How to Do Nail Gels at Home

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Nail gel is applied to nails to make them more resistant to stress. The gel, used instead of acrylic, serves as a nail enhancement for your real nails so you don't have to put on fake nails. Unlike nail polish, which must dry before you're able to touch anything, gels allow you to touch things immediately after application. Normally, salon technicians apply the gel, but if you're skilled at working with nails and you have the correct supplies, you may attempt to do this at home.

Things You'll Need

  • Cotton or gauze pad
  • Polish remover
  • 240-grit file
  • Three-way buffer
  • Nail gel kit
  • UV lamp

Use a cotton or gauze pad to remove enamel from the nails with a polish remover. Use a 240-grit file to file the nails. If the nail plate surface is uneven, smooth it out using a three-way buffer.

Apply a thin coat of the primer gel from the gel kit and dry it under the UV light for 1 to 1 1/2 minutes.

Brush the first coat of gel onto the nails. The first application should cover the entire nail, including the edges. Avoid getting gel on the cuticles and skin.

Dry each hand under the UV lamp for two minutes.

Apply a second coat of gel to each hand. The second coat should be thicker than the first coat. Push the brush toward the cuticle slightly, then pull the brush back toward you. Try to not touch the nail itself but only the gel on top of the nail. Dry each hand under the UV lamp for two minutes.

Apply a third coat of gel by laying a string of gel down the center of the nail. The gel spreads across the nail easily. Dry each hand under the UV lamp for two minutes. Fill out areas that are too thin, slowly building up the nails.

Use the gel cleanser from the kit or 99 percent alcohol to wipe down the nails. A tacky, sticky substance comes off the nails. Don't get this substance on the other nails: Use a different towel if necessary.

File the nails after the gel application to smooth them.

Tips & Warnings

  • Nail gel is difficult to remove, which is beneficial if you are tired of having chipped nails. However, if you make a mistake when applying the gels, removing the gel can be a hassle.

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