it comes to visiting the salon for a gel manicure. But when the industry’s top nail artists like Julia Diogo (aka @paintedbyjools) are using Bio Sculpture to create their trademark manicures, it’s clear that there must be something particularly special about this product. Diogo isn’t alone, either. A quick scroll through TikTok proves that manicurists in their droves are swearing off other gel nail polish brands entirely in favour of exclusively offering Bio Sculpture nails. So what exactly is the appeal?

What are Bio Sculpture nails?

Available in a wide range of colours from nudes to bolder reds, blues, pinks and beyond, Bio Sculpture is a vegan gel nail enhancement that is painted onto the nail in layers using a small brush. Once sculpted into the desired shape, the product is then cured underneath a UV nail lamp. It can also be soaked off when you see fit. Bio Sculpture was the first of its kind, although there are many more gel systems on the market now. The thing that really sets Bio Sculpture apart from other brands, though, is that the products have been formulated to preserve the health and strength of your natural nails underneath. “I have always been so passionate about keeping natural nails really healthy,” says Diogo, “so knowing that Bio Sculpture revolves around nail health means that it really aligned with me. It’s pretty much what I’m known for using now.”

What are the benefits of Bio Sculpture nails?

With that in mind, a Bio Sculpture manicure is not a one-size-fits-all experience. “It’s much more like giving a consultation where I’d determine which products I’m going to use for your nail type ahead of the manicure,” explains Diogo. Bio Sculpture products are prescriptive in nature, meaning that they can be personalised precisely to the client’s exact nail needs. “There are different basecoats to suit different nail types, whether you’ve got flexible nails, brittle nails or really strong nails. That’s really what makes Bio Sculpture stand out,” says Diogo.
The promise that your nails are looked after while your gels are on means it’s less likely to damage your natural nail plate, resulting in weak or peeling nails, which are common following repeat gel nail appointments. Diogo has lots of loyal clients who opt for Bio Sculpture manicures back to back with no problems to their natural nails, she reports. Even better, Bio Sculpture offers pre-manicure nail treatments under its sister brand, Ethos. Consisting of oils, exfoliators and vitamin- and mineral-infused base coats, Ethos products are intended to be layered under Bio Sculpture polish before starting the manicure, says Diogo. “It’s all about strengthening the nail and keeping your nails super healthy while that polish is on,” Diogo adds. Bio Sculpture devotees also claim that the gel system helps with nail growth.

What’s the difference between Bio Sculpture and other gel nail brands?

Unlike other gel nail brands which you might spot in your local salon, technicians that work with Bio Sculpture have to complete an accredited training course to be able to offer their services. “You can pop in somewhere and get a standard gel polish, but Bio Sculpture doesn’t have that same level of accessibility because you have to be trained to use it,” confirms Diogo. “I think that’s super important because you know that the nail tech sitting in front of you really understands that product before using it.”
Nail technician Jaz Moger (aka @paintbyjaz) recently completed the training in order to be able to offer Bio Sculpture manicures at her own salon space after admiring the brand from afar. “As a nail tech that cares deeply about my client’s nails, my top priority has always been nail health,” Moger says. “I loved the ethos behind the brand and how every Bio Sculpture manicure that I would see online looked so healthy, clean and flawless. I could always tell straight away if it was a Bio Sculpture product that had been used and I wanted in.”
So how does Bio Sculpture compare to something like builder gel, which has similarly been formulated with a focus on nail strength? If you have damaged nails or nails that grow very slowly, then BIAB might remain a good option for you. “A lot of people will lean towards BIAB because their nails aren’t in the best condition,” agrees Diogo. However, the array of base coats available with a Bio Sculpture manicure means that even people with very damaged nails will find an option to suit. “There’s a base that is almost like BIAB called Contour, which would work for [damaged] nail types,” Diogo advises.

What’s the difference between Bio Sculpture and BIOGEL?

You may also have heard of BIOGEL, Evo, Gemini or even Bio Sculpt when looking into Bio Sculpture treatments. Bio Sculpture is the actual overarching brand, while BIOGEL, Evo, Gemini and the aforementioned Ethos are the brand’s products. ‘Bio Sculpt’, on the other hand, is just a common mispronunciation of Bio Sculpture.
BIOGEL is the original soak-off formula and it comes housed in a little pot that allows nail artists to use their own brushes, giving them the power to create more precise and personalised designs. Available in over 200 colours, BIOGEL boosts natural nail health, is suitable for all nail types and is chip-resistant. 
Evo is this exact same formula, but packaged in a standard nail polish bottle with a brush inside. 
Gemini is a different product entirely, but comes in all the same colours. Rather than a gel formula, Gemini products come in a regular nail polish formula for those who don’t want gel nails. Unlike regular polishes, though, Gemini features nourishing plant extracts and UV filters to protect your nails. It’s also fast-drying and long-lasting with an impressive level of coverage and colour intensity.

How long do Bio Sculpture nails last?

While we all want healthy nails, there is the question of longevity when it comes to forking out for a salon manicure. Diogo credits the Bio Sculpture topcoat not only for the glossy finish that you’ll spot on most of her trademark manicures, but for how it extends the life of your gel nails. “It keeps the nails super shiny and I do believe that it has more longevity than a traditional gel polish,” says Diogo. “I have my own techniques to extend a manicure, like tucking the polish under the cuticle fold so that grow-out seems like it’s taking that bit longer, but I’ve had clients that have gone five weeks between Bio Sculpture manicures, which is just amazing.”
Of course, predicting how long a manicure will last is a bit of a guessing game as things like the condition of your nails to start with, the rate of your nail growth, and what your hands are exposed to each day can really affect the longevity of your polish. However, manicurists seem in agreement that Bio Sculpture provides a long-lasting manicure, so around three weeks seems to be what you can expect as standard. Any longer is a bonus.

How do you remove Bio Sculpture nails?

As has become the standard technique for most of the gel nail polishes that followed, Bio Sculpture nails are removed by gently buffing away the top layer of polish, wrapping the nail in a cotton pad soaked with acetone, then enveloping the nail in foil and leaving it to soak for approximately ten minutes. “If you leave it on for the right amount of time then you don’t have to do any scraping to the nail; the product literally just crumbles or comes off in one big piece. It’s really satisfying,” says Diogo. 

How much does a Bio Sculpture manicure cost?

Like most beauty services, the cost of a Bio Sculpture manicure is dependent on where you live. You’ll definitely pay more in cities — and likely top price in London. On average, you can expect to spend $60 and up for the service, with removal or additional nail art setting you back more.
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