Gel nail polish has been popular recently with fashion bloggers and beauty gurus. With three times the staying power of regular nail polish, it’s no wonder this trend is making such an impact. Once you try gel nail polish, it’s hard to go back to any other polish. The best part about gel nails is they’re relatively easy to do at home. You don’t have to spend a lot of money on a professional manicure or pedicure and you can achieve salon quality results from home.
The biggest mistake people make when painting your nails with gel polish is rushing in without learning more about the right way to do the process. Unlike regular nail polish, there’s a bit more prep work involved with creating the perfect manicure every time with gel nails. Gel nail addicts need to know these five dos and don’ts!
Gel Nail Polish Dos
Do clean your nails before you start painting. Unlike traditional nail polish, gel nail polish actually adheres to the top layer of your nails. That’s why it’s so important you clean your nails thoroughly before you get started. Use an alcohol swab to be extra sure there’s no dust or stray particles on your nail that can mess up your manicure.
Do only use small brush strokes. With traditional nail polish, sometimes you need longer sweeps with the brush to make a seamless color. This isn’t the case with gel polish which is much thicker and doesn’t need help blending without fine lines or spots.
Do coat the area around your nail with lotion. Gel nail polish is harsh on your skin and can be a pain to remove. If you have a shaky hand, you should apply lotion around your cuticle to make removing stray polish a breeze.
Do allow the nail polish to dry fully. Gel nail polish cures incredibly fast, but it’s still easy to mess up a good manicure by assuming it’s dry when it’s not. You should be careful for at least an hour after a gel manicure to avoid smudging or chipping the polish.
Do invest in the right materials. There are so many different brands available now both in stores and on websites for gel nail polish addicts looking to add more colors and styles to their collection. You should do your research and experiment with different polishes and tools to find the best one for your needs.
Gel Nail Polish Don’ts
Don’t bother with a base coat. One of the best parts of gel polish is it doesn’t need a base coat. Because the polish adheres to the top layer of your nail, there’s no point to including a base coat which actually will limit the longevity of your manicure!
Don’t use more than two coats. Regular nail polish is thin, and it might take several coats to make the color really pop. Gel polish, however, is naturally thick, and extra layers won’t look good. You shouldn’t need any more than one or two layers to create long-lasting color.
Don’t forget to paint the edge. When you paint with traditional polish, you probably don’t think about painting the edge of your nail. This is an essential step when working with gel polish, and a lot of new gel polish users don’t know about it. Basically, you should run a layer of polish over the very tip of your nail to seal the polish and prevent chips.
Don’t pick your nails! Gel nail polish can last up to two weeks without chipping or falling off. It can be tempting to pick at your nail polish, especially if you’ve had the color for a while. Don’t do this! Since gel polish adheres to the top layer of your nail, if you pick the polish you’re essentially picking away your nail which can be damaging.
Don’t rush the removal process. Gel polish is a bit more challenging to remove than regular polish. That being said, it’s definitely not hard to do it the right way. If you remove the polish improperly, you can do major damage to your nails. Always read the instructions for your specific brand of polish to make sure you remove it the right way.
Gel nail polish is here to stay! There’s a reason so many people are turning their backs on regular nail polish altogether, and it’s because gel polish simply lasts longer, looks better, and is actually better for your nails. Just be sure you use these dos and don’ts!