I love getting my nails done; it makes you feel great and is a nice little treat. I used to have my gel nails done at a salon, but it became expensive and can cost between £20-30 at most high street salons and this was affecting my bank balance. While having my nails done professionally, i always thought i should try doing them myself at home. I bought all of the equipment i needed from the internet – mainly from amazon and eBay. My gel nails last between 2-3 weeks, unless i get bored of the colour and want to change it! I thought i would share the process of how i do my gel nails at home and this might inspire you to try it yourself!
What you will need:
- Cuticle pusher (metal or wooden)
- Nail File / Nail clippers
- UV nail curing lamp
- Gel base & top coat (i use blue sky, or you could use CND too)
- Gel colour coat
- Gel nail buffing block
- Lint free wipes
- Prep + wipe & acetone remover (i use the brand Gellux profile)
- Cuticle Oil / Hand cream
All of these products roughly cost me around £60-70, but in the long term i will be saving quite a lot of money and would properly get me 2 manicures at the salon!
1. Getting your nails ready is an important stage before you start to do your gel manicure as your nails need to be clean, so the first step is to remove your old polish. If you already have gel nails, remove them by soaking your nails in acetone or use cotton wool saturated in acetone, place this over the nail and wrap with tinfoil.
2. Trim your nails with clippers for your desired length (if you want them shorter) and use a nail file to smooth any rough edges.
3. Push back your cuticles. I find it easier to soak my fingers in warm water for a few minutes before doing this. I use a metal cuticle pusher, or you can use a wooden one. Wash your hands after preparing your nails to make sure they are all clean and ready for the gel.
4. Using a gel nail buffing block, gently buff the top of your nails as this provides a better surface for the gel to stick to.
5. I then apply some of the prep + wipe solution onto a lint free wipe and wipe this onto my nails to prep them before applying the base coat.
6. Apply a thin layer of the gel base coat onto your nails and cure under the UV lamp for 2 minutes (or however long your gel brand states otherwise). I am using the blue sky base coat.
7. Apply an even layer of the colour coat onto your nails. Make sure you do not get any of the gel polish onto your cuticle bed or finger, but if you do you can use the cuticle pusher to wipe this away. Put your nails under the UV light and cure for 2 minutes. If you want to apply a second coat of the colour (which i normally do), repeat this process. The colour gel coat i am using is the blue sky brand and is a dark grey colour; the colour code is: 80531.
8. Now you need to apply your gel top coat and cure again for another 2 minutes. Once you have cured your top coat, it is time to take off the tacky layer of gel. You simply do this by putting some of the prep + wipe solution onto a lint free wipe and wipe over your nails.
9. Lastly, i like to add some cuticle oil to keep my manicured gel nails hydrated and the one i use is OPI Avoplex Oil which absorbs deeply into the cuticle and smells lovely! Now your gel manicure is complete, easy right?!
Hopefully i have broken down the stages of creating a gel polish manicure that will be easy to achieve at home and i have inspired you to save your money in the long term by not getting them done at a salon! In the future, i will do some more posts on the different brands of gel available and also different nail art techniques!
Thanks very much for reading, until next time…