The field of makeup has become so diverse and creative these days that we see a new trend every few days. With the rise of the fashion industry, it can be hard to keep up! Even in the slightest aspects such as nails, there is so much variety in terms of art and design. From the traditional aspect of nail art and nail polish, now, women prefer 3D nails and gel nails. These are special ways to design your nails in such a way that they look distinctive from others and give away a uniquely modified design. Keep reading to learn more about gel nails as well as gel nail manicures.
What are Gel Nails?
For those who are new to this term, Gel Nails are nails that have an exceptional gloss and outstanding manicure look. This is because they are made of a three-step process which includes creating a base coat, nail polish, and top coat on the nails. The gel nails are generally more flexible because they have additional short-chain monomers which make them flexible. Gel nails are of several types.
Between each of the three coats, the nail is exposed to ultraviolet light for up to 2 minutes so that the coat can dry. Once it fully dries out, the next coat is applied, and so on. As a result of this, the nail polish does not smudge or get messy. Instead, it looks inch-perfect in terms of design and you have the perfect gloss on your nails too. Due to exposure to UV light, these types of nails are called light-gel nails. They have gained massive popularity in recent years.
No-Light Gel Nails
In other cases, there is no UV light used for creating the gel nails. Instead, a special gel activator is used. This gel helps to create a special effect on your nails. The gel activator can be brushed over the nails after every coat so that they can be hardened. Additionally, some nail artists also use this gel activator in the form of a spray. This is considered better as the gel nails are delicate and any extra spill of the gel activator could ruin the overall design and outlook. Therefore, we recommend using a spray instead of a direct brushed approach. Also, the light-gel nails are ideal for hardening as well.
Key Differences Between Gel Nails and Acrylic Nails
Many people are able to understand gel nails better once they get to know the difference between acrylic nails and gel nails.
Gel Nails are Fast
Gel nails get dried up and harden faster than acrylic nails. For the UV light gel nails, the drying is the fastest and you can have the nails ready in just 10 minutes. In addition to that, for light-gel nails, there is no extra application of chemicals which is why the nails look more natural as compared to other nails. On the other hand, acrylic nails have several chemicals used on the nails which is why they may not look as natural. They will also take more time to dry.
Gel Nails are Easy to Use
One of the core differences between gel nails and acrylic nails is that they are easy to use. You can simply order your own gel nails kit at home. With easy-to-follow guidelines, you can design your nails easily without any excessive hassle. They don’t require any major experience, especially if it is the case of light gels as you only need to point the UV light on the nails. Even the removal of gel nails is extremely easy. All you need to do is to soak these nails in water for only 10 minutes, and they will be easy to remove. Use a cotton ball soaked in acetone and softly rub it on the nails to remove the gel polish from your nails.
Expensive than Acrylic Nails
Gel nails are a relatively newer technology to nail polish applications. The use of UV light, as well as gel applicators, makes the gel nails more expensive than acrylic nails. In general, the gel nails start from $25 to $50 depending upon the salon that you are going for. Sometimes, there is a charge of up to 50%. The gel nail manicure is also quite popular and more expensive than the regular manicure therapy.
Gel Nails Don’t Last Long
Gel nails have a life of 14 days only after which they start clipping and chopping off. Acrylic nails have a longer life span because they have a wide range of gel chemical products applied which have a longer life. In terms of time, the gel nails have a faster curing time while the acrylic nails have a slower curing time. The main reason for this is that the acrylic nails have acrylic liquid and powder while most gel nails can be applied simply with a UV light. This is also the reason why gel nails have a shorter life while acrylic nails have a longer life.
Creativity and Variety in Colors
One of the major benefits of gel nails in comparison with acrylic nails is that there is a higher variety in terms of color while acrylic nails do not offer that much variety. The precision color application is possible in the case of gel nails only because they have 141 gel colors, 71 OPI colors, and 36 Essie colors as well. For acrylic nails, particularly in the material texture, there is not much variety in colors. This is also one reason why gel nails have become more popular than acrylic nails over the past few years.
You Can Change the Gel Nail Color Easily
This is a benefit that has made acrylic nails outdated and allowed people to conveniently change their nail color accordingly. You can change the color of your gel nails without soaking while you can’t do this in the case of acrylic nails. The main reason is that gel nails do not have as many strong chemical products applied to them. Therefore, changing the color is not much of a difficult process for anybody.
How to Apply Gel Nail Extensions?
Now that you are aware of plenty of benefits of gel nails compared with acrylic nails, here is a tutorial to help you apply gel nail extensions.
Step 1 – Preparing the Nails
Preparing the nails requires special cleaning of the nails. Trimming dead cuticles and pushing back the cuticles is essential. The nails should be buffed. The entire purpose is to keep the nails as clean as possible.
Step 2 – Measure Nail Tip Size
Most women know the suitable nail tip size which they can apply. However, if you don’t know it, simply measure the new nails and press them against your original nails. See how well they look. Choose the one which fits in the perfect manner. File the inside of the nail tips for a better final result.
Step 3 – Apply Bonder and Primer
To use any kind of artificial nail, you need to apply a bond to the natural nails. It helps to keep the nails dry and clean. It also reduces the chances of any chemical reaction or infection on the nails. On the other hand, a primer is used to make the natural nails sticky. This will help you attack the artificial nails easily as well as make it easier for the gel to stay on the nail. Apply the bonder first and wait 5 minutes. You should then apply the primer. If you purchase the gel nail kit from a top-rated brand, you will get the bonder and primer both.
Step 4 – Application of Gel
The most critical step in the entire tutorial is to apply the gel liquid. It will be included in the kit. Apply it to the natural nails but make sure that it is evenly spread. Use a brush for your assistance. Keep in mind that you need only a thin layer of it. Now you need to use the UV light on top of the applied gel. Make sure that you even use the UV light on the entire nail rather than on a particular part.
That’s it! You are all done with the tutorial for gel nails. Repeat it for all the fingers. One of the most important precautionary measures you need to consider is to make sure that the hand is straight. This will ensure that the gel does not flow away in any other direction. Instead, it will stay in the right position for you to apply the gel.
As far as the aftercare is concerned, you need to simply let the natural nails get some breathing. This will prolong the life of your natural nails and even allow you to have gel nails colored properly. Keep the gel nails soaked while the natural nails as they are for a week after some time to ensure long-lasting gel nails.
We hope you are clear on the concept of gel nails. These nails have become very popular among celebrities and fashion stars. If you feel that a gel manicure is expensive from a salon, you can simply get one for yourself with a DIY kit. There are plenty of them available online. Make sure that you follow the instructions properly. Only then will you be able to have the perfect gel nails with a design of your choice.