Welcome back to the DIS blog! Chapter two we will cover gel tips and all I have learned so far!! The tips are made out of actual gel polish, and they are flexible and soften a bit if you warm them up to your hand/ body temperature. I found I got a better fit when I bent them; I rolled them horizontally on the part you will glue to the nail bed. I have a video of this posted in our Facebook group.
The first step is to select your sizes. I do suggest writing these down so you will know for the next time. Each tip is marked with its size under the free edge side. It's tiny, but every one is labeled in case they get mixed up. There is a size zero as well. If you are inbetween sizes then you should size up, and use a file on the tip to get a glove like fit. Size your right and left hand separately because they may not be the exact same.
Some tips come pre-etched where your nail bed will be. For example, our medium almond shape tips are not pre-etched: our medium coffin gel tips are. If they are not etched, you will need to run a drill or small file (tip of a glass file worked well for me) to remove the shine from the underside of the tip. The shine will cause quicker pop offs. Once you have chosen all ten nail tips, you will also want to have your nails fully prepped before beginning.
I push back and clear cuticles, gently buff my natural nail, wash hands (optional I would say), I dehydrate with alcohol and then I'm ready to start. Also optional, but recommended for longer wear time; apply bonder and cure for 30 seconds.* (*I am assuming a lamp of 48 watts or above for all curing times. Feel free to reach out with questions.)
After curing the bonder (some brands are air dry- ours needs a lamp and has a sticky dispersion layer after curing.) Try not to touch your nails after the bonder step. Apply a thin layer gel base coat and cure 30 seconds.
Now to glue on the tips. Our recommended method is with our Multi-Use Gel Glue. (This step can also be done with any nail glue, including dip base.) With all the glue methods, I like to warm up the nail tip inbetween my fingers again here. Then I apply a thin layer of gel glue to my natural nails and cure them for 30 seconds.
Have your lamp set up ready for the actual application. You will be using both hands to hold the tip in place while you flash cure (10 seconds). I used 2 boxes of tips (or books), one to lift each side of the lamp: This allowed me to activate the auto light with both hands. We also sell mini finger lamps that are 9 watts. Some find this easier since the sides are open for both hands.
Next apply a small (here is where the learning curve started for me- and hand positioning for the flash cure) dollop of gel glue to the underside of the tip. When you apply the tip, use a firm heavy pressure. You want to push all the air out and flatten the tip on your natural nail. Now while keeping a tight hold, do your flash cure. Be sure to keep pressure tight while exposing different sides/ angles until the entire nail bed has seen at least 10 seconds of light. This also took me a couple fingers to get down. Let go with your opposite hand, and finish curing the nail tip on (20 additional seconds minimum).
That's it!! Do all 10 nails. I suggest doing both pinkies, both ring fingers, etc. and leave your pointer and thumb on your dominant hand for last. Shape, trim and/ or buff if needed. Here I would add peel base (buff before gel peel base, do not buff the shine of the tip off with air dry peel base.) Now you can add dip, or polish or whatever you'd like. If you are going for long lasting mani- 2 plus weeks- you want to buff the shine off the entire tip before continuing on to gel or acrylic for the best hold. I did have some bubbles my first time around, but they did not seem to affect wear and were not visible through my gel polish.
I will wrap up here but do leave me a comment if you’re enjoying or benefiting from our blog. Thank you for reading, and any requests can also be left in the comments. I am planning to put some work into the site over the next few months to hopefully make navigation easier. Have a wonderful week and I hope to meet you back here next time!!
Stay hydrated and take five minutes for you today!
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